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.

A: Hi, thanks for writing in. It can be either...

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

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

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: What is a throttle body filter

Code P0068 can have to do with the Throttle Position Sensor. It can also be due to a Mass Air Flow sensor fault. Usually this code can be set due to a vacuum leak, either somewhere in the air intake...

Q: Master/Slave Cylinder

If you have fluid leaking on the floor then this is from the clutch master cylinder leaking past its seals. I would recommend replacing the clutch master cylinder and the clutch slave cylinder as a set since the master cylinder...

Q: Overdrive light blinking and doesn't shift right unless it is warmed up

Hi, thanks for writing in. Usually when the overdrive light is flashing, this means that the electronic overdrive will not work. I would recommend having your transmission inspected by a qualified professional to determine if the overdrive issue is electronic...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
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...
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...