car won't start. any guesses?

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  • car won't start. any guesses?
  • john_drummer
    Member

    just pulled in to mrs_d’s place of work to pick her up on way home. I was early for a change so I turned the engine off. bad idea. now it won’t start. nothing at all from the starter motor.

    my uneducated guesses are in order of most likely (in my uneducated mind):
    a) starter motor
    b) immobiliser
    c) battery – but it was good enough to run all lights & radio, even a very flat battery does turn the starter a bit
    d) totally seized engine for reasons unknown – it’s not the oil –
    or
    e) it’s French, so it’ll be an electrical problem. ’56 plate Citroen C4 1.6 petrol.

    anyway, it took me 15 minutes in the phone queue to get through to the RAC, an 0800 number from my mobile phone; estimate is up to 2 hours before the patrol can get there.

    We got a taxi home, I’ll go back when RAC rings with an ETA.

    nick1962
    Member

    Flat battery ,broken alternator my bet

    konadad
    Member

    e, b, c, a, d in that order

    not helpful really but if you sat there with lights and radio on waiting?

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Subscriber

    broken canard, I bet

    john_drummer
    Member

    I sat there with lights off, radio on before I tried starting it. now I’ve left it there, lights & radio off. HMRC office car park so it’s safe enough until RAC call with an ETA, at which point I’ll go back. it’s only a 5min / £4 taxi ride

    I reckon it’s a broken haw he haw

    seba560
    Member

    Battery is my guess and the freezing temperatures won’t have helped it.

    Gooner_Dom
    Member

    Battery, it probably had a knackered cell, the cold would have killed it for good, that’s my bet.

    Does the starter motor solenoid ‘click’?

    Could be that the starter is jammed in the ‘engaged’ position – this happened to me on my French car.

    Put it in gear and rock it back / forwards a couple of times, then try again.

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    It’s on strike.

    Have you considered arbitration?

    uselesshippy
    Member

    Had something similar on a truck recently.
    Stereo etc worked, but when it was turned over, nothing.
    Turned out to be a loose earth from battery too the chassis.

    Markie
    Member

    It’s on strike.

    Have you considered arbitration?
    As it’s French, I think the only possible course of action is to give in to its demands.

    jota180
    Member

    What was it McMillan said?

    “In the end the French will always betray you”

    john_drummer
    Member

    no click from starter solenoid, nothing. could be that too (f)

    john_drummer
    Member

    I’m not sure it’s the battery though – it started fine four times earlier today, and it’s just driven 20+ miles on motorway & main roads through Bradford.

    Premier Icon tomhoward
    Subscriber

    😆 @ scaredypants….

    broken canard, I bet

    😀

    TuckerUK
    Member

    As it’s French, I think the only possible course of action is to give in to its demands.

    Very disrespectful to the large number of French people that didn’t give in, nor agree to their government giving in, and without whose help WWII might not have ended how it did. Never forget the German Blitzkrieg was an entirely new method of waging war (a method that is now standard practice in warfare), and only one country managed to stop their advance – us – and only then because of the English Channel.

    Whether one measures by total losses or percentage of loses per population, France sacrificed more in WWII than (e.g.) the US (who come 42nd in deaths as a percentage of population, and 16th in total losses). Of course few know this because unlike the US, the French don’t feel the need to constantly bang on about the huge contribution they made.

    project
    Member

    You need to show the car who is boss.

    [video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78b67l_yxUc[/video]

    bigyinn
    Member

    Does anything electrical work? Interior lights, ignition lights, anything?
    I have parked a car in the past, switched it off, then gone to go out in it again 10 minutes later, dead!
    Stole the wife’s car’s battery and off i went. Har har har!
    Sometimes batteries do just die. Lots of short trips with the lights on, rear window demist, fans blowing, lights on and wipers on can drain a battery VERY quickly esp if its a few years old and its cold outside.

    Inbred456
    Member

    First port of call would be to check the positive strap to the battery, check for fatigue etc.

    andrewh
    Member

    it’s only a 5min / £4 taxi ride

    Why did you drive then if it’s so close? That’ll teach you to walk! 🙂
    .

    Never forget the German Blitzkrieg was an entirely new method of waging war (a method that is now standard practice in warfare), and only one country managed to stop their advance – us

    The Russians managed to halt it eventually.
    .
    Anyway, potentially useful answer, we had a mystery ‘car won’t problem’ Tried everything, got it to local garage, they couldn’t start it. Next to main dealer, took them ages. It turned out to be the battery in the key fob, the imobiliser wasn’t disarming, have you checked that? No sign of life but radio lights etc working fine.

    stuarty
    Member

    Blown fuse or coil pack

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I would not point the finger at the battery. Started fine several times, AFTER all the cold weather, then after a drive it’s suddenly so dead it won’t even light the dash lights? Not likely.

