How to Replace a Starter in a Mazda 626 LX

The Mazda 626 LX comes equipped with a high-torque starter motor to rotate the flywheel as you fire up the engine. The starter solenoid switch is mounted on the starter itself. If you need to replace a worn out or defective starter, you will find rebuilt or new units equipped with the switch as a single assembly. You can remove and install the new starter at home with a few simple tools by removing a minimum of accessories to gain access to the starter.

Removing the Starter

Step 1 Disconnect the black (negative) battery cable with a wrench. Move the cable away from the battery or wrap a shop rag around the cable terminal to keep it from accidentally touching the battery post as you work on the starter.

Step 2 Unplug the air cleaner assembly electrical connectors. Remove the assembly and air duct using a ratchet and socket.

Step 3 Locate the starter motor at the rear of the engine, right next to the transmission. If you need more clearance to gain better access to the starter, remove the bracket from the intake manifold with a ratchet and socket.

Step 4 Unplug the wire from the rear of the starter solenoid, which is the small cylinder mounted on top of the starter. Disconnect the heavy wire from the rear of the solenoid using a wrench.

Step 5 Shift the transmission to neutral. Raise the front of your Mazda with a floor jack, and lower it onto two jack stands for support.

Step 6
Apply the parking brake and chock the rear wheels.

Step 7 Slide under your vehicle and remove the lower starter mounting bolt with a ratchet and socket.

Loosen the other two starter mounting bolts with the ratchet and socket. Holding the starter with one hand, use your other hand to remove the two mounting bolts and take the starter out of the vehicle.

Installing the Starter

Step 1 Place the new starter in position and align the mounting bolt holes. Finger-tighten the two upper mounting bolts.

Step 2 Install the lower mounting bolt and tighten it to 33 ft.-lbs. with a torque wrench and socket.

Step 3 Tighten the two upper mounting bolts to 33 ft.-lbs. with the torque wrench and socket.

Step 4 Raise your Mazda and remove the jack stands. Lower the vehicle and remove the chocks from the rear wheels.

Step 5 Connect the heavy wire to the rear of the solenoid with the wrench. Plug the wire to the rear of the solenoid.

Step 6 Install the bracket to the intake manifold, if you removed it, with the ratchet and socket.

Step 7 Install the air cleaner assembly and air duct with the ratchet and socket. Plug the electrical connectors to the assembly.

Connect the black (negative) battery cable with the wrench.

Items you will need: Wrench set, Shop rag (optional), Ratchet, Socket set, Floor jack, Jack stands, 2 chocks, Torque wrench