Q: Trouble starting and accelerating

asked by on August 24, 2016

My car is very slow to accelerate. Anywhere from starting speed to about 55 mph, the car struggles to develop speed. There is also an occasional starting problem so I have to jump-start the car. Are these problems connected? How can I fix this?

Catalytic Converter Replacement $279.51 - $3103.51 Get a Quote
Tune-up $186.15 - $922.17 Get a Quote
Car is not starting Inspection $79.99 - $89.99 Get a Quote

Hi there, thanks for writing in about your 2002 Hyundai Elantra. There are several possibilities here that require further research. First off, it sounds like your transmission is in "limp" mode, which causes it to start off in 2nd gear (poor acceleration). A clogged catalytic converter (low power output) or simply an engine tune-up problem could also be contributing to this. Finally, there is also a possibility that you also have a weak battery or charging system which can cause poor starting. If you’d like to have this done, a certified mechanic from YourMechanic can come to your home or office to inspect the starting issue and pinpoint the fault.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

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

What others are asking

Clicking noise is much louder when accelerating. What's could that sound be?

The clicking sound may possibly be rocker arms that may need to be adjusted. When these are incorrectly adjusted or too loose, this causes a bit of play in between the rocker arm and the valve spring. As the engine...

So I have a hyundai sonata se push to start. My car won't turn on, power is working, I push tof start but it won't crank. I don't

Hi there. It sounds like you have a failed starter. However, without proper testing there is no way to be 100% sure. I suggest having the battery tested first with a digital battery tester that provides current voltage, cold cranking...

Car won't start

Hello. If you are able to "turn over" the engine (using, say, the starter motor) but the distributor rotor is stationary, that means the gear on the distributor shaft is sheared off. However, you are also indicating that the battery...

does a cracked exhaust manifold cause oil to leak

A damaged exhaust manifold does not affect engine oil consumption. Of serious concern though is the possibility that the cracked manifold is leaking exhaust gas (including poisonous carbon monoxide) into the passenger cabin, typically through the firewall and vents. If...

Air conditioning leak

Hello. If your AC system is suddenly not blowing cold, then it may indeed be low due to a leak. In some cases, you can take a look at all of the AC system hoses and connections and if any...

My power steering is making a ridiculous noise, and it has for some time now.

If you have a noisey power steering pump when turning and replacement pump did the same noise then you need to remove the pump reservoir and check the inside screen to see if it is plugged up with dirt and...

My car engine is currently shot, and needs a replacement, is there any engines I can snap fit inside with little too know mods?

You can put just about any engine into your car but it will need to have modifications done to fit the engines. The 2000 through 2005 models have the same engine. I recommend putting in the same engine as what...

My Hyundai Santa Fe jerks and the rpm needle drops and it’s like the engines off but it’s still running and you can barely acceler

It sounds like you may be having a fuel system issue. I would recommend having the fuel pressure tested by a qualified professional to determine the exact cause of this issue. Consider YourMechanic as this can be done at your...

My problem is Check Engine Light on. Cruise control does not work, loses power on hills, as if it does not want to pull hill.

Hi there. From the description you have provided, there is several possibilities for your vehicle's drivability problems. Your vehicle's Check Engine Light may help diagnose the lack of power and inoperative cruise control. Accessing the vehicle's computer for codes stored,...

Related articles

Top 10 PZEV Cars for Eco-Friendly Drivers
Teddy Leung / Shutterstock.com The whole idea of a PZEV (that is, a partial zero-emissions vehicle), seems paradoxical. You’d think it’d have to either be zero-emissions or not in the category at all. But as contradictory as...
The Best Used Cars to Buy If You’re an Athletic Coach
If If you are an athletic coach, you need a used vehicle with tons of room to transport gear. Once in awhile, you may have to take a player or two along with you as well. What this means is...
The Best Used Cars to Buy If You Get Motion Sickness
For For people that suffer from motion sickness, even on the shortest car trip, riding in a vehicle can prove to be unbearable. What’s great is that there are a number of cars on the market that can help to...