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Ignition - Starter (delay Start Up Problems)


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I have a 1988 Toyota Camry which has 227,000 miles and has been just a great car. It is old it does have a few problems that every car with wear and tear needs fixing, like shocks in the back and a little greasing needed in the axles and maybe now (after stuck in flooding this past weekend) work on the rear brakes.

BUT one problem has been a constant one, since I got the car from my parents in 1994 and that is getting the car started. It sometimes can take as long as 15-20 minutes to get it started. The car always, ultimately starts and the starter was replaced 3 times by mechanics who insisted the problem was the starter. I know that isn't true. What the car does is make that grinding noise common with a problem starter, either that or sometimes no contact at all. Not for a few minutes at least until I try again. Sometimes it takes anywhere from 2 to up to 20 ignition turn on attempts to get the car started.

Back in the early 90's when my parents first noticed the problem, they took it in to the local Toyota dealer. The service repairman was aware of the problem, said it happened with other Camry's also. He recommened using a lighter key chain as to not put weight on the ignition switch, so I knew early on the problem was in the ignition switch not the starter, even with it making the grinding sound of a failing starter. Cost repair would be about $800-$900 back then, 11 years ago to get the entire ignition switch assembly replaced.

We've always decided to just live with the handicap since the car eventually always starts rather than pay what is probably $1500 to get the ignition box fixed today. But now I have only one car. I decided to keep the 1988 Camry over my 1998 Oldsmobile because it has performed better as well as do better on gas (a necessity right now). Just that darn ignition-start problem.

So why I write this is to find out if anyone else has had the same problem, with an older model Camry? If so, what did it cost to get it fixed and where, where can I get it fixed? My local Toyota dealer and do you think I could find a mechanic who's aware of the older model Toyota Camrys? I've heard too about the ignition coils and a temperature problem and could that be all I need fixed?


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