My hot starter won’t work

May 1, 2010 | By Richard Prince


I recently changed from a single to dual exhaust on my 1966 Chevy C10 Custom pickup with a 283 cid engine. Now I am having problems with the starter motor. When the engine gets hot it will not start, it will not turn over or even click just as if the battery is dead.

I bought an insulated blanket wrap for the starter and this worked for a little while then the same problem arose again. I recently bought a reflector from Summit that bolted to the starter and covered both the starter and solenoid. This solution seemed to help but now the same problem is starting to rise again.

The truck will start after it cools down but this has taken up to an hour and a half sometimes. What can I do now?


The failure of Chevrolet starters to function well when they are subjected to excessive heat is a somewhat common problem.

A heat shield and insulating wrap usually solve the starting problem, but you’ve already tried those approaches so I’ll offer some other suggestions.

A high torque, lightweight racing starter motor will normally stand up to the heat much better than a stock unit. Tilton is one brand of high-performance starter that I have used and can recommend from personal experience. Summit (, Jegs ( and most other high-performance parts supplierssell racing starter motors.

Another solution is to use a remote starter motor solenoid. The failure to start is almost always due to the effects of the heat on the starter solenoid, not the starter motor. If you mount a remote solenoid away from the exhaust system and other sources of intense heat it will function much better. MAD Enterprises ( sells remote solenoid kits that include everything you need.

In the alternative, you can just buy a remote solenoid and add in the mounting hardware and wiring yourself. Ford used remote solenoids in most of its vehicles until around 1996 and these will work in your Chevy truck. If you want to stick with GM (well, sort of) you can buy an AC Delco remote solenoid that’s sold under part number U939.