Chevrolet Cruze Won’t Start: Top 14 Causes & Solutions

As a certified auto mechanic with more than twenty years of experience, I’ve seen a good share of Chevys that can’t start. Hi, I’m Robby and I get how frustrating this can be for people, especially when you have things to do and places to be. But don’t panic! In this article, I’ll share the inside scoop on the most common reasons your Chevy Cruze won’t start, in addition to actionable tips to get you back on the road speedily.

With advanced certifications in electrical systems and engine performance, I’ve found and fixed just about every “no start” issue out there. I’ll talk you through how to analyze your Cruze’s symptoms, zero in on the root cause, and determine if it’s a do it yourself repair or best left to a professional mechanic. I’ll also give recommendations for products that can help you solve your issue, as well as make sure it doesn’t happen again in the future.

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They help 1000s of people every day in your position, save a lot of time, money and risk getting their vehicle repaired. Having a friendly expert mechanic guiding and advising you every step of the way, is the best thing you can do. You will have your issue fixed faster, and likely cost much less.

Quick Solution Alert! 🚗💡

To save you time, this might be the quick solution you need.

An online mechanic can help you solve the issue much faster, and save money doing it.

They help 1000s of people every day in your position, save a lot of time, money and risk getting their vehicle repaired. Having a friendly expert mechanic guiding and advising you every step of the way, is the best thing you can do. You will have your issue fixed faster, and likely cost much less.

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You can read on, or get instant help with your issue. We have the best online mechanics, but before asking them, we recommend asking our AI mechanic first as it’s 100% FREE.

9 out of ten times the AI mechanic is able to help you solve the problem for free, and if it’s not, you can chat with a human mechanic on the next page anyway.  Try it for free below. 

Dead Battery in a Chevrolet Cruze 

car wont start but battery is good
Image Credit: MechanicAnswer.com

The most common reason a Chevy doesn’t crank is a dead or drained battery. Your battery provides the initial burst of electricity to turn over the engine and get it running.

Signs of a dead battery:

  • Silence upon turning the key – no engine cranking
  • Accessories not powering on
  • Hard time starting in cold weather

The Fix: Keep jumper cables available for a dead battery emergency. Jump starting your Chevrolet Cruze using a good battery or portable charger can deliver enough charge to get it cranked.

You can also try cleaning dirty battery terminals if they prevent a good connection. If problems continue, have your battery tested – it may need replacing if worn out.

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Energizer Jumper Cables for Car Battery, Heavy Duty

Bad Alternator in a Chevrolet Cruze 

is my alternator stopping my car from starting? If your battery tests fine but your Chevy Cruze still won’t crank, the culprit may be a faulty alternator. This key component charges your battery when running and powers the electronics.

Clues of a bad alternator:

  • Battery warning light coming on
  • Electronics dimming
  • Difficulty starting, particularly following 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.

Bad or Fouled Spark Plugs in a Chevrolet Cruze 

Auto mechanic and spark plug Spark plugs ignite the fuel/air mixture in the cylinders to power your car. When they are fouled or worn out, your Cruze may not start due to no spark.

Clues of bad spark plugs:

  • Poor fuel economy
  • Rough idle
  • Engine misfiring

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 in a Chevrolet Cruze

My car wont start, is it a faulty ignition switch? Problems with ignition components like the switch, lock cylinder, fob, or wiring can prevent your Chevrolet from starting.

Signs of ignition trouble:

  • No noise upon turning key
  • Dashboard flickering
  • Key won’t turn

The Fix: For fob issues, replace the battery. For other problems, have the system diagnosed and repaired professionally. If you need a new Chevy key fob you can get one online here.

Starter Failure in a Chevrolet Cruze

Starter motor problems in car The starter motor engages when you turn the key to crank the engine. If it’s worn out, your Chevrolet Cruze may not turn over.

Symptoms of a bad starter:

  • No noise upon turning key
  • Clicking but no cranking
  • Unusual grinding or whining

The Fix: Have your starter inspected and replaced if faulty. This requires the help of a professional mechanic to diagnose and repair.

Not in Park or Neutral in a Chevrolet Cruze

transmission not in park so car won't start If your gearbox isn’t in Park or Neutral, your Chevrolet’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 in a Chevrolet Cruze

my car wont start but clicks, could it be the fuel filter? A clogged fuel filter can restrict fuel flow to the engine, preventing your Chevrolet Cruze from starting.

