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Q: Sometimes my car starts immediately and sometimes it takes between 5 and 10 tries.

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My 2000 Chevy Lumina will sometimes start immediately but in the last couple of days it sometimes takes up to 5 to 10 turns of the key to get it started. My mechanic told me he thinks I have an ignition switch problem and to take my car to a locksmith for repair. Do you think this is the source of the problem?

My car has 210 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Your mechanic’s diagnosis and explanation c...

Your mechanic’s diagnosis and explanation could well be correct. This is classic symptom behavior of a failing ignition switch. The contacts become "burned" over time and over lots of "start" cycles. The repair is to replace the ignition switch.

If you hear a "click" under the hood when you have an unsuccessful "start" sequence, the problem is more likely the starter solenoid, a heavy-duty relay on the starter itself that takes a small current from the ignition switch and turns on a much heavier current directly to the starter. If this is the case, the starter should be replaced (the solenoid is part of the starter assembly).

I would recommend having a professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, perform an inspection to determine why your car is not starting and suggest the necessary repairs.

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