Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Mazda 3 2010 has random starting issues

asked by on

2010 Mazda 3

When we turn the key, all dash lights come on but the car will not crank at all. It happens randomly and then will start fine for a few days then repeat the issue. The battery is checked and is fine so I believe it could be the ignition coils. Or could there be another issue?

My car has 108000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

If the engine is not cranking, that is the starter motor is not engaging the flywheel and turning the engine over, that doesn’t implicate the ignition system (e.g., ignition coil(s)). A possible cause of your no start condition is the starter motor itself. The next time the starter fails to operate, try hitting the starter motor with a rubber mallet. If the car then starts when you turn the key, the problem is a weak spot on the armature in the starter motor; by tapping the motor you move the armature slightly. A more "sophisticated" approach to diagnosing this is, the next time you have a no start condition use a voltmeter to check for full battery voltage at the starter motor, while the key is held in the start position of course. If you see no, or low, voltage, during that test you have to trace the circuit to determine why no power is getting to the starter. However, if when the key is in the start position, power is being supplied to the starter, there is no voltage drop, and yet the starter doesn’t run, obviously that would mean you need a new starter motor. If you desire that a certified professional from YourMechanic diagnose the no start condition and, if need be replace the starter motor, please follow up to schedule a mobile diagnostic.

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: Cars cranking but not firing

This may be related to many different possibilities, some of which may be related to a lack of spark and some of which may be related to a fuel delivery problem or a combination of both. For example, if the...

Q: Heater pipe broke water run out now car does not start

If you broke a coolant or heater hose or pipe and then continued to drive the vehicle until the engine seized up then you may have damaged the engine bearings, pistons and other major components in the engine. If the...

Q: Hearing bubbling/gurgling under dash in engine when I accelerate slowly (in parking) 2005 Mazda 3

Hi there - I suspect the "gurgling" you hear is coolant, with an air pocket circulating in the heater core under your dash. You mention that your coolant level was low, and you had to add some on an incline....

Related articles

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...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...