Why My Car Starts Sometimes and Sometimes It Doesn’t? [SOLVED!]

A fading or dead battery, frayed or corroded connecting cables, a defective alternator, or a problem with the starter are the common culprits when a vehicle won’t start. It can be challenging to tell whether a battery or alternator issue is at hand. Here’s how to determine who the culprit is.

Owners frequently experience intermittent car starting as a problem. It means your car operated normally up until you stopped it and started it again; occasionally, it just stands still. Your confusion over the potential causes of this symptom results.

Yes, there are a few major factors that contribute to this issue. It could originate from the battery, a sensor, fuel, or another component of the vehicle. You can identify the source of the issue and choose the appropriate solutions by understanding how each element functions and influences the others.

You can use the advice in this article to fix the problem that my car sometimes starts and sometimes doesn’t. In less than 5 minutes, this article will provide comprehensive understanding of everything you should look for when facing a starting problem. We are confident that after reading it, you won’t need to seek for another info. Let’s find out, then!


  • When a car won’t start, it may be due to a weak battery or a malfunctioning coolant temperature sensor.
  • Your car may stall out before it even starts if the fuel tank is almost empty.
  • Additionally, the engine oil you use may cause your car to delay before starting in cold weather.
  • Your starter motor may be defective, it may be old, or you may have other problems if your car won’t start.

There are instances when the causes are small and simply need a short cure, and other times when they are more serious and expensive to address. Let’s look at all the possible causes why your car occasionally wouldn’t turn on.

Why My Car Starts Sometimes and Sometimes It Doesn’t?

Electrification issues (Sensor for the crankshaft’s position.)

The first factor that starts to mind when a car won’t start occasionally is the crankshaft positioning sensor. You cannot start your car if the sensor is not working correctly.

Your car will restart as a result, saving you a lot of cranking.

Using an OBD2 scanning tool, you can identify this issue. However, there is no assurance that the battery is not harmed, even if it somehow still functions and ultimately your car starts to drive.

Why My Car Starts Sometimes And Sometimes It Doesn’t
Why My Car Starts Sometimes And Sometimes It Doesn’t

Battery (Voltage of a battery)

Insufficient battery voltage is one of the other potential causes of a car that occasionally starts and occasionally doesn’t.

Make sure there is enough electricity available to start your car. To assess and ascertain the voltage your battery possesses, use a voltmeter.

Your motor should be turned on at a voltage of between 12.4 and 12.6 volts. You should recharge your battery and restart the engine to check if it works if it’s below 12.4 volts.

Cables And Wires Issue

Any issues with the wires and cables could stop the electricity from flowing and make it difficult for your car to start. It can be corroded battery terminals, defective cables, or damaged or loose connections.

If you don’t perform routine mechanical checks, you can experience one of these symptoms more often.

The operation of the battery terminal might potentially be impacted by dirt or debris. Cleaning the battery with a warm water and baking soda solution will solve this issue.

Make sure the mixture doesn’t come in contact with anything else underneath the filler caps while removing pollutants, dirt, and debris.

Motor Issue (start-up motor)

Sometimes the car starts, sometimes it doesn’t because of a defective starter motor. If you hear a loud grinding noise, the flywheel’s mounting bolts are unsecured and unable to move.

Tighten them to ensure that the motor’s parts all function as they should.

The mounting nuts are snug, but why does my car start sometimes and not other times? you might wonder at times. The flywheel may not be cranking the engine sufficiently, in which case.

If something is wrong with the equipment’ movement, you can check it by spinning the pinion gear.

Solenoid Starter

An erroneous solenoid may cause the engine compartment to repeatedly click. In addition, there may be audible noise under the capote, which indicates that something is stuck there and is connected to an inactive magnet coil.

When you try to start your car, if you hear any of these odd noises, it may be a sign that the starter solenoid is broken and the starting mechanism isn’t working.

For the starting system to function properly, make sure the starter solenoid is completely attached and the wires are clean.

Engine issues (Ignition coils for engines)

My car sometimes starts and sometimes it doesn’t be caused by damaged or worn-out engine ignition coils.

An internal combustion engine’s power transfer relies heavily on this coil. Without it, electricity cannot reach the spark plugs to start the car.

Flywheel of an engine

Between the engine and the transmission is where you’ll find the flywheel. By turning the pinion gear, it turns the engine. To examine the mechanism, remove the starter motor, shift into neutral, and rotate the crankshaft.

The pulley, which also causes issues with the alternator or serpentine belt, is most likely the source of the issue. In addition, the flywheelstarts fractured or missing teeth may contribute to inconsistent starting of the car.

