Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: When I put the charged battery in the car, the engine started and the vehicle moved with no key. Why?

asked by on

I charge my battery and i was putting the battery back in my chevy i screwed the negative in first then the positive and thats when the car started to turn over and move forward. The car had no keys in the ignition.

My car has a manual transmission.

Hi there. There is a short to the ignition switch in the steering column. The starter relay wires to the ignition switch may have shorted to the main power to the ignition switch. This would cause the engine to start with no key in the ignition switch. I recommend replacing the steering column actuator and also looking at the wiring under the steering column for any wires burned together. Fix any wires that are burned. Make sure that you have the battery disconnected before working on any wires. If you need further assistance with your vehicle starting without the ignition key, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

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
  • Home
  • Questions
  • When I put the charged battery in the car, the engine started and the vehicle moved with no key. Why?

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: Wiper has to manually be lifted before working - 1996 Chevrolet Beretta

You will have to replace the "wiper arm shaft" and/or wiper arm for the side which isn't working. Both of these components have very small splines which interlock when the nut is tightened. A heavy snow or ice load can...

Q: CEL transmission slipping

Hi there. You definitely appear to have a voltage issue with the vehicle. From what you are can be a bad connection at the battery, a failing alternator, or most commonly a bad ignition switch. I usually start by checking...

Q: Keeps throwing main fuel pump circuit code.

Check the fuel pump relay and see if its getting hot. A faulty fuel pump relay will throw a fuel pump circuit code if the relay gets too hot. If there is a code for the camshaft actuator, then there...

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...
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.