When you come out and attempt to start your car and the engine doesn't fire up, it can cause a major headache. Here are a number of things that you can check yourself on the car, even if you don't have a mechanical background, to try and fix the problem.
Make Sure The Battery Is Connected
Battery cables can come loose and get disconnected from the battery. Check to make sure that each cable is properly connected the terminal and is not loose. Also check the connection for signs of rust or corrosion, which can prevent the battery from sending a proper signal to turn over the engine. Clean out the connectors and make sure that they are securely fastened to the battery so that there is enough power for the engine to turn over. Also take note when you turn the key in the engine to see if you have power on the dashboard, interior lights and radio to check if the battery is completely dead or has power.
Check To Make Sure That You Have Enough Fuel
Make sure that the vehicle has the proper amount of fuel and that you haven't run out of gas. Be aware that your fuel gauge may have stopped working, sending an incorrect indication of how much fuel is actually in the tank. If you have some fuel to spare, fill the tank with a couple dollars' worth of gas to ensure that the car has enough fuel to start. If the car has gas, you can put your ear up to the fuel cap and listen to hear if the fuel pump is pumping or clicking off. If you hear it click off it could be a sign that you need to replace the fuel pump.
Check The Starter
Put the key inside the ignition and listen for a clicking noise when you turn the key. The clicking noise, or no noise at all, could be a sign that the starter on the car needs to be replaced. If you hear a grinding noise when you attempt to start the car, that could be a sign that your gears are being ground down and you should immediately stop trying to start the car. Take it into a mechanic's garage and have it inspected by a professional auto repair technician to ensure that you don't do any further damage to the engine.
If you follow the steps outlined above and cannot diagnose the problem, then it could be an indication that there is much larger mechanical issue at play. Take your car into a professional mechanic and have them inspect the car to figure out exactly what the problem is using their diagnostic tools. Talk to experts like Autowerkes for more information.