My Car Won’t Start But The Radio And Lights Work

My Car Won’t Start But The Radio And Lights Work – Some Of The Possible Causes And Relevant Fix

It is common for some car owners to experience the issue of their car engine not starting, and at the same time, it also happens that the radio and lights are working properly.

The situation can create confusion especially among car owners who are not well informed on some of the faults that may lead to the problem. The suspects usually revolve around the car’s fuel system (fuel, pumps), ignition (spark plugs), and the battery.

A better understanding of what might go wrong in the mentioned systems means that a car owner may have an easier time if the problem arises, and apply an appropriate solution that can enable a car engine to start as required.

The article explores the problems that may be encountered, and reliable solutions are also discussed. In the event you find some repairs may be of help, you must ensure that you can do them on your own without creating further damages.

Meanwhile, in situations the damages are complicated for your basic auto repair skills; then it will be of immense help if you consult professional auto repair experts.


My Car Won’t Start But The Radio And Lights Work – Some Of The Possible Causes And Relevant Fix


Low fuel level may cause a car not to move even if the battery is at its right recharge level.

The problem is easy to diagnose as the only requirement is that you should check the fuel level, and apply the necessary refill.

Low fuel level means that the required amount of power may fail to reach a car’s transmission components such as gears, and this may make the car starting to have some difficulty.

Meanwhile, the lights and radio may still work since their operating power is derived from the battery, and are not mostly dependent on the fuel level.

Spark Plugs

Before a car starts moving, the sparks generated from the battery must be strong enough as long as the fuel level is recommendable.

For a car to get started, the compressed fuel vapor mixture must be ignited by the spark plug, and this what causes the engine to roar.

Meanwhile, the spark plug may get overheated, choked with dirt, or suffer severe mechanical damage, and these issues will lead to failure in starting the car engine.

If bad spark plugs are the underlying problem, thankfully, brand new plugs are inexpensive to purchase and also install.


The battery does supply power to all the electrical components in the car; that is the radio, lights, ignition and door locks. Besides, batteries create a spark which is then used to ignite the fuel which then drives the engine.

Diagnosis of problems that have anything to do with a dead battery is simple since all other car’s electrical components functionality gets to be either dimmed or dead.

Batteries can fail due to wear and tear, and also partially due to aging. Regularly recharge of batteries is necessary to ensure that they don’t get completely drained.

Again, replacements are ideal in a situation when the battery may be underperforming due to aging-related issues. Jump-starting the cables sometimes work and can make your car move temporarily.

Faulty Starter

If the vehicle battery seems to be in good condition, then the problem may have to be linked to the starter.

A starter is a motor that draws electric current from the battery to start the engine. In the event a starter malfunctions, you may notice this if you hear a clicking sound anytime you key in the ignition.

Loose connections may cause the problem, and the solution just requires joining any loose joints. Sometimes, replacements may be the best recommendation if the starter’ components are extremely worn out.

Jump-starting the car may sometimes help fix the starter issue, but this doesn’t guarantee a fix in many instances.

Fuel Pump Issues

If the car can’t pump gas to drive the engine, then it won’t start. The problem occurs when the pressure in the fuel transmission system is very low, and this is mostly linked to wear and tear, blockages, and leakages along the fuel transmission lines.

Again, if the fuel tank is left dry for too long, this may cause the fuel pump to age faster, and develop mechanical failures. Car owners are advised to consider regular preventive maintenance if the mechanical issues with the fuel pump are to be done away with.

Maintenance often advocates for change of faulty fuel filters and also helps in the early identification of faults that may have been slowly building up in a car’s fuel transmission system.

Before the fuel pump is brought into noticeable failure; engine jerks at high speeds, sudden power loss, and dwindling fuel economy may be used as reliable indicators.

Human Error Factor That Does Apply To Certain Auto Models

Though the topic of discussion is mostly linked to engine factors, sometimes our minds go berserk and engage in mistakes that we come to realize later after coming to the right senses.

  • For instance, there are new car models that won’t allow the engine to start if the driver doesn’t have seat belts worn appropriately.
  • For automatic car models, the car must be in the park – most autos won’t start if the transmission is placed on the drive, and the driver’s foot is not on the brake.
  • For some manual cars, the engine won’t start if the clutch isn’t pressed enough.


The issue of the car engine not starting even when the radio and the lights are fully functioning mostly has to do with a car’s level of maintenance.

Some faults do develop slowly, but at a consistent rate, and with time, the faults do get to undermine a car’s operational efficiency substantially.

The engine must, therefore, be regularly serviced, and through the approach, any arising defects get to be identified soon enough, and a necessary fix is taken.

Maintenance may take the approach of doing a complete overhaul of the affected car components or just doing minor repairs that will ensure that the affected components get to function again properly.

It is not preferable to wait until a given mechanical problem surfaces, and take your auto for repair at this time – the damage may be huge and adversely impact your car repair finances.

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