Doesn't Start

Tiny
1977JAGUAR
  • MEMBER
  • CHEVROLET LUMINA
Make: Chevrolet
Model: Lumina
Year: 1999
Mileage: 223319 km
Engine: 3100 V6

I came home after work last night and parked the car. About 15 minutes later my wife went out, and the car wouldn't start! There is fuel. There is oil. The headlights come on, the lights on the console come on, the radio comes on. The engine just won't turn over at all! We've had our neighbors to try and boost us, but to no avail. All we hear when we turn the ignition switch is a slight hum that dies after about 3 seconds, but all the lights and all remain on. Any ideas?
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Saturday, July 28th, 2007 AT 8:01 PM

2 Replies

Tiny
NICKN
  • MEMBER
Your starter may have tied up
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Monday, July 30th, 2007 AT 9:39 AM
Tiny
BJANDCREW
  • MEMBER
[quote="1977JAGuar"]Make: Chevrolet
Model: Lumina
Year: 1999
Mileage: 223319 km
Engine: 3100 V6

I had an issue very similar to what you are seeing and it turned out to be the neutral safety switch was faulty. Replaced the switch and the car started up.

The starting system of your car has two different voltage/amperage demand systems. One is a high amperage draw, the actual starter motor. The other system carries low amperage and is used as a triggering device for the starter motor ex: ignition switch, neutral safety switch, and starter solenoid.

Correct charging system operation is essential for proper starter operation. If your alternator is weak or not charging it will cause the battery to get low. This will cause the starter to fail.

Basic Check

a. Test for main system voltage. Turn headlights on, if they turn on and are bright the electrical system has sufficient voltage. If not, the battery needs to charged (bad alternator) or the battery is bad and needs to be replaced. Check the battery cable terminals for corrosion and clean or replace as needed.

B. Starter voltage/amperage draw test. Turn Headlight on, watch the headlights and crank the engine. If the headlights stay bright your starter motor is probably bad and needs to be replaced. If headlights dim it could mean your starter motor is shorted or your battery is weak. (Note: always replace battery cables with excessive signs of corrosion)

c. Testing neutral safety switch/clutch safety switches. Use a automotive test light check for power when the ignition switch is in the crank position. First check for power at the small terminal at the starter solenoid. If power is present the starter motor is bad and needs to be replaced. If no power is present move to the neutral safety switch/clutch safety switch. Check for power through the switch if power does not pass through switch it need to be replaced if no power is present the ignition switch is bad and needs replacing.

D. Testing the anti theft device. Most cars have a anti theft device the will not let the car turn over. If this system malfunctions the car will not crank over even after the alarm has been disabled. To test this system observe the "security" light on the dash or instrument cluster. If this light flashes while the key is in start position the security system is in failsafe mode. If you have a aftermarket alarm system in your car and you think it may be suspect locate the main system interrupted relay and bypass main circuit control. If car cranks over the alarm system is bad and needs to be replaced.

E. Checking for internal engine damage. If your engine has had a major malfunction it will not turn over. The best way to check for that condition is install a socket wrench on the front crankshaft bolt, then try to rotate, it will turn with a certain degree of difficulty. If it doesn't turn then you need to disassemble the engine to inspect or install a new engine.
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Wednesday, November 7th, 2007 AT 2:34 PM

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