How can I get my car to start?
December 19, 2013 1:27 PM Subscribe
My much-babied, recently inspected 2008 Scion xD won't start! When I got in the car yesterday morning and turned the key in the ignition, it made a buzzing/grrrr sound and some of the dash lights come on -- but that was it, the engine wouldn't turn over. I tried again about a half hour ago, and it did start up after a little hiccup, so I thought maybe yesterday was a fluke. But when I got in the car just now to actually go somewhere, it refused to start up again. Now the radio won't even turn on, though most of the dash lights still do. I tried rolling it down the hill, pumping the breaks, all the stuff non-mechanically-minded me can think of. Help! What can I do right now to get it to start and to get the engine to turn over?
posted by rue72 to Travel & Transportation (18 answers total)
It only has about 40,000 miles on it. I got it new back in 2007, and it's the car I learned to drive on -- I love it! It's been completely dependable until now, and has only needed the most basic possible repairs -- to replace a blown tire, new brake pads, etc. It gets an oil change every few months, and I've only driven it about 1,000 miles since the last one -- in fact, I got the car inspected just a couple weeks ago to change its registration to my new location (it passed with flying colors). The only thing I've been putting off is pumping its tires for winter, but I can't imagine that's what's causing it not to start now!
I've used it for commuting (mostly freeway) on and off, and crisscrossed the country in it a couple times. On a 4,000 mile road trip this summer it had trouble in the heat and through the Rockies, but it didn't even have a hiccup otherwise. The only thing I can think of is that I've had it out in LA for the past few years, and this is the first cold snap it's gone through since it's been back East (since this fall). But it's 50 degrees out today and it's been sitting in the sun, so what could be frozen?
I have responsibilities that keep me from being able to rely completely on public transportation, and I am also pretty broke for the foreseeable, so a quick and cheap solution I can do myself would be the best possible answer...I'm hoping that's the case!
What can I do to get my car to start?