Why won't my car start? ?

Earlier this week I was driving on a highway until my car refused to accelerate and I had to pull to the side. When this happened the battery light went on. I drive a 2008 Toyota Camry LE. The tow guy let me know that it's more than likely my alternator rather than my battery. 

Seeing as how I couldn't start the car without a battery I ended up getting both a new battery and replacing the alternator as well as (from suggestion of a close friend) a new starter/spark plugs. 

Despite all this the car refuses to turn over. It doesn't even sputter. We did all this because for some reason the OBD we have won't work on my car? The weeks before this incident when I would start my car the only issue was the car idling high initially then dying down after 30 secs. Any other reasons why it wouldn't start? 

7 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Does the starter turn the engine?

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    No one here has a crystal ball, But, yoiu should have taken it to a Competent mechanic in first place; a Loose Belt can "look" like a "bad alternator". Cheaper than   shot gunning. Check Angies List for a good oine,

    A friend replaced battery, starter, alternator, trying to fix a "no start" Should have checked Head Lites while turning key. Turns out, the starter cable had loose terminal. Didn't affect charging.No Start,, cant read codes? Borrow a timing light,crank. See if timing is in ballpark. Might have slipped  timing.Check all connections to all sensors. Make sure boot tight to air cleaner and MAF sensor. Get under   fuel tank,  have friend turn ign on. Hear a buzz? No? Then U need new fuel pump or bad connection/blown fuse. Check all fuses, pull  them  Out   (ONE at a TIme-!!) and Look,. Press all the way in. They sometimes rattle lose.A charge problem can be quickly found at Auto Zone. Or with a $5 meter.

    EDiT; "Battery fusible link" or rather you probably have a Fuse,is Ok OR  you wouldnt even get a :"charge lite " On. I dont think the starter would even turn if mains fuse out----you would get juice thru primary cable to solenoid,but none to the key switch or solenoid winding to crank.

    EDIT: Turning  over is Trying to start, at least a backfire. Cranking is starter Is turning engine.. Just because starter doesn't "seem" to turn it can be Seized Engine,   or bad electrical To starter. Or ground off ring gear teeth at that particular spot.

  • Fred G
    Lv 4
    1 month ago

    First off this board is just entertainment and you won't get your car fixed here.. Then we have advice from thebax who contradicts his own answer and then says others have no clue.. REALLY..?  "car refuses to turn over it means the starter isn't working. Cranking and turning over mean the same thing".. At least I get a laugh out of some of this.. 

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    A close friend recommended you replace a lot of **** you didn't need?

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    First off, lets get some terminology straight. When knowledgable people say that the engine "won't turn over", that means the starter won't even turn the engine over at all; i.e. it won't "crank" and go "RarRarRaRrARrAR" like it's trying to start. So, does your engine actually turn over without starting, or isn't it doing anything at all?  I think you mean that it actually dioes turn over but it won't start, but that's not clear. If nothing happens whern you turn the key, have someone check the fusible link to be sure it hasn't blown (it's a type of in-line fuse near the battery).

    .

    You didn't say whether the battery light came on before the car wouldn't accelerate, or whether it came on after the engine stopped running when you pulled to the side. Which is it? You haven't made that clear either. If it came on after the engine stalled, that's normal. If it came on while the engine was still running, that would indicate a failed alternator. 

    .

    Third, if your battery was less than  4 years old, you should have had it tested before just replacing it. You might have purchased a new battery without needing to.

    OBD  scanners don't diagnose battery and alternator problems. If you simply replaced the alternator without getting it bench tested, you might have purchased a new one without needing to. Pulling and replacing parts can get expensive when you don't know what the underlying problem is. Guessing doesn't cut it.

    .

    Now lets get back to what happened when you pulled over. Would the engine still idle after you pulled over, or did it stall completely? Did the steering wheel and brakes get stiff as you were slowing down, or did they work normally until you stopped?  Have you verified that the gas tank isn't empty? Fuel gauges can be faulty. If it's not empty, did anyone verify that fuel is getting to the cylinders when the engine is turning over? Has anyone verified whether the spark plugs are getting electricity and making a spark? Has anyone verified that the air filter or air intake isn't blocked? 

    .

    You've got some more diagnostic work to do. 

  • 1 month ago

    Check all your fuses and the battery fusible link.

  • CB
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    The battery light came on because the engine died  - epic fail and waste of money. 

    The tow guy told  you crap based on an invalid observation from you. You need to take the vehicle to a competent mechanic - tossing parts into it willy nilly is just a waste of money.

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