My Mazda Won't Start

Judging by the numbers of Mazdas you see on the road alone, it's safe to assume that they are generally reliable, good cars. Unfortunately, just as with any other machine, they can fall victim to fundamental problems that impair them from functioning properly. If you're having trouble starting your Mazda, don't panic. By testing out simple troubleshooting methods, you can save yourself a trip to the mechanic unless it is absolutely necessary.

Push your key into the ignition all the way before you attempt to turn it. This might sound like common sense, but when you're in a rush to get somewhere, you may subconsciously insert the key only part of the way and if you do this, it will not be able to turn. Also ensure you're turning the key away from you rather than toward you, which will only start the sound system and not the engine.

Put your ear close to the ignition when you attempt to start you car. A faint "clicking" sound (as oppose to the engine starting up) can mean a battery or alternator problem. Confirm this suspicion by looking at your dashboard when you start up. If your "Battery" light -- denoted by a square shape with a lightning bolt in the middle on most models -- lights up when you attempt to start the car, a faulty battery is to blame.

Fill your Mazda's tank with gas. Have a friend or neighbour take you to a petrol station with a portable gas tank, then return to your Mazda and put the gas in its tank. Having little or no gas can prevent your Mazda from starting.

Call your local Mazda dealership (if your car is still new or under warranty) or a Mazda specialist in your area if your Mazda is older. If neither your technique, your gas level, nor your battery are to blame, it may be something more serious. A faulty starter or, worse, a severe engine problem may be the culprit.

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About the Author

Robert Schrader is a writer, photographer, world traveler and creator of the award-winning blog Leave Your Daily Hell. When he's not out globetrotting, you can find him in beautiful Austin, TX, where he lives with his partner.