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Uh-Oh, Car Not Starting? Here’s What To Do

We’ve all been there. You go to start your vehicle, and it doesn’t start. What do you do next?

No Sound or Lights

Possible problem: Faulty battery connection. Examine the cable connections at the battery to see if they are loose. If so, take them off and clean them with a cloth or paper towel and then reconnect them.

Possible problem: Dead battery. Jump-start your vehicle if you have cables and can connect your battery to another automobile.

No Sound, But Dashboard Lights Work

Possible Problem: The car may not be in park or neutral or the switch on the side of the transmission is no longer working. Put the gear into neutral and attempt to start the car. Try stepping down on the brake pedal. If the vehicle has a manual transmission, push the clutch down.

Possible problem: Faulty starter motor or your ignition switch or cables connecting the ignition to the starter are malfunctioning. Have your auto towed to a mechanic.

Possible problem: Defective transponder or dead battery in fob. Refer to the owner’s manual to find out how to start your car if the fob is inoperable.

Starting Car

Engine Makes Clicking Noise

Possible problem: Weak battery. Turn on the headlights and if they shine brightly your battery is fine. The clicking sound signifies that you have a bad starter or a impaired connection. If the headlights are dim, jump-start your car as the battery is weak.

Normal Cranking, But Engine Won’t Fire

Possible problem: Extremely low on gas or tank is empty. Contact someone to bring you fuel.

Possible problem: Your engine may be flooded. This occurs when the engine contains excessive fuel and the spark plugs won’t spark due to being wet. Press the gas pedal to the floor and crank the motor so that the gas leaves the combustion chamber.

Possible problem: Blown fuse for the fuel pump or the ignition circuit. When a fuse is blown, the metal strip is broken with black discoloration that surrounds it. Insert a new fuse in the fuse box.

Slow, Dying Crank

Possible problem: Weak battery. Try to get a jump-start if possible and replace the battery immediately.

Crank With Grinding Noise

Possible problem: Starter is not grabbing the flywheel. Turn the key on and off three or four times to likely catch the flywheel and start. The problem is fragmented teeth on the flywheel and it requires mechanical expertise.

Very Fast Cranking With Spinning Noise

Possible problem: Broken timing belt. The connection between the upper and lower parts of the motor is broken. Since the pistons are lacking resistance, they are moving up and down quicker than normal because some of the valves are staying open. Stop cranking the engine at once and get your auto towed to a repair shop. Having your timing belt replaced as recommended can help prevent this malfunction.

Greatneck Motorsports carries a wonderful selection of high-end pre-owned vehicles. Our dealership is situated at 300 Great Neck in Great Neck and we may be contacted by calling (516) 590-3580.

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