Let's face it, we've all been there, you've got places to go, so you get in your Subaru, turn the key, and … drum roll please … nada! Your Subaru will not start up! This an incredibly irritating circumstance, however, do not fret, we've got the answers. There are lots and lots of factors as to why your Subaru won't start, and within this article, to spare you time we'll deal with the most typical factors as well as give you useful options to get your vehicle back on the road!
Understanding the Problem
Before we get stuck into the causes and repair options it's crucial to initially comprehend the issue. When you hop into your car and realize “my Subaru won't start”, this could be because of a multitude of issues being wrong with your vehicle. Possibly the engine is not turning over at all, perhaps it is turning over partially but then not starting, or perhaps you can hear a clicking noise when you attempt to start the engine, however in the end absolutely nothing happens. Each of these cases can indicate different issues with your car.
Common Reasons Why Your Subaru Won't Start
There are numerous reasons a Subaru won't start up. These concerns usually include a weak or dead vehicle battery, a broken alternator, starter motor problems, fuel system problems, along with electrical or wiring issues. Every one of these issues can manifest as different symptoms and require different solutions to identify and resolve, so we can get your car back on the road ASAP.
Symptoms of a Subaru That Won't Start
Being able to identify and diagnose these symptoms, will assist you in finding the root cause of the issue. For example, when you turn the key in the ignition, and you hear a clicking sound however your car still won't start, it can be an indication that there is an issue with the fuel or ignition system.
Analysis of The Reasons Why Your Subaru Won't Start
The very first step to figuring out a solution to the issue is figuring out the underlying cause of that problem, so let's dig into the most common reasons your Subaru won't start.
Subaru Battery Issues
In the majority of cases, the most common reason why your Subaru won't start is, in many cases the result of your battery, it's either dead or weak, and you need to recharge the battery or change it. The car's battery stores the power that’s needed to start the engine, and power all the electrical parts in your Subaru. Symptoms of a bad battery problem in a Subaru can be things like the vehicle being slow to crank the engine, dim headlights, or a lit-up battery caution light on the dashboard
Subaru Alternator Problems
The alternator is for charging the battery from the engine while the vehicle is running. A faulty alternator can certainly prevent your Subaru from starting as it won't have the ability to charge up the battery, from the engine, so it will deplete fairly quickly until it's totally dead and you don't realize it until you get in your Subaru and it won't start. Signs that your Subaru's alternator may be faulty include a lit-up battery or alternator warning light on the dashboard, poorly lit headlights when the engine is idling, and also a whining or grinding sound from the engine while it's running.
Subaru Starter Motor Failures
The starter motor handles turning the engine over (cranking) when you start your Subaru. If the starter motor is defective in some way then the engine may not crank, and your Subaru can't start. You can tell if your starter motor has a problem or not usually by listening for a clicking noise when you turn the key or a grinding noise throughout the start-up, or your vehicle can start, but only intermittently then the starter motor may very well be the problem.
Subaru Fuel System Complications
We’re not talking about when you just run out of gas here, but the fuel system itself having complications. Your Subaru uses a combustion engine, and therefore to start and run, it needs a mix of enough fuel and air. If your Subaru problems are the result of a faulty fuel system, this can be a clogged fuel filter or a broken fuel pump relay, which could indicate the engine may not be getting the fuel it requires to get the vehicle up and running.
Subaru Electrical System or Wiring Problems
Today’s modern Subaru cars rely greatly on electronics, which can mean there are lots of things that can potentially break and cause problems. Even in an older vehicle, you can have regular issues such as blown fuses, spark plug problems, a faulty ignition switch, a broken sensor and more. These can be some of the many electrical reasons your car won't get started. Symptoms of a circuitry or electrical issue can differ widely but can often include the engine not cranking, or your Subaru can start however just intermittently or various warning lights come on the car’s dash. To properly diagnose and repair these kinds of problems, you will need the abilities of a skilled car mechanic in your area or online.
Solutions & Repair Tips
Once you have diagnosed what the reason for your Subaru troubles are. The next logical step is obviously to attempt to fix it. Here are some pointers for the common issues we've covered so far.
How to Troubleshoot and Fix Battery Issues in a Subaru
If you suspect it's possible a battery issue is the culprit as to why your Subaru has difficulty starting, then the first thing you must do is examine the battery and check the battery terminals. You want them to be clean, not corroded, and tightly connected. If you find that the terminals are indeed 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 deplete quickly again in the not-so-distant future. You can make use of a multimeter as a way to test the life of the battery to find out if it’s worth saving or if it needs replacing. You can ask a professional car mechanic online or locally to provide guidance on this.
How to Diagnose Alternator Problems in a Subaru
If the alternator is what you think is the reason, you can test it. If you can get the vehicle started temporarily (you may need to jump-start the car for that), but when it’s going, let the vehicle run, and while the engine is running, disconnect the positive terminal of the battery. It's likely the result of an issue with the alternator if you discover your Subaru dies pretty quickly when you disconnect the positive terminal. You should be aware however that this method can be dangerous, and may harm the delicate electronic elements in your Subaru, so it's always best to seek advice from a professional car mechanic in your area or online, prior to ever trying this.
How to Identify Starter Motor Failures in a Subaru
It's likely an issue with your starter motor if you hear the clicking sound but the engine doesn't crank. In this case, the solution is to have the starter motor changed for a new one by a professional mechanic.
