Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car won't start, turns over and lights come on

asked by on

Cannot get car to start, it will turn over and the lights come on the dashboard but literally nothing else happens

My car has 182131 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi There, It sounds like you may have a faulty connection to the starter or possibly a failing starter relay. The starter relay directs power from the battery to the starter solenoid which then engages the starter when you turn the key. When this is not working properly, you may notice intermittent starting problems including no response when turning the key to start. Generally, when this does fail, it does so very randomly and usually without warning other than intermittent starting. The power from the battery will still power other accessories such as radio, horn, etc., but you may not have any power to the starter. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and replace your starter relay.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Car won't start, turns over and lights come on

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: I changed my oil pump and now when I try to start it it only clicks once

Unfortunately you have already damaged the motor running the engine until it dies when it lost oil pressure. The bearings for the crankshaft and camshaft have been starved of oil and seized the engine. You will need to have the...

Q: Distributor gear is missing teeth

The teeth themselves cannot be replaced on a distributor. If the teeth are missing the whole distributor will need to be replaced. It is also a good idea to have your spark plugs and wires replaced at the same time....

Q: Car not idling properly

Hi, thanks for writing in. I'd be happy to help. This is a common symptom on many cars when what is called a mass airflow sensor is not working properly. This is a unit that monitors air flow intake as...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
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...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.