Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Sudden starting problem that happens sporadically

asked by on

The car has starting problems which happen after I drive the car, let it sit for a short while and then attempt to continue driving. Then it fails to start again. The mechanic had the starter replaced but it didn't help. The problem occurs sporadically and at random. On some ocassions, I would be able to start it, turn it off and they start it up again without any problems, whereas, sometimes it takes my even half an hour to restart it. The mechanic couldn't help because the car starts and runs great when I take the car there. Any ideas?

Hi there, thanks for writing in about your 1992 Oldsmobile 98. It is possible that the starter relay is failing. This relay is different than the starter solenoid that was likely replaced with the starter. The starter relay has electrical contacts which can burn or corrode with use, can fail with the erratic behavior you describe, and is relatively inexpensive to replace. It is also possible that the starter solenoid (which is part of the starter assembly) has a failure condition when hot. When you predict the problem to happen again or as it occurs more frequently, have a certified technician, like one from YourMechanic, come to your home or office to diagnose the starting issue and help you move forward with appropriate repairs.

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
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Sudden starting problem that happens sporadically

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: Clicking sound when trying to start the car

It sounds like you will need to have the starter checked. You'll need to check if the click is coming from the starter solenoid on the starter or the relay in the power relay box in the engine compartment. Also,...

Q: 3800 series 2 gm motor does the rwd aluminium intake manifold suffer the same famous coolant leak as the fwd cars my car is 1999

Hi there. Well, to be honest, the biggest reason why these intakes are famous for failing is due to consumers pushing the edge on overheating issues. Although the plastic (polymer) intake tends to be susceptible to causing head gasket damage,...

Q: Starting in humid morning

On a marginal ignition system, condensation on ignition system wires and components could cause voltage to bleed away just enough to make starting difficult during the humid conditions you describe. If the problem persists, the recommended service is a no...

Related articles

P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
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...