Buick Won’t Start? Here’s Quick Solutions to the Most Common Causes

Ask Buick Mechanic

Table of Contents


Let's face it, we've all been there, you've got places to go, you get in your Buick, turn the key, and … drum roll please … nothing at all! Your Buick won't start up! This a super frustrating circumstance, however, don't fret, we've got the answers. There are lots and lots of reasons as to why your Buick won't start, and for this article, to spare you time we'll cover the most common factors along with giving you practical solutions to get your car back on the road ASAP!

If you're short on time, rather than reading, you’re always welcome to talk to a live mechanic 24×7 and get immediate help and guidance on figuring out what it is and fix the problem, by clicking the “ask a mechanic” button by the bottom right of this page.

Understanding the Problem

Car Won't Start?

Before we get stuck into the causes and solutions it's crucial to first comprehend the issue. When you realize to yourself “my Buick wont start”, this could be because of various issues being wrong with your vehicle. Maybe it’s a case where the engine is not starting at all, possibly it is cranking partially but then not starting, or possibly it's making a clicking sound when you attempt to start the engine, but in the end, absolutely nothing happens. Each of these annoying situations can point to various issues with your car.

Common Reasons Why Your Buick Won't Start

There are numerous reasons that a Buick fails to start. These issues usually consist of a dead or weak car battery, a bad alternator, starter motor issues, fuel system problems, as well as electrical or wiring complications. Every one of these problems can manifest as various symptoms and require different solutions to detect and fix, so we can get your car back on the road ASAP.

Symptoms of a Buick That Won't Start

Having the ability to recognize and diagnose these signs, will help you in finding the root cause of the problem. For example, when you turn the key in the ignition, and you hear a clicking sound however your vehicle still will not start, it can mean that there is an issue with the fuel or ignition system.

Analysis of The Reasons Why Your Buick Won't Start

The very first step to finding a solution to the problem is figuring out the underlying cause of that problem, so let's look into the most common causes as to why your Buick won't start.

Buick Battery Issues

Auto mechanic replacing car batteryIn the majority of cases, the most common reason why your Buick can't start is often due to a bad battery, it's either weak or dead, and you have to recharge your car’s battery or change it. The vehicle's battery stores the electricity that’s needed to start the engine, and power all the electrical components in your Buick. Signs of a weak or dead battery issue in a Buick, are things like the car being sluggish to crank the engine, weak or dim headlights, or a lit-up battery alert light on the dashboard

Buick Alternator Problems

is my alternator stopping my car from starting?

The alternator is tasked with charging the battery from the engine while the car is running. A damaged alternator can certainly prevent your Buick from starting as it will not have the ability to charge up the battery, from the engine, so it will be depleted all the way down till it's completely drained and you don't realize it until you get in your Buick and it won't start. Symptoms that the alternator may be faulty can be a lit up battery or alternator warning light on the dashboard, dim headlights when the engine is idling, and also a whining or grinding noise from the engine while its running.

Buick Starter Motor Failures

my car wont start is the starter motor?

The starter motor is responsible for turning the engine over (cranking) when you start your Buick. If the starter motor is broken in some way then the engine will not crank, and your Buick wont start. You can tell if your starter motor has a problem or not typically by listening for a clicking noise when you turn the key or a grinding noise throughout the startup, or your car only starts intermittently then the starter motor may very well be the problem.

Buick Fuel System Complications

my car wont start but clicks

We’re not talking about when you just run out of gas here, but the fuel system itself having complications. Your Buick uses a combustion engine, and because of this to start and run, it needs a proper mix of fuel and air. If your Buick problems are part of a faulty fuel system, this might be a clogged fuel filter or a broken fuel pump relay, which could indicate the engine might not be getting the fuel it needs to get the car started.

