Q: Car won’t start but cranks

asked by on

When I place key in car and the security light comes on but goes away and my car still won’t start.

My car has 14000 miles.
My car's transmission is unknown to me.

It is normal for the security light to come on when turning the key to the on position, as the system goes through a series of checks. Once the light goes off, the vehicle is clear to start. This may be related to many different possibilities, some of which may be related to a lack of spark or possibly timing issues and some of which may be related to a fuel delivery problem or a combination of both. Things like ignition coils, crankshaft position sensor, spark plugs, spark plug wires or ignition module are all components that help to create spark and control ignition timing which may cause the motor to not produce a spark or the correct timing needed to ignite the fuel in the motor.

In the case of a fuel delivery problem, this may be related to low fuel pressure, faulty or dirty fuel injectors, a faulty or dirty idle air control valve (this relays information about air intake to the computer which makes fuel adjustments), or potentially a faulty fuel pressure regulator or fuel pump. Fuel delivery problems will typically not allow the proper amount of fuel to be delivered to the cylinders which results in a lean fuel condition which can cause backfiring or simply cause the motor not to start as a result of fuel starvation. In some cases, too much fuel may be supplied to the motor causing too much fuel to be introduced to the motor faster than what it can burn it. This results in the motor being flooded with too much fuel also causing it not to run properly. Any of the above possibilities can create an imbalance in the proper air/fuel ratio as well which will cause the motor to run very rough or not at all. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and inspect your vehicle.

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 but cranks

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: Lots of tire wear and wear is not even

Greetings and thank you for writing in with this question! We first need to separate “wheels” and “tires.” Wheels are the metal (aluminum or steel) piece that the tire (black rubber) mounts to. Tires should generally last longer than 30,000...

Q: 4T65E just replaced 08 Lucerne 3.8L, replaced plugs/wires/1 coil pack melted at #4 so replaced it now rough idle

The coil pack melts down for a reason and cause will need to be diagnosed what caused it. The most common cause is a short in the signal wire or excessive resistance in the plug wires or plugs. I recommend...

Q: My Buick LeSabre 1998 model misfires on cylinder #3.

Hi there. The fuel is warm when the level is low and when the fuel tank is filled up the fuel tends to get cooler than it was before. In general, the fuel is low dense when it is warm...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...