Q: Car won't start - Ford Escape

asked by on October 25, 2016

My car won't start. We've changed the starter and tried many batteries. When we turn the key the volts on the battery drop from 12 to 7 or 8.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Battery Replacement $200.97 - $319.07 Get a Quote
Car is not starting Inspection $79.99 - $89.99 Get a Quote

If the battery starts out at 12 volts and is dropping to 7 or 8 volts, then you have a bad battery. When cranking, it shouldn’t fall below 9.6 volts. There may be other issues at hand, but the numbers you listed are that of a battery that needs to be replaced. Without knowing what signs are associated with the vehicle not starting, it’s hard to say if there is a starter problem, a fuel pump that isn’t supplying enough fuel, or an ignition problem. If the car cranks normally and just doesn’t start, then I would look at the fuel supply, or check to see if the engine is getting spark. If you turn the key and just get a clicking sound, then I would suspect the battery (though until you have a battery that doesn’t fall below 9.6 volts when the engine is cranked, the other tests will need to be questioned), a wiring problem, a faulty relay, or any number of other possible problems. It would be a good idea to have a certified technician, such as one from YourMechanic, diagnose your starting problem for you.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

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

What others are asking

High idling on cold start

Hi there thanks for writing in about your 2006 Lincoln Zephyr. This sounds like a failing idle air control valve issue. If this is confirmed, and the valve is replaced, there is also a 'relearning" process for the engine management...

How do you replace the battery in the remote for a Ford Fusion?

Your car’s Remote Entry system is certainly convenient. It provides you with the means to lock or unlock the doors from a distance, open the trunk, and even set off a panic alarm if you feel threatened. Of course, the...

My car is cranking but not starting - 2003 Chevrolet Malibu

Hi there. If you've kept the vehicle in storage for five years and it was not started during that time, it's possible that the fuel inside the tank has gone bad. Gasoline, like anything that is refined for use, has...

Smoking from radiator. Is it safe to drive

It sounds like your vehicle is overheating. It is typically not safe to drive the vehicle when it is overheating as this may risk additional engine damage. Overheating can be caused by a number of things such as low coolant...

Steering wheel is locked up and key won't turn.

Hi there. Try turning the steering wheel back and forth while trying to turn the key in the ignition. There is a steering wheel lock inside the steering column that could be bent or broken if the ignition switch will...

My truck turns over and acts like it wants to start but doesn't and now the battery is dead.

It could be that all your trouble is in the battery-charging system. If the system voltage drops below about 10 volts. The electronics will not work correctly but you will still have enough voltage for the starter to turn. The...

2009 Ford Escape has a code P0400 even after EGR valve replacement

If your test results for KD5 and KD7 are accurate, there is a short between the PCM and EGR stepper motor. Your readings indicate both a short to ground and power, so my guess is that the four wires inside...

Battery replaced, fuel gauge stopped working

Hello. There are a couple of reasons that would cause the fuel gauge to stop working. The most common reason is that the fuel level sending unit has failed and is not accurately reading the fuel level. The fuel level...

Car engine races intermittently and at start.

Claimed by Marvin Sunderland

Related articles

How to Diagnose a Car Battery Drain
It It is safe to say that every car owner reading this has likely experienced that time where you were leaving your home or walking out to your sitting car, only to discover that the battery in your car was...
How to Jumpstart a Car
When When you car battery dies, you car will not start. To get the car moving again, you need to “jump” your car using jumper cables that help conduct electricity from another vehicle, which has a properly functioning battery, to...
Top 10 PZEV Cars for Eco-Friendly Drivers
Teddy Leung / Shutterstock.com The whole idea of a PZEV (that is, a partial zero-emissions vehicle), seems paradoxical. You’d think it’d have to either be zero-emissions or not in the category at all. But as contradictory as...