Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Problems starting my car. It cranks strong but for a long time - 2012 Chevrolet Silverado 1500

asked by on

I have noticed that about 10% of the time my Silverado has a hard time starting. When I turn the key, it starts cranking strong but it goes through a lot of cranks before it actually starts. It does not sound like a low battery in that it does not start cranking slowly and then speed up. I have replaced the thermostat due to a different issue but the cranking problem had started before the thermostat problem. This problem occurs on both a hot and cold engine. I heard it could be the mass air flow sensor and just wanted to get a second opinion. Thank you.

My car has 63000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hi there. A malfunctioning mass air flow se...

Hi there. A malfunctioning mass air flow sensor may create the extended crank concern; however, a sticking idle air control valve can create the same concern. Cleaning of either components has been known to help with the situation. However, this is rarely a long term repair and is only temporary.

You could clean one at a time and see which one alleviates the extended crank and replace as necessary. Also, there may be a residual fuel pressure problem. Residual fuel pressure is the pressure that remains in the fuel lines and injectors to provide immediate start up fuel. If the check valve in the fuel system is bleeding off, this could definitely be the cause. However, since it is only 10% of the time, it may be difficult to verify.

I recommend having a certified technician, such as one from YourMechanic, assist you with an idle speed inspection to determine if a mass air flow sensor replacement or idle air control valve replacement may be necessary.

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: Car won't start - new hydraulic clutch and starter sounded fine

Hi there. It sounds like your battery or starter may be at fault. Test the battery with a digital tester that will provide the cold cranking amps, voltage, and current state of health. A voltage drop test performed with a...

Q: Oil change intervals

I checked your vehicle maintenance schedule and it has a normal and a severe schedule. The normal schedule says to change the oil and filter every 7500 miles and the severe schedule says to change the oil and filter every...

Q: Car runs hot - 1996 Chevrolet Blazer

Hello. If your vehicle is running hot then you need to make sure you do not let it get too hot or engine damage will result. You'll need to find out if the cause is due to a leak, water...

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...
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...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...