Signs of a clogged filter:

  • Difficulty starting
  • Engine sputtering
  • Decreased fuel economy

The Fix: Change the filter per your schedule 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 in a Chevrolet Cruze

faulty fuel pump The fuel pump transfers gas from the tank to the engine. If it fails, your Chevy won’t start due to no fuel.

Symptoms of a bad pump:

  • No pump noise upon turning key
  • Difficulty starting
  • Stalling when running

The Fix: Have your pump tested. If faulty, a mechanic near you will need to replace it.

Compression Issues in a Chevrolet Cruze

auto mechanic doing a tune up Proper compression is needed to combust the air/fuel mixture. Low compression from damage can cause a no start.

Symptoms 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.

Broken Timing Belt in a Chevrolet Cruze

broken timing belt car The timing belt synchronizes the camshaft and crankshaft. If it snaps, the valves and pistons won’t be timed properly and your Chevrolet Cruze won’t start.

Signs of a bad timing belt:

  • No start
  • Unusual clicking sound

The Fix: Have your belt checked and replaced immediately if broken. This requires a local professional mechanic to replace the timing belt of your Chevy Cruze.

Loose or Detached Battery Cable in a Chevrolet Cruze

122654fa c6ae 4f2a 98d9 84b95ea016ca A detached battery cable can disrupt electricity current in your Chevy. This common problem can prevent starting.

Signs of a bad cable:

  • Corroded terminals
  • Power loss from moving 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.

Faulty Relays in a Chevrolet Cruze

faulty relay switch preventing car from starting Relays control power to components like the starter, fuel pump, and computer. Failure can prevent your Chevy Cruze from starting or running right.

Diagnosing 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

car wont start because of no fuel 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.

Engine Flooding

Overfill fuel causing car to not start 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 flush 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

Ask the mechanic With so many potential issues for a no start issue, it can be difficult to identify the exact cause yourself. In some cases, getting help from an experienced mechanic can save you time 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

Local Garage mechanics 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 Chevrolet Mechanic Near You

mobile mechanic to get my car starting again Having a qualified mobile mechanic come to your Chevrolet Cruze 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.

3. Chat with a Chevy Mechanic Online

when to ask a mechanic This is a superb option for most DIYers or car buff. It’s often  a straightforward fix you can do on your own, like replacing or recharging the battery. In these instances, if you are aware of what to do in a stepwise fashion, you can do it yourself, you do not have to pay a mechanic locally. Alright, it’s your lucky day, an online mechanic can supply all the assistance, advice, and advice you require, instantly by online chat. You can then carry out the simple fix yourself.

The best online mechanic we suggest is JustAnswer, and through our link, you can get a free trial of their service for just $5, ask endless questions for a week, get the assistance you need, and you don’t have to continue the assistance after that. We adore JustAnswer for this reason, professional auto mechanic help for just $5 is an unmatchable price.

The qualified mechanics at JustAnswer’s Ask a Mechanic service are accessible 24/7 to provide remote diagnostics and advice. The benefits of querying a mechanic online include:

  • Convenience: Get help from home without having to schedule an appointment or wait at a shop.
  • Fast replies; Mechanics respond in minutes with likely issues 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 assistance; Experienced licensed mechanics have the expertise to address Chevy Cruze|Chevrolet Cruze 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 Cruze or your Chevrolet CSV CR8 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 “Chevrolet wont start then starts later“, consider our live Chrevrolet mechanic service.  In just minutes, you can leverage expert Chevrolet knowledge to help get your beloved Cruze fired up again.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) When a Chevrolet Cruze Won’t Start

Chevrolet Cruze won’t start but lights come on?

If your Chevrolet Cruzes lights illuminate but it still won’t start, the issue may not be related to the battery. More than likely there is a problem with the starter motor. Investigate if you hear any clicking noises when attempting to crank the key. If so, the starter motor is attempting to activate but failing. Have a mechanic inspect the starter motor – it may need to be fixed or swapped out.

Chevrolet Cruze won’t start but has power?

When your Chevrolet Cruze has power (lights, radio etc work) but fails to start, there may be a fuel delivery problem. Issues like a faulty fuel pump relay could stop fuel getting to the engine. Without enough fuel, combustion can’t happen and the engine won’t start. Check around the back seat when cranking the key – you should hear the fuel pump prime for a few seconds. If not, have a mechanic check the fuel system.

Chevrolet Cruze won’t start but battery is good?

If your Chevrolet Cruze’s battery checks out OK and is fully charged, but the car still refuses to start, the underlying cause is likely electrical. Potential culprits include a bad ignition switch, broken sensor, or wiring problems. As electrical issues can be tricky, diagnosis by a professional mechanic is best. They can correctly pinpoint the specific electrical fault and have it repaired.

