Some auto problems can be prevented due to their gradual nature. However, malfunctions can develop suddenly and leave you unable to get on the road. If you’re stranded with a vehicle that won’t run, an auto mechanic may identify several issues causing the problem. The guide below covers some of these to help you prepare for service.
Why Isn’t My Car Starting?
1. Locked Steering Wheel
If you insert the key into the ignition and find that it won’t turn, the steering wheel’s automatic locking mechanism is likely stuck. This is a safety feature meant to prevent incorrect keys from being used.
To check if this is the problem, gently jostle the steering wheel from left to right with the key inside. If the ignition frees up and the key turns, you don’t need further service.
2. Dead Battery
When the power cuts off or you hear a groaning sound when you turn the key, the car battery may be dead. When this part doesn’t have enough stored voltage, it won’t power the engine.
A jump-start may be sufficient to get you back on the road. However, if the unit is five years or older, you may need to replace it.
3. Bad Starter
If you originally thought you had a weak battery but the unit is fully charged, the starter may be to blame. When this part draws more power than usual, you might hear a clicking noise but fail to get the engine running.
In some cases, the starter may need to be replaced. Alternatively, an auto mechanic may spot a damaged gear, ignition switch, relay, or solenoid.
4. Malfunctioning Alternator
When the alternator doesn’t work properly, the battery won’t get the power it needs to run. You might notice dim interior lights upon starting, a dashboard warning light, a grinding noise, or a burning smell.
Sometimes, this issue can be resolved by replacing the serpentine belt. If that doesn’t help, your auto mechanic may have to replace the alternator.
If your car doesn’t start, turn to M & R Automotive Service Center. Serving the Geneseo, NY, community, this auto mechanic pinpoints underlying causes of malfunctions. They provide towing to get your vehicle to their auto shop so they can correct the issue. Their services are reliable and cost-effective to get you back on the road with confidence. Visit them online to learn more about their capabilities or call (585) 243-1201 to request towing.