Ford F-250: How to Replace Your Starter

A starter is responsible for starting your Ford Super Duty. Here is how to replace it yourself and save some money.

By Pizzaman711 - October 30, 2014

This article applies to the Ford F-250, F-350 Super Duty (2005-2014).

The starter on your F-250 Super Duty truck is key to going anywhere, it provides the initial momentum for the engine to turn over thus starting the motor. Over time it wears out from normal use, holding the key too long when starting it, and natural causes like corrosion. Symptoms of a bad starter usually are a motor that turns over slowly or doesn't turn over at all. An easy way to diagnose a bad starter is by hitting it with the end of wrench and then trying to start the truck, if it starts, chances are the starter is worn out.

Material and Tools Needed

  • Socket set with sizes varying from 8mm to 11/16"
  • Socket extensions and swivels
  • Replacement starter
  • Torque wrench

Step 1 - Safety first

The starter relies on a huge electrical current to be able to turn the motor over so you'll need to take proper precautions to protect yourself.

Using your socket, disconnect the negative battery cable(s), it's usually 8mm.
Figure 1. Disconnect Battery Cables.

Pro Tip

When you disconnect the negative cable either wrap it in a cloth or tuck it where it won't make contact with metal to prevent any sparks.

Step 2 - Gain access (optional)

This step is completely optional and really just dependent on you. You have to access the starter from the underside of the truck. Depending on your size, you may find it hard to access the starter comfortably. If this is the case, you'll either need to pull the truck up on car ramps or use a jack and jack stands to raise the front of the vehicle.

Pro Tip

Never lay under a truck that is only supported by a floor jack, they aren't meant to hold the weight for extended periods and you'll be putting your safety at a huge risk.

Step 3 - Remove starter

If you're looking at the front of the truck, the starter will usually be on the lower passenger side. However if you're unsure, you can trace the hefty battery cable going to it.Side under your truck and remove the 2 cables attached to the starter (usually around 7/16"). I recommend taking a photo so you can be sure you put them back in the correct spot.

Figure 2. Starter Electrical Connections

Now you'll need to remove the three bolts holding the starter in place, there's no real specific order to do this, however I like to save the top bolt for last. The lower two bolts are relatively easy to access and with a little elbow grease should come out no problem. The upper bolt is in an awkward position to get to and will require your extensions and swivels. Usually you'll have to access it by running the extensions out through the fender well. Once all bolts are out, you can remove the starter.

Step 4 - Install

Position the starter in place and then hand tighten the three bolts onto it first. Then torque the three bolts to 18 ft-lbs using your torque wrench. Re-install the two cables onto the starter. Finally, re-connect the battery or batteries by connecting the positive (red) cable first and then the negative (black) cable.

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