Chevrolet Cruze won’t start just clicking?

When you turn the key and there’s only a clicking noise but the engine fails to turn over, the most common cause is a faulty starter motor. The click comes from the starter solenoid trying to engage the starter motor, but the motor itself fails to crank the engine. As the starter motor needs physical fixing or swapping out, consult with a reliable mechanic to get your Chevrolet Cruze running again.

Why is my Chevrolet Cruze car not cranking but I have power?

If your Chevrolet Cruze won’t start but the lights and electronics come on, the most likely causes are issues with the starter motor, ignition switch, or neutral safety switch. Faulty ignition components prevent the engine from turning over even when battery power is present.

Why does my Chevrolet Cruze have power but doesn’t crank?

When your Chevrolet Cruze has power to the lights and accessories but won’t crank when turning the key, the problem is often a bad starter motor or related wiring problem. This prevents the starter from activating to turn the engine over for starting.

What would make my Chevrolet Cruze car suddenly not start?

Unexpected no-start issues can occur from loose battery cables, fuel pump or relay failure, broken timing belt, or an empty gas tank. These critical issues can arise without warning and prevent your Chevrolet Cruzes engine from starting.

Why doesn’t my Chevrolet Cruze 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 delivery issue preventing combustion. Your Chevy’s engine needs air, fuel, compression and spark to run.

What are symptoms your Chevrolet Cruze starter is bad?

Symptoms of a bad starter include no noise when turning the key, a single click but no cranking, unusual grinding noises, and slow/labored cranking. These indicate starter failure and the need for replacement by a local mechanic.

Why doesn’t my Chevrolet Cruze start but battery and alternator is good?

If the battery and alternator check out, common causes are bad spark plugs, blocked fuel filter, blown fuse, immobilizer problem, and starter relay failure. Complete diagnostics of all electrical and fuel systems is needed by a qualified local mechanic.

Interesting Facts About the Chevrolet Cruze

Did you know that the Chevrolet Cruze was the first car in its class to offer built-in 4G LTE Wi-Fi? That’s right, you can turn your Cruze into a mobile hotspot and connect up to seven devices to the internet at once. It’s like having a Wi-Fi router on wheels! And get this – the Cruze also comes equipped with a Teen Driver feature that allows parents to set speed alerts, volume limits, and even receive a report card on their teen’s driving habits. It’s like having a built-in driving coach! Plus, with its sleek design and impressive fuel efficiency, the Cruze is the perfect combination of style and practicality. No wonder you’re itching to get it started and hit the road!

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Which Mechanic Suits You?

  1. Chat with an Online Mechanic to get instant, unlimited help and advice for 1 full week, for just £5.
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Which Mechanic Suits You?

  1. Chat with an Online Mechanic to get instant, unlimited help and advice for 1 full week, for just $5.
  2. Get in-person help from a Mobile Mechanic. We recommend YourMechanic. They will come to you and fix your vehicle at a time that suits you. Instant free quote online below. We recommend the online mechanic first, as it’s cheaper, and you may not need an in-person mechanic.

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Which Mechanic Suits You?

  1. Chat with an Online Mechanic to get instant, unlimited help and advice for 1 full week, for just $5.
  2. Get in-person help from a Mobile Mechanic Near You. They will come to you and fix your vehicle at a time that suits you. If there are none near you, you will be redirected to the online mechanic.

Which Mechanic Suits You?

  1. Chat with an Online Mechanic to get instant, unlimited help and advice for 1 full week, for just £5.
  2. Get help from a Mobile Mechanic. We  recommend Fixter. They will come to you and fix your vehicle at a time that suits you. Instant free quote online below. We recommend the online mechanic first, as it’s cheaper for you, and you may not need an in-person mechanic.

Which Mechanic Suits You?

  1. Chat with an Online Mechanic to get instant, unlimited help and advice for 1 full week, for just $5.
  2. Get in-person help from a Mobile Mechanic. We recommend YourMechanic. They will come to you and fix your vehicle at a time that suits you. Instant free quote online below. We recommend the online mechanic first, as it’s cheaper, and you may not need an in-person mechanic.

Where Can I Find My VIN?

Your vehicle’s unique Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) can be found on the title document, the vehicle registration, and the insurance policy. It is a series letters and numbers like this as example: WAUGC0896JA235262. The VIN can also be located on the following locations on the vehicle itself:

how to find VIN on vehicle