Buick Electrical System or Wiring Problems

can electrics be a reason a car wont start

Today’s modern Buick's rely heavily on electronic components, which can mean there are lots of things that can potentially break and cause problems. Even in an older model, you can have typical problems such as blown fuses, spark plug issues, a broken ignition switch, a faulty sensor, and more. These can be some of the many electrical explanations as to why your car can't start. Signs of a wiring or electrical issue can differ greatly but can typically include the engine not cranking, or your Buick can start however only intermittently or various warning lights show on the car’s dash. To effectively identify and fix these kinds of issues, you will need the skills of an experienced car mechanic in your area or online.

Solutions & Repair Tips

When you have figured out what the reason for your Buick being unable to start is. The next logical step is obviously to attempt to fix it. Here are some tips for the typical problems we've covered up until now.

How to Troubleshoot and Fix Battery Issues in a Buick

my car wont start i think its the battery

If you suspect it's possible a battery problem is the reason your Buick has trouble starting, then the first thing you must do is check the battery terminals. You want them to be clean, not corroded, and securely connected. If you find that the terminals are corroded you can try to clean them up with a mix of baking soda and water. If the battery is just old or weak, you will have to replace it, otherwise, even if you charge it up enough to start the vehicle, it will likely die again in the not-so-distant future. You can make use of a multimeter as a battery tester to see if it’s worth saving or if it needs replacing. You can ask a professional car mechanic online or in your area to provide guidance on this.

How to Diagnose Alternator Problems in a Buick

car wont start, jumped and started alternator

If you’re thinking that the alternator is the cause of your car's starting troubles, you can test it. If you can get the car started temporarily (you may need to jump-start the car for that), but when it’s going, let the vehicle run, and while it's running, disconnect the positive terminal of your car's battery. If you notice your Buick dies immediately, then it's most likely due to a problem with your car's alternator. You should be aware however that this method can be risky and dangerous, and might damage the delicate electronic components in your Buick, so it's necessary to seek advice from an experienced car mechanic locally or online, before ever trying this.

How to Identify Starter Motor Failures in a  Buick

car wont start starter and battery good

It's most likely a problem with your starter motor if you hear the clicking sound but the engine doesn't crank. In these cases, the solution is to have the starter motor replaced by a professional mechanic.

How to Solve Fuel System Problems in a Buick

clogged fuel filter car wont start

If you suspect the issue to be because of a fuel system problem, try and listen for the fuel pump when you turn the key to the “on” position, before starting up the car. You should be able to hear a humming sound for a few seconds. If you are not able to hear this noise, then it may be there is an issue with the fuel pump. If you observe your Buick is difficult to start, it stalls, or it has bad acceleration, it could be a result of a clogged fuel filter. Both of these will likely require a reliable car mechanic in order to correctly repair.

How to Repair Electrical or Wiring Problems in a Buick

fuses to check when car wont start

If you suspect it's a wiring or electrical system issue, initially inspect the fuses related to the ignition system, and replace any that have actually blown. If your Buick starts after this, then it was a successful, inexpensive, and simple repair! If the car doesn't start, even intermittently, it might be cause for concern with the ignition switch itself. If different warning lights are visible on your dashboard, it could be a faulty sensor. These problems can be very complicated and a professional car mechanic is likely needed to diagnose and have it properly repaired.

Preventive Steps

As my dad always said “Prevention is better than cure”, so here are some preventative measures to ensure you hopefully avoid any Buick starting pains ever again!

Routine Upkeep of Your Buick:

Regular maintenance on car to prevent starting issues

Regular maintenance of your Buick is essential to preventing future problems. This includes things like routine oil changes, checking the battery, cleaning the terminals, changing the fuel filter as advised/needed, and of course having your car inspected by a reliable car mechanic regularly. If you are not sure about routine maintenance tasks needed for your particular car, you can speak with a mechanic locally or online.

Drive Your Buick Regularly:

drive regular to avoid car troubles

If you happen to leave your Buick in the driveway for long periods of time without taking it for a spin now and again, the battery can drain as it's not getting any charge from the engine running regularly. Try to drive your vehicle regularly to keep the battery from draining. Take it for a quick spin to make sure there is still a charge in the battery if you remember you haven't driven your Buick for a while. Worth noting: letting the battery completely drain, is also damaging to the long-term life of the battery, try not to do this.

