Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Why doesn't my car start up?

asked by on

I changed the battery with a new one and it started right up but only lasted for a week and continue to do the same. All my interior lights work including the radio but when I turn the key in the ignition it has no crank and the car does not start up. Can it be my starter or my alternator?

My car has 129000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi, thanks for writing in. It can be either. If the alternator is not charging properly, it can cause even a new battery to drain down. usually when we say "dead battery", it’s not so "dead" that there isn’t enough power to turn lights or the radio on, but there isn’t enough power to crank the engine over. That takes much more power than the lights or radio do. Also, the starter can be a problem as well. If the battery is fully charged and it does not crank, try to tap the starter lightly with a hammer while a friend is turning the key. If it starts, then the starter probably has a "dead spot" in the windings. If you would like help, consider having an expert automotive technician from YourMechanic come to your home or office to inspect and diagnose this issue for you, and make or suggest any repairs as needed.

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

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: Ps pulley making noise, what do I replace?

Hi there. How much tension was placed on the belt during adjustment/installation? All drive belts have a specific range of tension that can be measured with a belt tension gauge tool, however experienced technicians usually use their feel of the...

Q: it will turn over but won't fire

You would need to scan test the engine computer to see if you are getting a crankshaft and camshaft sensor signal to the computer. If you are not then replace the sensor that is not working. If you need some...

Q: When a/c was on, steam from under hood and a/c went warm on a hot day and on another day came out cool for a several minutes

The source of the steam should be the first thing repaired. It is highly probable that once the leak is repaired, the A/C system will begin to work again. There are two fluid sources under the hood that can create...

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...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.