How to Unravel Your Car’s Electrical Problem When You’re in a Hurry

There's nothing worse than a car that won't start in the morning when you're in a rush to get somewhere. You simply don't have time for this, but rather than losing your temper or wasting additional time, what if you can figure out the problem right now? If this is an electrical issue, it could be down to one of three different components. Where should you start, as you try to unravel the issue?

Where to Look First?

Your car relies on three individual electrical gadgets to work properly and they have to fire in order so that you can trigger the engine to work. To try and pinpoint the issue, you have to look at each of these components in sequence.

Battery First

Always start with the battery, as this is the component that is more likely to fail than the others. A car battery should last you for several years, but it will ultimately fail, and when it does, it's relatively cheap to replace. The battery can only store power for a limited amount of time and needs to be always recharged by the alternator.

One of the signs of a failing battery could be a low-down, humming noise when you're trying to start. Try jumpstarting the car with cables, to get the engine running. If the engine will not restart after you subsequently stop it, the battery won't hold its charge and it's time to replace.

Alternator Failure

Sometimes you will hear a growling noise, rather than a humming sound and this could point to the alternator. You may also notice a burning smell. When jump starting your car, does the engine die immediately when you disconnect the cables? This signifies the alternator is on its way out and you may also notice that your headlights have been going dim recently. This was an early warning sign of impending alternator failure.

Starter Motor Issues

If all you hear when trying to start the car is a clicking noise, this means the starter is at issue. No matter how hard you try to jumpstart the car, you will find it won't turn over.

Steps to Take Now

If you've been able to pinpoint the problem and get the car jump started, make sure that you take some action really soon to rectify the issue. If the starter motor has stopped you cold, get in touch with a professional mechanic, so that you can get on the road as soon as possible.

Contact a local car service for more information and assistance.