Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car won't stay running

asked by on

My car starts but won't stay running. Then the battery dies.

A: Sounds like you might be having an alternat...

Sounds like you might be having an alternator problem. The vehicle uses the battery to start, once it is running the alternator takes over providing the vehicle with all the electricity it needs. If the alternator fails, the car continues to run until the battery is drained. If you recharge the battery it will start and run until the battery is drained again. A mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, will be able to test your battery and charging system to get you back on the road.

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!

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: Car tries to turnover but won't start

Hi there. If your car is not turning over, despite a new battery and a jump, then it is probably not a battery problem. It may be possible that there may be a problem with the vehicle's starter, or starting...

Q: Coolant

Hello. Typically in a circumstance such as this, a mechanic would pressurize the cooling system when cold, so as to allow up-close inspection, and identify the leak. A non functioning cooling fan can cause overheating which indirectly could cause coolant...

Q: How can you tell if your alternator is working properly?

Hi, thanks for writing in. Usually this is identifiable by the charging system gauge in your car, which should typically read, at idle, 13.8 to 14.3 volts with no lights or accessories on (although some may charge at a slightly...

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...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...