Q: Car won't start after driving without the cap on the antifreeze.

asked by on

I was putting antifreeze in my explorer and forgot to cap it back. I want driving and I noticed the car was smoking. I pulled over and put the cap back on. I drove almost home and the engine turned off at the stop light. I tried to start it and I'm getting a lil sound like it wants to crank but it doesn't. If it got all over my alternator would that stop it from turning over??? Please help me

My car has 181000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi there. From the description you have provided, antifreeze getting on the alternator would not keep the engine from turning over unless the battery was low. The alternator could have been compromised by the antifreeze, if your vehicle was driven far enough with the alternator not charging.

This would account for the engine turning off and not turning over, assuming the engine was not overheated due to the low antifreeze level. The battery and alternator require inspection. I recommend having a certified mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, determine why your vehicle won’t turn over and suggest any needed repairs.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Car won't start after driving without the cap on the antifreeze.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: When car starts, it shudders before shutting off

A clogged fuel filter can cause stalling issues on a vehicle. The clogged fuel filter makes the fuel pump work harder to deliver fuel to the engine and can overheat the fuel pump. The fuel level sending unit is in...

Q: Vehicle is slow to crank

Hello. The symptoms you describe can be caused by a few different things. A few common causes are blown fuses, poor battery connection, or a bad battery. The odometer appears to be continuously resetting then it may be possible that...

Q: Leaking coolant onto belt

It sounds like you have a leak accompanied by overheating. From what you have described though, it is unclear if the overheating is being caused by the coolant leak (low coolant can cause overheating) or the two are just simply...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...