You didn’t leave a car door open or a light on. (We believe you.) But your vehicle just won’t start. You turn on the ignition, and all you get is the telltale clicking noise. Bystanders will usually chip in with the usual “Your battery’s dead” and “It’s your alternator” . You won’t care about who is right, you only want your car to start.
We can settle the debate. If you can jump-start your vehicle, get to the Daks Toyota Service Center. (If you can’t, have it towed to Daks Toyota Service Center.) We’ll diagnose and fix your starting system — or help you choose a replacement battery.
An expert at Daks Toyota will take the time to thoroughly explain your vehicle’s condition, telling you which problems are urgent (and which can wait). We discuss the best options for your budget and provide a written estimate before making any repairs.
If your vehicle won’t start, it’s most likely a problem with your battery or the ignition and starting system:
Your battery is drained (but healthy): It’s the best-case scenario: you accidentally left on your lights, or some other battery-draining feature. A jump start will send you on your way, lesson learned.
Your battery is too old to hold a charge: It’s time for a new battery. If your jump start fails – or your car won’t start the next day – have your battery tested.
Your starting system needs service: It’s not your battery. There’s a mechanical problem preventing ignition, draining your battery, or keeping your battery from charging as you drive.
If a single jump start doesn’t solve your starting problems, have your battery professionally tested. If your battery is healthy, it’s time for diagnostic service, beginning with your starter and alternator.
Why won’t my car start if it’s not the battery?
If your vehicle won’t start with a fully-charged and healthy battery, the usual suspects are problems with your starter, your alternator, your ignition switch, your spark plugs or your fuses. It’s also worthwhile to clean your battery terminals and connectors if they’re dirty or corroded and see if your car will start. But the only way to be sure your battery is healthy is to test it with a voltmeter. When you have your vehicle towed to Daks Toyota, it’s the first thing we’ll check.
Why won’t my car battery hold a charge?
From the easiest-to-fix to the most complicated, here are the most common reasons your vehicle’s battery can’t hold a charge:
Corrosion around the battery terminals: The technician at Daks Toyota will visually inspect these during every courtesy check and can clean away corrosion safely.
Something’s draining your battery: Check every light switch, door (liftgate included), and lighted compartment in your vehicle. You may be leaving a door slightly ajar, or a faulty latch could appear closed but is allowing your lights to stay on overnight.
End of battery life: Every car battery has a finite charging capacity, testable with a voltmeter machine.
A bad alternator: The alternator is responsible for recharging your battery as you drive, so it’s one of the first mechanical problems to check.
Other defective vehicle parts: From the fuses to the serpentine belt.