1962 Vw bug won't start by key, only push starting or jumping with screwdriver on starter

Asked by Aug 02, 2017 at 11:52 PM about the 1962 Volkswagen Beetle

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 1962 Vw bug that will not start unless I push start
it or jump it with a screwdriver from the starter to solenoid.
Other than that the key just gives a Click clunk sound. I
have replaced the positive wire on the battery to the
starter as well as the negative wire. I'm at a loss.

7 Answers


If it starts with the screwdriver then it's not the battery cables. Check the starter fuse, if fuse is ok, check starter telay

Ignition switch

I have "hot wired" ( terrible way of putting it) but bypassed the ignition switch and it does the same thing, there is a draw of current from the battery somehow when it gets power to the starter. The flip of the key dims the dash lights and it just clicks once.


Sounds like a voltage drop, test the voltage from the switch the solenoid in the crank position, this old a VW wiring is suspect.


Run a wire directly from the switch to relay, if it works, u have bad wiring


change solenoid.


I had one of these cars MANY years ago. Had the same problem. Mount a relay on the body area nearest the starter. Run a power supply through a fuse from the battery to the relay and the starter wire from the Ign key to the relay. This seamed to have sorted the problem out

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