Q: When I turn on the starter switch it will click, but will not start.

asked by on December 01, 2016

When I turn on the starter switch it will click, but will not start.

My car has 150000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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What you are describing is likely a fault in the starter motor circuit which includes all of the wiring, fuses, relays, ignition switch, starter solenoid, starter, and battery. Somewhere in all that, there is a fault. Occasionally, the fault is a bad spot on the starter armature (the starter motor, itself) and if by chance that is the case if you tap the starter with a rubber mallet you can sometimes "vibrate" the armature off of the bad spot, turn the key and get it to work. If that trick works, that means you need a new starter motor (or a new rubber mallet to carry around). Of course you could have a dead battery. A crude test of that is whether the headlights turn on really brightly, with other accessories on, too, but to really reliably test the battery you need to do a load test (a Mechanic or battery shop would do that). If the battery is not dead (if it’s dead, you could carefully do a jump start but be careful as batteries will explode if you short circuit them...really the best thing to do is load test the battery and if the battery is bad just simply install a new battery but be sure to test the charging system after installation. If the battery is good and there is power to the starter and all connections are resistance free, then you likely have a bad starter motor. During one diagnostic visit a certified professional from YourMechanic could identify the issue and resolve it for you, so if you would like to set up a mobile appointment with YourMechanic, where the mechanic comes to your location, please feel free to do so. If you have any other concerns or questions, by all means please let us know.

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