Take Notice Of Warning Signs:

Check Engine Control Light on a Vehicle Dashboard

If you observe anything odd like uncommon noises, a difference in how it drives and the performance, or alert lights are now visible on the dash, don't disregard them and get on with your day. These are usually early warnings of an issue and it’s best to be resolved ASAP before they become larger problems down the line. Talk to a car mechanic in your area or online about these problems and find out if they need to be dealt with.

When to Ask a Buick Mechanic Online

If you want to save time, want a professional Buick mechanic on hand assisting and advising you, or have tried to fix it by yourself, but regardless of your best efforts your vehicle won't start, then talking with a Buick mechanic online can be an excellent option.

Advantages of Online Mechanic Solutions

Happy mechanic repairing car looking at camera

Online mechanic services, like ours in the bottom right of this page, offer several advantages. You can get professional Buick mechanic suggestions 24×7 and without leaving your house, which is especially beneficial if your car will not start and is stuck in the driveway. It can also help you save money as online mechanic consultations are more affordable than a physical visit to a local mechanic near you. Plus, you can get answers quickly, which is terrific if you're in a hurry, require a 2nd opinion, or you simply prefer having a professional Buick mechanic on hand.

How Solutions Like MechanicAnswer.com Can Assist You

Ask a mechanic online about my car not starting

MechanicAnswer.com connects you with licensed professional mechanics who can offer instantaneous assistance, guidance and recommendations. You have the ability to describe the issues you are having with your car, ask a Buick mechanic limitless questions, and even upload photos and videos so you are able to show the mechanic what you mean. You can talk to them by means of online chat or by telephone call, whichever you choose. The Buick mechanic will help you diagnose the issue, guide you on the best course of action for your specific circumstance and even assist you through basic maintenance and repair work step by step.


In a nutshell, when your Buick won't start, it will likely be a major disappointment and an enormous hassle. However, having a firm grasp of what might be causing the issues, having the ability to troubleshoot them, and knowing what actions are needed in each case, and where to get help if required, will be a big help. Remember that routine upkeep is key to avoiding the majority of car issues.

Even if this guide was informative but your car isn't running smoothly, remember you can ‘ask a mechanic free chat‘ on our platform.

What should I do if my Buick will not start? 

Firstly, don't panic. Attempt to identify any signs that could indicate an issue, such as unusual sounds, warning lights on the dash, or changes in performance. The reason for the problem is likely one of the typical causes discussed in this guide. If you can't find the issue yourself, you will require the help of a Buick mechanic in your area or online.

How to tell if my Buick won't start because of the battery?

Signs of a battery problem in a Buick include the engine being slow to crank, dim headlights, and lit battery warning lights on the dash. You can also check the battery terminals to see if they are clean, not corroded, and tightly connected. If the battery is weak or old, it may be best to just change it.

How can I prevent my Buick not starting issues?

In order to make sure this inconvenience never ever takes place once again, regular upkeep is crucial. This includes things like oil changes, examining the battery and cleaning it's terminals, changing the fuel filter as recommended or required, and getting your Buick checked by a mechanic regularly. It's also an excellent idea to drive the vehicle regularly so the battery remains charged.

Can I ask a mechanic online if my Buick won't start? 

Yes, you can. An online mechanic service like ours can offer instantaneous professional Buick mechanic help and guidance, without you having to leave your house. If your Buick won't start and is stuck in the driveway, this is especially helpful.

How can services like MechanicAnswer.com help if my Buick won't start?

We link you with certified expert Buick mechanics who can provide recommendations on your specific circumstance. You can tell them about your vehicle issues, ask unlimited questions, and even upload images and videos so you can correctly explain and show the problem. The mechanic will have the ability to assist, troubleshoot, identify the problem, recommend the best course of action, and guide you along the way.

Chat With a Mechanic?

24/7 Expert Mechanics To Help Solve Any Issues Your Having.


Chat With a Mechanic?

24/7 Expert Mechanics To Help Solve Any Issues Your Having.