My Car Won’t Start

my car won't startCan you please tell me why my car does not start straight away when it is warm?  It does start straight away in the morning.  Once I have driven for an hour or so and when i switch off the engine for a stop for five to ten minutes  it takes about five to six key turn before it starts.  I will be very grateful  for our advice. thank you.


Hi There,


If the engine does not turn over

When I say that I mean, you turn the ignition key to the start position and NOTHING happens, no clicking noises, no RRR RRRR RRRR nothing.

If this is happening I would start with the battery. Do the headlights come on bright? If so, OK, probably not a battery problem. Are the battery cables tight and clean?

I would be looking at:

1. A bad starter motor, test power from the battery to the starter motor to determine.

2. Do you have a security alarm? Can you try another ignition key? Disable alarm?

3. Ignition switch problem under the dash, or ignition lock cylinder (where you insert the key)

Engine turns over but won’t start

If the engine spins over and over and over but won’t start then I would look at the fuel pump to see if it is pumping the proper volume and pressure to the engine. The fuel pump is inside the fuel tank, and sometimes you can hit the bottom of the tank with your fist as someone cranks the engine over.

Just because you hear the pump working, or see fuel coming out at the engine does not mean you have enough fuel PRESSURE or volume to start the engine.

Go to your local auto parts house and rent a manual fuel pressure gauge and test the fuel pressure AT the engine. There should be a schrader valve (like a tire air pressure valve) that the gauge will screw on to.

Both items (starter and fuel pump) are electrical parts and heat can cause those items to fail. Let them cool down and they seem to want to work properly until they get hot again.

Sometimes a light tap with a block of wood on the starter motor (usually under the vehicle on the passenger side, or on top of the engine area on the passenger side, or fuel pump inside the fuel tank) can jump start a worn out electrical part. If it works after the tap, then you need to replace that part.

If this is a Honda or Toyota, you might want to check the Igniter inside the distributor, which also fails when it gets too hot.

On an American car, this can be a problem with the ignition module or ignition coil, crankshaft position sensor, those part sends electricity to the spark plugs and can fail when it gets too hot. You would need to check for spark at the spark plugs to determine if you have spark.

A broken timing belt can cause this no start issue too. The engine will spin over much faster and sound much different than normal because there is no resistance inside the engine….nothing is spinning over inside, just the starter motor basically.

Watch this video to learn more about these types of car won’t start issues

Please share this with your friends
Austin Davis

Posted in: Won't Start Issues

5 Comments on "My Car Won’t Start"

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  1. Charlie says:

    My problem is the car won’t start after I have stopped someplace and removed the key(warm or not). When it does start the RPM is about 2000. As soon as I put it in gear it dies. Eventually it does start and if the RPM is normal, everything is fine. It will not happen again. Sometimes as the engine is idling, the RPM goes to 2000. My car is a 1997 Mitsubishi, Diamante, six cyclinder

    • Austin Davis says:

      I am not familiar with that specific vehicle, but it sounds like a MAF (Mass Air Flow) problem or possibly a dirty throttle body…or even a vacuum leak under the hood. I would clean the MAF and the throttle body first and see what happens. If you get it running, lightly tap on the MAF sensor, if the engine changes at all…its probably a bad MAF sensor. On some GM vehicles you can unplug it to get the engine started, not sure about yours though.

  2. Cumulonimbus says:

    I bought an alternator (brand new) and new battery but why does my 1989 chevy Corvette suddenly shut off after about 4. Minutes. Then I have to wait a up. Then I have to wait about 1/2 hour to a couple hours for it starts again. It’s so frustrating and annoying. So bummed out because I can’t dry anywhere. Any suggestions wood be greatly appreciated.

    • Austin Davis says:

      Sounds like a heat related issue. Ignition coil, fuel pump, ignition module…just to name the most common failures that tend to occur when the engine gets hot. Before you start guessing at parts, pay the $130 fee at the dealership or a trusted auto mechanic to investigate this further.

  3. Hotstuff says:

    Five or six key turns before it starts? Not really enough info there. Does it crank on all of those key turns? If not, then it’s probably the starter or solenoid. If it does crank reliably on every turn but just won’t start then it’s probably one of the other things that Austin already mentioned (ignition module, distributor, coils, as might apply).

    You’ll usually hear the electric fuel pump humming as it builds up pressure (for at least a few seconds) when you first turn the ignition to “on” (but not all the way to the “start” position) if it IS working. This would also indicate that the problem probably isn’t with your ignition switch. Also, the car would probably start but not run or accelerate very well if your fuel pump was weak or the fuel pressure/delivery was low. If the fuel pump is in the tank, the gas surrounding it should keep it fairly cool so it would probably not overheat.

    Aside from the things already mentioned, you could also have a “vapor lock” condition developing due to excess heat vaporizing fuel in the lines (or carburetor, or manual fuel pump on the side of the hot engine, as applicable) as the car sits.

    It would also be much easier to make an educated guess as to the nature of your problem had you provided more detail regarding the year, make, and model of your vehicle!

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