How to Deal With Fuel System Problems in a Subaru
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 vehicle. You should be able to hear a humming noise for a few seconds. It may be there is an issue with the fuel pump if you are unable to hear this sound. If you notice your Subaru is hard to start, it stalls, or it has poor acceleration, it could be because of a clogged fuel filter. Both of these will likely need a reliable car mechanic in order to effectively fix.
How to Fix Electrical or Wiring Issues in a Subaru
If you think it's an electrical wiring or electrical system problem, first check the fuses associated with the ignition system, and replace any that have actually blown. If your Subaru starts after this, then it was a successful, low-cost, and simple fix! If the vehicle doesn't start, even intermittently, it could be an issue with the ignition switch itself. If different warning lights are visible on your dashboard, it might be a faulty sensor. These issues can be extremely intricate and a professional car mechanic is most likely needed to identify and have it properly repaired.
As my dad always stated “Prevention is better than cure”, so here are the best ways to make sure you can avoid any Subaru starting problems again!
Routine Maintenance of Your Subaru:
Regular upkeep of your Subaru is essential to preventing future problems. This includes things like routine oil changes, checking the battery, cleaning the terminals, replacing the fuel filter as advised/required and having your vehicle examined by a professional car mechanic regularly. If you are unsure about the regular maintenance tasks required for your specific automobile, you can seek advice from a mechanic locally or online.
Drive Your Subaru Regularly:
If you happen to leave your Subaru off for long periods of time without taking it for a spin now and again, the battery will run out of charge as it's not receiving any electrical charge from the engine running being in use. Try to drive your car regularly to keep the battery from draining. Take it for a fast spin to make sure there is still a charge in the battery if you remember you have not driven your Subaru in a while. Worth noting: letting the battery fully drain, is also damaging to the long-term life of the battery, try not to do this.
Pay Attention to Warning Signs:
If you observe anything odd like uncommon noises, a difference in how it drives and the performance, or warning lights showing on your Subaru's dashboard, don’t just ignore them and get on with your day. These are usually early indications of an issue and it’s best to be dealt with ASAP before they end up being larger issues later. Chat with a car mechanic in your area or online about these warning symbols and get advice on if they need to be addressed.
When to Ask a Subaru Mechanic Online
If you're either short on time, want a specialist Subaru mechanic on hand assisting and advising you, or you've tried to fix it for yourself, however in spite of your best efforts your vehicle refuses to start, then talking with a Subaru mechanic online can be a great option.
Advantages of Online Mechanic Services
Online mechanic services, like ours in the bottom right of this page, provide several benefits. You can get professional Subaru mechanic advice 24×7 and without leaving your house, which is especially useful if your vehicle will not start and is stuck in the driveway. You can also save money as online mechanic consultations are much less expensive than a physical visit to a local mechanic near you. Plus, you can get the answer rapidly, which is excellent if you're in a hurry, require a second opinion, or you simply like having a specialist Subaru mechanic on hand.
How Services Like MechanicAnswer.com Can Assist You
MechanicAnswer.com connects you with accredited professional mechanics who can offer instantaneous aid, guidance, and suggestions. You have the ability to explain the issues you are having with your car, ask a Subaru mechanic limitless questions, and even upload images and videos so you can actually show the mechanic what you mean. You can talk to them through online chat or by telephone call, whichever you choose. The Subaru mechanic online will help you detect the issue, advise you on what are the best options for your specific scenario, and even guide you through easy maintenance and repair work step by step.
To wrap up when your Subaru won't start, it can be a total bummer and a massive inconvenience. However, knowing what may be triggering 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 huge help. Keep in mind that regular upkeep is key to avoiding all kinds of car issues.
Should your car troubles persist after this piece, remember to speak to a mechanic using our online service.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What should I do if my Subaru won't start?
First of all, do not panic. Try to identify any signs that could indicate a problem, such as unusual noises, warning lights on the dash, or changes in performance. The cause of the issue is most likely among the most common causes discussed in this guide. If you can't find the problem yourself, you will need the help of a Subaru mechanic in your area or online.
How to tell if my Subaru wont start because of the battery?
Signs of a battery issue in a Subaru consist of the engine being slow to crank, dim headlights, and lit battery warning lights on dash. You can also check the battery terminals to see if they are clean, not corroded, and firmly connected. If the battery is weak or old, it might be best to just change it.
How can I prevent my Subaru not starting issues?
In order to ensure this annoyance never ever takes place again, routine maintenance is key. This includes things like oil changes, examining the battery and cleaning it's terminals, replacing the fuel filter as recommended / required, and getting your Subaru inspected by a mechanic often. It's also a great idea to drive the vehicle routinely so the battery remains charged.
Can I ask a mechanic online if my Subaru wont start?
Yes, you can. An online mechanic service like ours can supply immediate expert Subaru mechanic assistance and guidance, without you having to leave your house. If your Subaru wont start and is stuck in the driveway, this is particularly beneficial.
How can services like MechanicAnswer.com help if my Subaru fails to start?
We connect you with licensed professional Subaru mechanics who can supply guidance on your specific situation. You can inform them about your vehicle problems, ask unlimited questions, and even submit images and videos so you can correctly explain and show the problem. The mechanic will be able to help, troubleshoot, identify the issue, recommend the best course of action and guide you along the way.