What should you do if your car, van, minivan, truck, SUV, or RV starts then dies randomly after starting? It depends on the situation, of course.
You might even become paranoid altogether because this issue only occurs when starting up the vehicle and at random startups at that. It might also do these premature or incomplete startups of sorts when it sits in your garage overnight.
For some models of vehicles this dying startup problem usually occurs within the average mileage of 25,000 miles or if you've driven your car for that amount of miles since you've bought it.
Possible Causes and Origins for the False Start
- Fuel Pump or Battery Post Issues: You might have fuel pump issues, which keep your car from starting all the way. In fact, if you get your car back to its dealership, that's probably the diagnosis of the in-house mechanic there. However, to err on the side of caution and your budget, try getting the battery post fixed by a separate mechanic. More often than not, this is the likeliest scenario while fuel pump repair and replacement is the worst-case scenario that will cost you the most. Check the post first then have the fuel pump inspected.
- Faulty Security System: The modernization of cars to include car computers is both a blessing and a curse. More to the point, the reason why your vehicle is failing to startup all the way through is because its computer might be overreacting to something, thus causing the failsafe to kick in. You'll know this because its security light is activated. To be more specific, your engine keeps dying randomly after startup because the security system falsely thinks your vehicle is being stolen or hotwired. It then disables the fuel injectors.
- Worn Key or Key Ignition: Your key ignition or the car keys themselves might be worn out. That means when you attempt to start your car, from time to time the turning of the ignition to rev up the engine won't properly register with the engine itself because the key or the key ignition aren't working properly. You need to have one or the other or both replaced in order to properly start your car from thereon end. Or perhaps your security system might think you're attempting to steal your own car.
- Typical Repair Cost Depends on The Problem: The cost of repair for faulty or failed startups might go all the way up to $3,000 if it's not merely a battery or ignition problem. This $3,000 might go to fixing your car's computer security system, your fuel pump, or the like. What should be recalibrated, reset, replaced, or fixed depends on what the error code says or what your mechanic has concluded as the issue.