    I would think it’s not the immobiliser either – doesn’t that just stop it firing, rather than stop it turning over and coming on?

    Good place to start would be the fuse box perhaps. Note that there may be other big main fuses outside of the fuse box, but they should be labelled reasonably clearly.

    Premier Icon simmy
    Subscriber

    anyway, it took me 15 minutes in the phone queue to get through to the RAC, an 0800 number from my mobile phone; estimate is up to 2 hours before the patrol can get there.

    Quick tip for when your out and about http://www.saynoto0870.com

    Type the 0800 number in and it will come up with a landline that will come off your inclusive minutes. Save into mobile under RAC.

    Also I phones on the App Store there’s apps that redial 0800 numbers to landlines.

    Premier Icon somafunk
    Subscriber

    Sounds like it could be a faulty or stuck solenoid on the starter motor, seeing it’s french i’d whack it a few times with a hammer first off, then i’d see about fixing the solenoid with a gentle tap on the starter casing 😀

    stanfree
    Member

    My money is on the ‘Foo foo’ valve or bent Dangle pin.

    john_drummer
    Member

    Why did you drive then if it’s so close? That’ll teach you to walk!

    who said I’s driven from home to pick up mrs_d? I’d just done 25 miles from my place of work.

    anyways, RAC man said “no ignition feed to the starter solenoid”, and he fed the thing direct from his van.
    The correct answer was (g) none of the above. Most likely the ignition switch. Electrical.

    tomorrow Matthew I shall be working from home, until I get it booked into the garage, at which point I’ll roll down the hill until I can get it bump started

    labsey
    Member

    Is there a nail in the tyre?

    I’d say fuses probably.

    john_drummer
    Member

    The Russians managed to halt it eventually.

    I thought it was their weather wot stopped it

    DrRSwank
    Member

    Is it an auto?

    They won’t do anything if left in gear……

    busydog
    Member

    Nothing the others haven’t already suggested
    On the bright side, nobody likely to steal it from the parking lot

    john_drummer
    Member

    anyways, RAC man said “no ignition feed to the starter solenoid”, and he fed the thing direct from his van.
    The correct answer was (g) none of the above. Most likely the ignition switch. Electrical.

    fixed in a “get you home” fashion. Now it needs (most likely) a new ignition switch, which I’m hoping will be cheaper than a new starter motor, battery or alternator, which as has now been proven, are not at fault

    nick1962
    Member

    Surely you were right with

    e) it’s French, so it’ll be an electrical problem. ’56 plate Citroen C4 1.6 petrol.

    john_drummer
    Member

    yeah, I suppose so.

    Premier Icon takisawa2
    Subscriber

    I’m loving that a thread about a broken down car can digress & have the line…

    The Russians managed to halt it eventually

    Superb. 🙂

    djglover
    Member

    Had this on a seat Ibiza recently, it was a carroded electrical connection, diagnosed and fixed in minutes by a local mechanic

    andrewh
    Member

    john_drummer – Member

    The Russians managed to halt it eventually.

    I thought it was their weather wot stopped it

    The weather helped, but so did several hundred thousand troops in and around Stalingrad. I don’t think the French were prepared to sacrifice so many lives to make the stand. Fortunately for us all the Russians were, if Stallingrad had fallen the oil fields in the south were next and the outcome of the war could have been very different if the Germans had taken them, starving the Rusians of oil at the same time as feeding their own armies with it. TBH Hitler should have gone straight for the oil and left Stalingrad for later. Or really he should have finished off the Brits both here and in North Africa and then consolidated his position before attacking Russia in the first place.

    stevemtb
    Member

    As per a few posts above I was wondering if it was an auto too!

    First time it happened to me I turned the ignition off at traffic lights, left it in drive, lights go green, car won’t start much to everyone’s annoyance. Even worse I realised and knocked it into park just seconds before the lights changed, engine fired up, I shot off through the lights as they changed leaving some seriously pissed drivers at the now red light!

    Have also encountered the same problem with it in park and it was immobiliser and cost a fortune, since figured the garage didn’t have a clue though and were almost certainly taking the piss out of me 🙁

    john_drummer
    Member

    manual, 1.6 petrol FWIW

    landcruiser
    Member

    I’m grateful Andrewh wasn’t in charge…… 🙂

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