Q: Key turns in ignition but engine doesn't turn over

asked by on

I started my car fine, drove to the store and as I got out of the car it made the dinging noise like when the door is open but the key is still in the ignition. But the key was not in the ignition. I put the key near, not in, the ignition and the dinging stopped. After shopping, I went back to my car and I tried to start it but the key goes all the way without any engine turnover, and no click, it just feels kind of doughy the whole way. The first time I tried to start it all the dashboard lights came on, but now they don't. The brake also feels hard to push down. I can turn the key backward and it clicks and works fine. It also can unlock and lock the doors with the buttons on the key fob.

My car has 130000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello there, many different faults can cause your car to not start when the key is turned. In this case the most likely faults would be a ignition switch, key cylinder, worn key, key transponder failure, or a wiring harness fault. A qualified technician such as one from YourMechanic will be able to diagnose your car not starting and make any repairs required to resolve it.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Key turns in ignition but engine doesn't turn over

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: Transfer case leak

Hi. The transfer case leak is a very common issue with these vehicles, especially at high mileage. The problem occurs when the pump for the transfer case begins rubbing against the side of the case. Over time, it will drill...

Q: Q: Car is shaking

You might be looking at the air conditioner compressor. It has a clutch on it so that the belt can freewheel around it until the electronic controller turns it on. It might turn on and off a couple of times...

Q: Engine swap and convert auto to manual

YourMechanic does not offer transmission/engine replacement or swap services. However, here is some advice. first of all, if it's possible to trade the automatic transmission-equipped vehicle for a similar vehicle with a manual transmission, you will save yourself a lot...

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...
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.
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.