Q: My 98 Tahoe won't start

asked by on January 07, 2017

My 98 Tahoe won't start. It won't even click or turn over when I try to start it. Has a brand new battery and all the lights come on when I get in.

My car has 141000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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Is the anti-theft system (Pass-Lock) light flashing ? If so, there may be an issue with the ignition switch or the chip in the key. If the chip is not sending a signal to the system, it will not allow the vehicle to start. Same goes if the ignition switch is bad. It will not receive the signal from the key if it is good. Try starting with another key if available. If the security light is on, try this re-learn procedure: This ten-minute procedure involves trying to start the engine. If nothing happens or the engine starts and dies, the security light will be flashing. Wait ten minutes. The flashing light should go off or illuminate without flashing. When it does, turn the ignition off, wait twenty seconds, and then try to start the engine. If it starts and runs, everything is okay. If you get the same result as previously—nothing happens or the engine starts and dies with the security light flashing—wait ten more minutes.

You will now begin the thirty-minute relearn procedure, which is just the ten-minute procedure repeated three times. After turning the ignition off for the third time and waiting for twenty seconds, the engine should start and run. If it doesn’t, there may still be something wrong with the system.

If this does not help, another possibility can be the starter itself. If the starter is easily accessed either under hood or under the vehicle, grab a friend and a small hammer. While one of you holds the ignition in the start position, have the other lightly tap the starter. If it starts, then the starter is your culprit. If neither of these help, have a certified technician look into why the vehicle will not start to find the exact cause.

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