Chevy Equinox Won’t Start: A Comprehensive Guide

It’s frustrating to drive a car that frequently fails to start. You cannot rely on it to solve emergencies or drive to an early meet-up with a client. Although the Chevy Equinox is a decent and reliable SUV, there has been an upsurge of “won’t start” cases.

Unfortunately, a won’t start problem can find you unaware at any location. Remember, most drivers rely on mechanics to fix technical issues. So, if help doesn’t arrive on time, it can disrupt your day or travel plans.

That said, it’s crucial to have a basic understanding of possible causes and solutions. If the problem persists, a California lemon law attorney can help pursue a buyback, refund, or replacement.

An ignition problem can occur in two ways; the engine won’t crank or the engine cranks but won’t start. In the first instance, the car doesn’t display lights or sound. In the second option, the engine turns but doesn’t fire or run on its own.

Diagnosis of Why a Chevy Equinox Won’t Start 

Check the Warning Lights In the Dashboard

Use the car dashboard as the starting point before you make any decisions. Look out for signs of engine trouble from the dashboard indicators. Typically, if the engine sign turns red light, your SUV requires immediate action. Yellow and orange are additional signs indicating the need to check the engine.

Note that your chevy equinox dashboard will look slightly different. This image serves for illustrating purposes.

Check if the Keyless Remote Battery Is Low

If the keyless remote battery is low, it cannot electronically immobilize the SUV. With that in mind, confirm the status of the battery. Alternatively, try igniting the car using the spare key to confirm or rule out battery defects.

chevrolet keyless remote

Common Causes of Ignition Problems

A Defective Engine

Your Chevy Equinox may also fail to start due to a defective engine. Two reasons can be at fault: either a broken tooth belt or a defective timing chain. A defective timing chain affects the engine’s ability to fire at the right time. 

Below are the possible causes of the above engine defects:

  • Using adulterated fuel
  • Overturning the engine too often
  • If the engine absorbed water after driving through a flooded section
  • An overheated cooler, especially in summer
  • Using old oil or insufficient oil which impedes engine lubrication

Most engine defects can be solved through a repair or replacement. However, the value of some engine repairs is almost equivalent to the car’s value. It’s, therefore, important to liaise with your dealer to monitor if the defect warrants a buyback or replacement. 

Common issues that are quick to fix include engine oil, overheating, valve control, and engine compression.

A Defective Coolant or Oil Supply

Driving a Chevy Equinox for a long duration with insufficient coolant can effectively kill it. Some models have smart controls that lock the car ignition if it lacks enough coolant. As such, you need to regularly check and refill the coolant level to keep performance at optimal levels.

On the other hand, proper oil levels play a vital role in a car’s functionality. Engines’ internal systems may lock the ignition system to prevent further complications associated with low oil.

What’s more, an engine can stall if it runs for a long period with low oil.

Here are the common signs of a car with low oil:

  • Smoke comes from the exhaust
  • Trouble starting the engine
  • Loud thumping, grinding, or knocking sound from the engine

Besides ignition, low oil or coolant has other effects. For instance, the engine rods can break due to low lubrication. Subsequently, the piston can fail, resulting in engine breakdown.

A Defective Car Battery

If your battery is empty or dead, your Chevy Equinox may not start. As the battery approaches the end of its useful life, its ‘cranking amps’ decrease impeding its ability to ignite. 

Here are additional reasons why batteries become defective:

  • Scorching summer temperatures can weaken the battery
  • A defective vehicle alternator that doesn’t charge the battery
  • Corroded terminals that reduce the battery’s ability to charge
  • A car that hasn’t run for a long time
  • Low temperatures that freeze the battery

You can fix a low charge issue by jump-starting, however, it’s a different case with a defective battery. Look out for signs like dim headlights, check engine light, trouble with ignition, odd smell, or sluggish cranking time.

A point to note: A battery is considered empty at 11.9V. A battery becomes permanently dead If it discharges below 10.5V. In normal charge, the lead plates are mostly covered with lead sulfate. However, at 10.5V the lead sulfate becomes hardened crystals making it impossible to charge from an alternator or other sources.

A Defective Starter

You just need a little push to ignite a functional starter. Therefore, if you push the starter and nothing happens, that’s a worrying sign. Alternatively, check whether the starter engages and the car doesn’t start.

There are several reasons behind a defective Chevy Equinox starter:

  • Contamination from resin or defective freewheel
  • A worn sprocket
  • If the motor of the starter is broken

It’s important to note that car starters rarely break as they’re designed to last their useful life.

Defective Fuse

The latest Chevy Equinox model can be started automatically. It, therefore, relies on electric connections to run key features like ignition, windscreen wipers, or automatic climate control. Remember, all-electric connections require a fuse to prevent excess power from damaging internal components.

Normally, a defective fuse affects minor systems like backup lights, internal lighting, radio, signal system, or control. Even so, in a serious case of overloading, a blown fuse can damage the car starter.

A fuse can blow if a technician replaces a fuse with higher amperage. For instance, installing a 30 amp fuse to an electric connection that uses a 15 amp fuse. Conversely, replacing a low-capacity fuse may not adequately power a Chevy Equinox starter.

Speak to an Experienced Lemon Law Attorney

If your Chevy Equinox ignition problem persists, it could fall into the lemon car category. Luckily, California lemon laws were designed to offer reprieve to car owners like you. At Lemon Law 123, we strive to offer the best representation to lemon car owners. Contact us online or call us at 657.529.5239 for a free case review.

Valerie G. Fernandez Campbell

Valerie G. Fernandez Campbell, known as The Lemon Law Lady, has dedicated her entire legal career to the specialized field of Lemon Law, a journey that began immediately after her
graduation from UCLA School of Law.

With a 99% success rate and a policy of no fees unless you win, her practice stands as a testament to her expertise in California’s Lemon Law, her commitment to her clients, and her unwavering dedication to justice and consumer rights.

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