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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Car worked fine a few days ago, and honestly have never had many problems with it.

Went to move it and it was acting dead, lights were dim. Hooked up some jumpers, left them connected to another vehicle for 15 minutes, car still won't turn over, and I'm hearing no clicking either from the starter relay. Odd.

Popped hood. Notice a slight 'whirring' noise from the engine compartment. Pulled the green fuse out of the battery fuse block (all the way to the left of the triple fuses), on the left, and the whirring stopped. Hooked up a battery charger, left it overnight.

Still nada. No turning over. Not even a starter relay click. Everything else works great, lights, radio, blower, etc. Where should I start?
 

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Have you checked the battery voltage? It could have enough juice to power the lights, etc. but not enough to crank.
 

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But what is the actual voltage?
 

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'91 GLI, '98 Vr6 GTI, '17 Golf R
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How old is your battery? Because I'm thinking your battery is shot. You didn't say if you did, but did you try jump starting it when you had it connected to that other vehicle? A battery charger can give a false "charged" reading with a bad battery. It could also be the "neutral safety switch".
 

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Alright.

1. Look at the positive clamp on top of your battery, over time the big wire going down to starter break at the clamp. Wiggle the wire a little, make sure it is tight.


2. Unplug the signal wire at the starter, the small square connect or on the starter solenoid. That wire with send battery voltage to run the starter when you turn the key to start. You may need some help for this part. If you have a test light, stick the probe in that square plug and ground the test light, either leave visible from inside car or have someone crank it. If it lights up, replace starter. You can also do this with a multimeter and check if you get 12 volts during start.

2.1 you could just take a wire and jump the starter from battery + to the solenoid where square plug goes in. Put The Car In Neutral! And ignition on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Updates:

Had battery tested at parts store, it's fine. So that's not it.

Pull the fender liner and under car panels to get access to the starter, have the GF try to start it while I have a meter hooked up to the square signal wire, and it gets 12v, so that means clutch/ignition switch good, starter bad.

Get a new starter from Parts store, swap that in, and..... yeah same ****. Now I hear a small click, and no crank, no start. I don't get it. And that whirring when I plug the 3rd fuse in, what is that? It's like a high pitched electrical whine. It never did that before, and it does not stop and kills the battery if I leave the fuse plugged in.
 

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well good news, you got somewhere. as suggested, possible that the new starter is bad or your battery is crap (your battery assessment could be wrong).

whirring noise, a lot of 1.8Ts had an auxillery water pump/electric after run pump. sometimes they run, don't remember much about them though. Usually it is located belt side lower end in front of the rad
 
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