Failing Starter: 4 Warning Signs You Must Know

8 August 2022
 Categories: , Blog


When you switch on your car, you initiate complex mechanical and electrical operations that help crank up your vehicle. Although the engine firing system consists of many mechanisms — plugs, ignition coils, and fuel injectors — without a self-starter, they wouldn't function. Your motor begins the engine firing process to kickstart your car. However, if you switch on your vehicle and the lights on your dashboard show, but your engine won't run, the motor may be broken. But in most cases, the self-starter doesn't just fail. Look out for the following four indicators and call in an auto repair expert if your motor is failing. 

1. Freewheeling

When you try to switch your engine on but only hear a grumbling noise, and the engine doesn't fire, then the self-starter may be failing. This may happen when the motor doesn't engage properly with the flywheel. When you notice this, ensure that you talk to an auto repair professional to inspect and repair or replace the whole unit. 

2. Engine Fails To Turn On

If you notice that the engine is cranking more slowly than usual or fails to crank, then your crank motor could be damaged. When this happens, you will hear the motor whirling, but your engine won't crank. This often occurs if the pinion gear fails to engage. If the engine fails to fire, consult an auto repair expert to inspect your crank motor.  

3. Dimming Dashboard Lights 

If your dash lights dim when you ignite your vehicle, your self-starter is broken. This often happens if there's a short circuit in the crank motor wiring, which causes it to use up more power and drain other systems. 

4. Smoke 

The crank motor is motorized by electricity. If your vehicle fails to crank up and you continue trying, your car's self-starter may overheat. The constant power distribution to the crank motor may cause it to overheat, and you will smell or see smoke from beneath the engine. If this happens, get in touch with an auto repairer to diagnose and repair the engine firing system. 

When you notice any of the above signs, the first thing you should do is to get in touch with a car repair technician to check the crank motor and determine why the engine won't fire. Your mechanic may advise that you repair one of the components of your self-starter or replace the entire system to restore function.

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