By Tom Smith
Dut, Da, DA! Uh-oh. You just sat down in your driver seat, put the key in the ignition and your car won’t start. What do you do?! Don’t worry. Frank’s Servicenter is here for you!
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Why Won’t My Car Start?
A car has a lot of parts; some mechanical, some electrical. So, ignition failure can mean a few different scenarios, but here’s a quick intro to the parts involved and how they’re supposed to function.
The corroded battery of a Nissan Altima.
Is My Car Battery Bad?
Even if it isn’t an electric vehicle, a modern car or truck isn’t just a gasoline motor. There’s a complex electrical system running throughout the entire body. It allows you to see in your trunk, listen to the radio and - most important - start your car. The battery is the central point in this circuit. It powers the starter which, essentially, jumpstarts your motor every morning, evening, or whenever you start your car. A battery can go bad after use, have a manufacturing defect or just get old (this one is common). So if your car battery is more than four years old, motor down to Southampton, PA and have us check it out. You don’t want to find out it’s bad the hard way!
The ignition and key for a Chevy Cruze sedan.
What’s My Starter?
A gasoline or diesel motor (called Internal Combustion Engines) need to get started before they begin to work. Back in the day a hand crank was necessary to turn over the motor by hand! Today a small electric motor (called a Starter) does this for us. The starter is essentially a little electric motor attached to your engine (like a huge toy train). If your starter is bad that may also prevent your car from starting.
The starter on a GTI Volkswagen.
What Does An Alternator Do?
All that starting and stopping is a lot for your car’s battery. Just like us, it needs to recharge. A battery doesn’t put it’s feet up and watch TV though. A part called the Alternator produces electricity from the movement of your motor and funnels it back into the battery - almost like if you could eat, sleep and run a marathon all at the same time! (Actually don’t try that...)
Other than these components, you may need to service your fuel filter, gas tank or ignition switch. So if you’re feeling stuck in the mud - or even just the driveway, call Frank’s Servicenter at: 267-762-1217 and we’ll tell you just how much we can help.
Read more about starting troubles here.
Watch this video by Chris Fix: