Sitting in your idle Chevy, turning the key, and hearing nothing but silence can be very aggravating. A Chevy that won't start leaves you stuck on the side of the road trying to figure out the problem. Luckily, some common problems lead to Chevy Chevelle not starting, many of which can be fixed DIY or quickly by a mechanic.
In this comprehensive guide, we will examine the fourteen most common reasons your Chevrolet Chevelle doesn't start and offer useful suggestions to get your car running again.
The most common reason a Chevy won't start is a dead or weak battery. Your battery provides the initial jolt of electricity to turn over the engine and get it running.
Signs of a dead battery:
- Silence upon turning the key – no engine cranking
- Electronics not powering on
- Difficulty starting in cold weather
The Fix: Keep jumper cables on hand in case of a dead battery situation. Jump starting your Chevrolet Chevelle using a good battery or portable charger can supply enough juice to get it started.
You can also clean dirty battery terminals if they prevent a good connection. If problems continue, have your battery tested – it may need recharging if worn out.
If your battery tests fine but your Chevrolet Chevelle still won't turn over, the issue may be a bad alternator. This key component charges your battery when running and energizes the electronics.
Signs of a bad alternator:
- Battery warning indicator illuminating
- Lights dimming
- Hard time starting, especially after short trips
The Fix: Get your alternator inspected ASAP by a mechanic. A bad alternator can quickly drain your battery. This will need to be replaced by an experienced mechanic.
Faulty Spark Plugs
Spark plugs ignite the fuel/air mixture in the cylinders to run your car. When they are dirty, bad, or corroded, your Chevelle may not start due to no spark.
Signs of bad spark plugs:
- Poor fuel economy
- Rough idle
- Engine sputtering
The Fix: Spark plugs need periodic replacement as they degrade. Most last 30k+ miles. Have your plugs inspected and swap any bad ones. Using quality gas prevents buildup.
Ignition System Issues
Issues with ignition components like the switch, lock cylinder, fob, or wiring can prevent your Chevy from starting.
Symptoms of ignition trouble:
- No noise upon turning key
- Dashboard malfunctioning
- Key won't turn
The Fix: For fob issues, replace the battery. For other problems, have the system inspected and repaired professionally. If you need a new Chevy key fob you can get one online here.
The starter motor engages when you turn the key to crank the engine. If it's worn out, your Chevy Chevelle may not turn over.
Symptoms of a bad starter:
- No noise upon turning key
- Clicking but no turnover
- Unusual noises
The Fix: Have your starter inspected and replaced if faulty. This requires the help of a professional mechanic to diagnose and repair.
Transmission Not in Park/Neutral
If your gearbox isn't in Park or Neutral, your Chevy's safety features will prevent it from cranking.
The Fix: Shift into Park/Neutral and try once more. If it only starts in one gear, you may have a faulty neutral safety switch needing repair. This will need to be repaired by a local mechanic near you.
Clogged Fuel Filter
A blocked fuel filter can restrict fuel flow to the engine, preventing your Chevy Chevelle from starting.
Signs of a clogged filter:
- Hard time starting
- Engine misfiring
- Decreased fuel economy
The Fix: Change the filter when due or if thought clogged. Use quality gas and replace often. You can have a local mechanic repair this for you, or repair it yourself, maybe with the help and guidance of an online mechanic.
Faulty Fuel Pump
The fuel pump draws gas from the tank to the engine. If it fails, your Chevrolet won't start due to no fuel.
Signs of a bad pump:
- No pump noise upon turning key
- Hard time starting
- Stalling after starting
The Fix: Have your pump tested. If faulty, a mechanic near you will need to replace it.
Proper compression is required to combust the air/fuel mixture. Low compression from worn parts can lead to a no start.
Signs of compression issues:
- Hard time starting
- Rough idle
- Lack of power
The Fix: Testing can confirm low compression. For diagnostics and carrying out this repair, a local mechanic is usually needed and will have to replace the worn engine components.
Timing Belt Failure
The timing belt synchronizes the camshaft and crankshaft. If it snaps, the valves and pistons won't be timed properly and your Chevrolet Chevelle won't start.
Signs of a bad timing belt:
- No start
- Unusual ticking noise
The Fix: Have your belt inspected and fixed right away if broken. This requires a local professional mechanic to replace the timing belt of your Chevy Chevelle.
Detached or Loose Battery Cable
Signs of a bad cable:
- Corroded terminals
- Power loss from wiggling cables
- Frayed wiring
The Fix: Clean corroded terminals and tighten loose connections. Damaged cables need replacement. You can get expert Chevy mechanic advice and guidance online or with a local mechanic.
Relays control power to components like the starter, fuel pump, and computer. Failure can prevent your Chevy Chevelle from starting or running right.
Identifying relay problems:
- Swap relays to test
- Have relays checked by a mechanic
The Fix: Faulty relays must be replaced, often after a larger diagnostic. You will likely need a local mechanic to diagnose if the faulty relay is preventing your Chevy from starting.
Empty Gas Tank
Running your tank bone dry can cause a no-start due to lack of fuel. This seems obvious however it often happens because of an inaccurate or broken fuel gauge.
The Fix: Keep your tank at least 1/4 full to avoid unexpected emptying. If issues persist, have your fuel sender unit checked by a professional mechanic.
Sometimes an engine can flood with too much fuel, preventing starting due to wet spark plugs. This is most common in older carbureted engines.
The Fix: Press the gas pedal fully and crank briefly to clear the system so the plugs can spark. If problems continue, have the carburetor adjusted by a professional local mechanic.
Top 3 Ways To Get a Mechanics Help
With so many possible reasons for a no start issue, it can be tough to identify the exact problem yourself. In some cases, seeking assistance from an experienced mechanic can be time-saving and give you peace of mind.
These are the 3 ways to get a mechanic's help in starting your Chevy again.
1. Local Auto Repair Garage Near You
This is the regular way to get it repaired, however, it can be very wasteful in time and money, transporting your vehicle to them, plus expensive garage fees as they often have expensive overhead costs etc, that they have to pass on to the customer.
2. A Mobile Mechanic Near You
Having a qualified mobile mechanic come to your Chevy and repair it on-site can be a great time and money saver. The best mobile mechanics we can recommend in the USA are RepairSmith and YourMechanic. We have recommended them thousands of times, and they both have great prices, services and coverage across most of the USA.
In the UK the best mobile mechanic we can recommend is Fixter, they will come pick up your car, take it get repaired, and deliver it back to you. You can get an instant free quote on their official websites by clicking the name. We have tested, vetted, and can heartedly recommend each of these services to get your Chevy Chevelle|Chevrolet Chevelle starting again ASAP.
3. Chat with a Chevy Mechanic Online
This is a fantastic choice for most DIYers or car buff. It's frequently a simple fix you can do yourself, like changing or recharging the battery. In these situations, if you know what to do step by step, you can do it on your own, you don't need to pay a mechanic on-site. Alright, it's your fortunate day, an online mechanic can provide all the help, guidance, and advice you need, right away by online chat. You can then execute the easy mend yourself.
The finest online mechanic we propose is JustAnswer, and through our link, you can get a free trial of their assistance for just $5, ask endless inquiries for a week, get the help you need, and you do not need to keep going with the assistance after that. We love JustAnswer for this purpose, expert auto mechanic assistance for just $5 is an unmatchable price.
The qualified mechanics at JustAnswer's Ask a Mechanic service are available 24/7 to provide remote diagnostics and recommendations. The perks of consulting with a mechanic online include:
- Convenience: Get help from home without having to schedule an appointment or wait at a shop.
- Fast responses; Mechanics respond rapidly with potential reasons and solutions based on your description.
- Cost savings: Pay per question rather than full diagnostic fees – great for basic troubleshooting.
- Documentation: All conversations are saved in writing, providing helpful reference.
- Expert knowledge; Experienced licensed mechanics have the knowledge to address Chevy Chevelle|Chevrolet Chevelle no starting issues with ease.
You will get matched with the best auto mechanic for your particular case, it doesn't matter if it's a Chevelle or your Chevrolet Chevette won't start, the expert Chevy mechanic you are paired with, will be the best for the job.
So next time you find yourself searching online for something like “what does it mean when your Chevy cranks but wont start“, consider our online Chrevrolet mechanic help service. In just minutes, you can access expert Chevrolet knowledge to help get your beloved Chevelle started again.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Why is my Chevy car not cranking but I have power?
If your Chevrolet won't start but the accessories and dashboard power on, the most likely causes are issues with the starter system, ignition switch, or neutral safety switch. Faulty ignition components prevent the engine from cranking even when battery power is present.
Why does my Chevy have power but doesn't crank?
When your Chevy has power to the electronics and dashboard but won't crank when turning the key, the problem is often a bad starter motor or related wiring issue. This prevents the starter from engaging to turn the engine over for starting.
What would make my Chevy car suddenly not start?
Unexpected no-start issues can happen from disconnected battery cables, fuel pump or relay failure, broken timing belt, or an empty gas tank. These critical problems can arise without warning and prevent your Chevy's engine from starting.
Why won't my Chevy car start but the battery is fine?
With a good battery, the problem may be a bad alternator not charging the system, bad spark plugs providing no ignition, or a fuel flow issue preventing combustion. Your Chevy's engine needs air, fuel, compression and spark to run.
What are symptoms your Chevy starter is bad?
Symptoms of a bad starter include no noise upon turning the key, a single click but no cranking, unusual grinding sounds, and slow/labored cranking. These indicate starter failure and the need for replacement by a local mechanic.
Why doesn't my Chevy car start but battery and alternator is good?
If the battery and alternator check out, common culprits are bad spark plugs, blocked fuel filter, blown fuse, immobilizer issue, and starter relay failure. Complete diagnostics of all electrical and fuel systems is needed by a qualified local mechanic.