Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Engine lost power and now won't start.

asked by on

I was driving my car home when it started to lose power and the Check Engine Light came on. The car stopped and when I went to restart it, it sounded like it wanted to start, but wouldn't turn over all the way.

Hi there. This can be caused by any number of different problems. Most of the time if the vehicle starts to gradually lose power and then it turns off it is caused by a failing fuel pump. It can be a sensor or other electrical issue, but the fuel system is the most common. You can do a preliminary check by tuning the key on and listening for a buzzing from the fuel tank indicating that the fuel pump is turning on. If you do not hear anything then the pump has likely failed. If it comes on then a fuel pressure test with a pressure gauge needs to be performed. For a test like this and a pending fuel pump replacement you should enlist the assistance of a certified mechanic, like one from YourMechanic, to get your car started again.

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. Engine lost power and now won't start.

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: A warning light came on, then the car lost power

This is something that will require firsthand inspection by a professional. I'm guessing when you say the warning light looks like someone laying down, you're talking about the supplemental restraint (SRS) warning light. This indicates a problem in the...

Q: Turns over won't start. 2000 Chevy Metro

Hello. Sometimes there are torque specs that are required for tightening the rod bearings. If they are too tight or too loose, it could prevent the car from starting. I would check a Chilton Manual for the proper specs for...

Q: I have a 2002 pt cruiser today I had to jump started and on the road the radio would tyen on and off the mileage light would flick

Hello, and thank you for writing in. The vehicle is likely experiencing an issue with the alternator or charging system. When the vehicle is running at a higher RPM, the alternator is working harder to produce more electricity. When you...

Related articles

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...
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...