Cars have become an everyday part of our lives. We rely on them for work, retail therapy, and family errands. Without them, we find ourselves a bit lost. Unfortunately, we are all going to find our cars refusing to start at some point.
These are the main reasons your car won’t start and what you can do to fix it.
One of the most common reasons a car refuses to start is a dead battery. A simple thing, like leaving a tiny in-car light on all night, can drain it. Alternatively, if your car has been stood for a long time a battery can drain from not being used.
It could also drain naturally if your alternator is faulty or has a loose wire. The alternator charges your battery while the car is moving, if it is not working your battery will die.
If your battery is dead, it may have a light on. None of your car’s electrics will work either. If your headlights come on without a problem, then it is not a dead battery causing the issues.
To fix a dead battery you can:
- Have someone jump start your car with jump leads.
- Replace the battery.
Check Your Gas
Although it sounds laughable, it has happened. People have run out of gas when they have driven home from work, the thought to check the gas simply did not enter their minds. Then, when they went to start the car the next morning the car did not have enough gas to start.
If this is your problem, then you have an easy fix. Get some gas in your car.
Faulty Ignition Switch
If your battery is working but the car is still not turning over, you may have a faulty ignition switch. If the ignition is faulty the car will not be able to deliver power to the starter motor. Without that, your car won’t start.
You may need to replace the ignition switch. If this is the case, you can keep the same keys by having the ignition switch rebuilt. Alternatively, you can fit a new one with a new set of keys.
A clogged filter is an easy fix that can cause a lot of problems. Cars need fuel to run, a clogged filter prevents that fuel from reaching the engine.
Good car maintenance suggests you replace your fuel filters every 10,000 Miles.
If this is your issue, you simply need to replace the filter to get moving again.
Your car may not be cranking when you turn your ignition key. You may be hearing a clicking noise. The car is simply not starting and though it sounds like a dead battery, your lights are working. This could be a broken or weak starter. The starter is your electrical motor that sets the engine in motion.
Before shelling out the cash for a new starter, make sure it isn’t a stuck gear first. Tapping a starter a few times with a wrench or a hammer can loosen anything stuck and get you moving again. If this doesn’t work, you probably need a new starter.
Check if your Engine is Flooded
If you smell gas and your car won’t start, then your problem could be a flooded engine.
To unflood an engine, crank the engine while you press the accelerator to the floor to unflood the engine. Another method is to open your hood and wait a few minutes. This will allow excess fuel to evaporate. After a few minutes, try to start the car again without pushing on the gas pedal.
There are many reasons why a car won’t start, but by listening to the sounds of the engine and checking a few vitals you can determine the cause in most cases.
Thankfully, many of the problems that can cause a car to fail to start have quick and easy workarounds to get you moving again.