Troubleshooting A Car That Won't Start

Posted on: 1 March 2019

A car that won't start, whether in your driveway or in a parking lot, is a massive inconvenience that can screw up your entire day. There are a variety of different reasons why your car's engine is not able to engage, all involving different parts or systems within your vehicle. Understanding the symptoms of some of the most common culprits, and what can be done to get your engine running, can help minimize the disruption to your schedule and ensure that your vehicle is able to operate properly again as soon as possible.

Battery Issues

If your engine won't turn over at all, and all of your electrical systems, such as your radio and lights, stay dead, the issue likely lies with your battery. An older battery, or one that has become damaged due to an accident, may struggle to hold a charge and will eventually go dead, preventing your spark plugs from igniting the fuel in your engine. In the short term, you should be able to get a jump from another vehicle to start your car, but to be proactive about the problem, you'll likely need to have the battery replaced.

Congested Fuel Filter  

If your car lights and other electrical systems work without an issue when you turn the ignition, but your engine does not turn over, the issue could lie with your fuel filter instead. The fuel filter works to prevent contaminants, dirt, grease and other materials from entering the engine where they could potentially cause damage. Over time, these materials clog the fuel filter and can impede or completely stop the flow of fuel to the engine. Thankfully, replacing the fuel filter is a relatively simple process that should not be too expensive to have completed.

Starter Motor Damage

Finally, the last common reason why your vehicle's engine may struggle to turn on is that the starter motor has worn out or become damaged. The starter motor works to provide power to the engine so that it can engage. If the starter motor is worn down and unable to provide the initial power necessary, you will hear a constant clicking or grinding sound when you turn the ignition, and all of the electrical systems will work, but your engine will never engage no matter how long you wait. The starter motor will have to be replaced in order for your vehicle to start running properly again.

For more information, visit a local shop like Professional Automotive.