Fuel filter-related issues (Fuel filter is dirty)

A clogged fuel filter may be the source of your car’s starting issues. The gasoline flow into the pipes to start the car may be blocked by this malfunctioning fuel filter.

In order to force the fuel through the blocked filter, greater pressure is therefore needed in the pump. The pump might be damaged if it is overworked, which explains why my car sometimes starts and other times it doesn’t.

Injectors Problems

The fuel is transferred to the engine by the fuel injector. Improper beginning issues might arise when the dispersion is poor (not at the optimum pressure level).

You are more likely to experience problems with fuel delivery and starting your car if there is direct damage to the injectors.

Other Engine issues.

My car’s issue, which occasionally starts and occasionally does not, also stems from the engine in addition to electrical and fuel delivery issues.

Low engine compression might result in power loss and make it challenging to start the generator. It indicates that the engine is progressively dying as a result of the power reduction.

You need a compression tester to determine the compression. The cylinder needs a compression between 90 and 100 to function effectively. The engine should be opened and checked if the result is less than 90.

Ideally, it’s just a valve issue; if not, the issue is deeper and requires additional investigation and repair.

How Can I Fix the above issues?

There are various approaches to solve the issue of why my car sometimes starts and other times doesn’t.

Once you’ve determined that the defective battery is to blame, be sure to charge it sufficiently and, if you can, examine and clean the internal connections. Consider getting a new battery if your battery is sick.

The car has trouble starting when the air filter is dirty because it prevents air from passing through. As soon as you see that it is oily and black, change it.

If the starter is the source of the issue, check for any burned wires or corroded or broken parts. If necessary, swap out the starter.

Similar to this, take your car to the mechanic for expert repair if the fuel pump or ignition switch are malfunctioning. In other words, you should replace any parts that need to be changed frequently.

Do a compression test on the engine to determine what is causing the intermittent starting of my car. Its lifespan will soon come to an end if it does not succeed. The problem can be fixed by switching the engine.

To find out whether the coil or fuel injection is causing the car to start occasionally, scan your vehicle for cores using an OBD2 scanner tool. The simplest solution is to take your car to a mechanic to get the issue fixed.

What Is The Cost Of The Fixing?

It will cost about $200 to replace the spark plugs or batteries in your car. You should budget up to $500 when an electrical component, like the starter or coil, is at fault.

The job including the valves will run you about $1000. To safeguard your car and save money, you can learn how to clean the idle air control valves.

Other engine repairs, including rebuilding or replacing it, cost $2000 and $5000, respectively.

Often Asked Questions on My Car Starts Sometimes And Sometimes It Doesn’t

Q) What could cause a car to sometimes start and sometimes not?

A: A fading or dead battery, frayed or corroded connecting cables, a defective alternator, or a problem with the starter are the common culprits when a vehicle won’t start. It can be challenging to tell whether a battery or alternator issue is at hand. Here’s how to determine who the culprit is.

Q) What Indicates A Poor Starter?

A: Listen for any odd noises a defective starter makes to identify it. It can have a high-pitched, grinding sound. However, if your battery or alternator aren’t working properly, you can hear these noises. Before you examine the starter, make sure your battery is fully charged.

Q) How Can I Tell If My Fuel Pump Will Be Bad?

A: Usually, one or more of these symptoms indicate a bad fuel pump. The engine spat and stopped; the pump stalled and became hot; the car surged; the engine lost power; it was difficult to start the car; you could hear whining coming from the fuel tank;

Q) What may be the root of inconsistent starting issues?

A: Common causes include a dirty ground or other electrical connection, corroded starter switch contacts, unclean contacts inside the starter solenoid, and weak power cables. Therefore, fixing it requires cleaning all of the contacts, connections, and associated parts.

Q) How Can I Tell If My Alternator Or Starter Is the Problem?

A: To identify the issue, take these steps.

• Turn the key to test whether the engine will start. If not, a discharged battery or a problematic starter may be to blame. A clicking noise should be heard.

• Remove the cap and give the battery connectors a little shake.

• Lightly tap the starter with a hammer, then restart the engine.


We’ve just looked at the issue—my car occasionally starts and occasionally doesn’t—along with its three primary causes and specifics. Your car may not start properly if there is a problem with the battery, fuel system, or engine. You can find a variety of answers to problems, depending on the circumstance. The harmed parts can be repaired or replaced. Keep your battery power at a high level, keep other parts clean, and avoid corrosion to avoid expensive costs.

Also Read: 

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