Cars are an essential part of our lives in the United States, especially if you don’t live in a big city that has a reliable public transportation system. A car can almost be a symbol of your freedom and independence. It allows you to go anywhere you want, whenever you want. That is why it can be a huge hassle when your car won’t start.
First Things First
Seems obvious, but the first thing you should do if your car won’t start is to make sure it is in park, then try turning it on again.
Check the Battery
If that doesn’t do the trick, then you should check to see if the problem is the battery, which is the most common reason that cars won’t start. So you should look around to see if any of your lights are still on. If they are, chances are that your battery has died and you’re going to need to jump your car. Your car might be making a click-click sound when you try to turn it on.
What you’re going to need to jump your car is jumper cables and another car. If you don’t have jumper cables ask people around you, if you’re in a parking lot, because chances are someone has them in their car. Park the two cars so that they are almost touching front ends, so it looks like they almost ran into each other. Then remove the caps from both batteries and connect the cables. Make sure the cars are turned off and in the park gear. The positive end is red and negative end is black, make sure you match them up with the batteries.
First attach both red clips to each car and then both black ends to each car. Have the person who is jumping your car turn their car on for a few minutes, and then try to start your car. Then once your car has started disconnect the cables without turning your car off, and you should be good to go. Make sure you drive around for a few minutes so the alternator can charge up your battery so it can start on its own next time. If this happens frequently, you should take your car into a repair shop to get diagnosed.
When in Doubt…
If you can’t find someone to help jump-start your car, a tow service can assist by first trying to jump start the car and then towing the vehicle to a repair garage if need be. Many towing services provide a jump-start for $40.00 (competitive pricing) within city limits, and towing begins at $50.00 outside the city limits, but it varies at different companies and in different cities.
You also might need to call a towing company if your car will not start after you jump it. This can be due to several different problems, which are best diagnosed at a car repair shop. If you are having troubles starting your car, it’s best to check your owner’s manual, as well, for more specific troubleshooting to your individual car.
Written by the staff at Tiger Towing in Columbia, Mo. Tiger Towing provides towing services to those with car trouble in and around Mid-Missouri.