Q: Just clicks when the key is turned over

asked by on September 23, 2016

The car also dies in mid traffic and is very hard to get started again. Also surges while driving. Now it won't even start
My car has an automatic transmission.

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Most likely your alternator has quit working. I would expect to see the red battery light on the dash illuminate if this is the case. This based on the starter just clicking when you attempt to start the car. Another possible scenario is the fuel pump has quit working and you have drained your battery from trying to start it when it died. The fuel pump is one possibility only.

Ideally, you need to diagnose your car. This will require you to check for fuel pressure, injector pulse, spark and camshaft timing. Spark is checked with a spark tester, injector pulse is tested with a noid light, fuel pressure is tested with a fuel pressure gauge and camshaft timing is best inspected by taking a compression test of each cylinder. Depending on what is found after these tests, you will need to follow the appropriate diagnostic path.

In addition to the tests I outlined above, connecting a scanner, checking for codes and studying sensor data will also be part of the diagnostic process. I recommend the following inspection to help you diagnose your car; Car is hard to start inspection which can be performed by a certified YourMechanic technician at your home or office.

Good luck!

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