Car Starter Problems

Reader Question

Hi Austin, I’m hoping you can help me out as soon as possible. We started checking the automatic starter on my car today because it has suddenly stopped working. It clicks, but that’s all that happens. So we had a look at the starter box under the steering wheel and now the entire car wont start… almost like it stops itself.

Could it be anti-theft? How do i bypass that or reprogram it? Everything else has been checked… Coincidentally, I had it scanned this morning to see why my engine light was going on.

But after bringing it back home and looking to see if maybe there was a loose connection or a valet switch for the auto-starter, the car stopped starting.

I spent the entire day in a garage with 4 strange men and none of them could figure it out… the garage had closed… is there anything you can do to help me?

I have to pick up my son tomorrow at Boy Scouts and then my daughter in the city but the car has decided not to budge today… or tonight. Can you please send me some useful information? Everyone is stumped…and yes, I have gas and sparks and the whole bit. Starts and then shuts itself off.

Thank you soooooo very much!

Hello Sylvie

Hey there Sylvie,

I am confused. You say your starter just clicks, but they you say the car has gas and spark, and starts and then shuts off. Which one is it?

If you hear a click at your starter and you have bright headlights, then it could be your starter motor that is faulty. You can lightly tap the starter motor with a block of wood WHILE someone is holding the key in the START position.

If you have a bad starter this will sometimes make it work. Make SURE you have the car in park and the emergency brake on.

If you try to start the engine and the headlights go OUT altogether when you hold the key in the START position you probably have a bad battery or loose or dirty battery cables at the battery.

If you try to start the engine and the lights DIM when you hold the key in the start position you probably have a bad starter motor.

Here is more info you should read on the subject to see if you can help narrow things down for me.

Car Won’t Start

Let me know what you find out and we can go from there.

Please share this with your friends,
Austin C. Davis

4 Comments on "Car Starter Problems"

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  1. Shari says:

    My car won’t start. I was told it was the fuel pump so I got my fuel pump, filter, and fuel injectors done. Still no start. I had a tune up and my starter is brand new and alt is shooting right volts. I’m lost??? Please help me!!

    • Austin Davis says:

      Shari, PLEASE see a real mechanic…one that will not guess at parts at your expense. It can be many things that are keeping the engine from starting and I dont want to guess ….any more than you already have. Pay the $125 for a dealership diagnosis.

      I dont know what kind of car you have, but you are missing a key ingredient, fuel pressure, spark to all spark plugs, and compression.

      No Spark? ignition coils, crankshaft position sensor, camshaft position sensor
      No Compression – broken timing belt, broken or “jumped timing chain”, other internal engine problems like a blown head gasket

  2. Zack says:

    Straight to the point good info here Austin, thank you.

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