One of the worst feelings is when you get into your car, turn the key, and nothing happens. It doesn’t start. At that point, you probably jimmy the key and try again. And again. Maybe one more time. Cursing could be involved now. Eventually, you’ll wonder why your car hasn’t started. Vehicles fail to start for many reasons. Here are a few of the most common.
Most of the time it’s your battery. Sometimes you’ll have a have a short that drains your battery slowly over time, sometimes it will lose its charge due to cold weather, sometimes your battery is corroded, and sometimes your battery is just old and won’t hold a charge anymore. Corrosion is easy to spot. It looks like a white, crusty, almost salt-like, substance, and it can be easily cleaned off with a wire brush. If your battery isn’t corroded, then it may have just lost its charge for some reason. Maybe you left a light on, maybe it was extremely cold last night. Either way, all you need is a friend and some jumper cables. Jumpstart your car. If it’s fine after you jump it, then you don’t have to worry it losing its charge again. Take out your battery and get it tested at an automotive shop.
A Bad Ignition Switch
If you get your battery checked out and it’s okay but your car still won’t start, you need to think about the ignition switch. To find out if your ignition switch is bad, simply turn the key to the on position, but don’t try to start your vehicle. If nothing on the dash lights up, you have a bad ignition switch.
Although many cars, especially new cars, do not have a fuse associated with the starting system, it can be worth it to look in your vehicle’s owner’s manual and find out. Fuses are cheap, easy to replace, and, if you have one connected to your starting system, could be what’s keeping your car from starting.