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GMC Acadia Won’t Start – What Could Be Wrong?

Just like any other car, your GMC Acadia can develop mechanical problems and may not start. What should you do in such a predicament? After consultations with car experts, we got the following answers.

These are the common problems that will cause your GMC Acadia not to start:

  • Weak Battery
  • Battery corrosion
  • Low key fob battery
  • Broken starter motor 
  • Faulty alternator
  • Obstructed fuel filter
  • Faulty fuel pump
  • Blown fuse
  • Failed spark plugs
  • Rodent damage
  • Engine failure

Read further to understand the reasons why your GMC Acadia might not start and the solutions to restart it. In addition, get to know how to maintain your car for it to last longer.

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A GMC emblem in front of a GMC Acadia, GMC Acadia Won't Start - What Could Be Wrong?

Reasons Your GMC Acadia Won’t Start And How To Fix The Problem

Your car not starting is a problem that may happen at any time. But, did you know there are ways of finding out what the problem is and how to fix it? Let’s find out below: 

Weak Battery

The car engine will not start if the battery is dead or weak. Test it using a multimeter to check the battery voltage. 

This Multimeter is on Amazon.

Unlike most cars, a GMC Acadia’s battery is under the floorboard between the front and back passenger seats.  

To access it, turn over the mat, and unscrew counterclockwise the single screw that holds down the battery in place. 

Connect the black end of the multimeter to the negative terminal of the battery. Likewise, connect the red end of the cable to the positive terminal of the battery.

If the reading turns out negative, you’ve connected it the wrong way. Instead, connect it in reverse for the device to capture the correct reading. 

The ideal car battery voltage is 12.6V when the car engine is off. If it reads lower than 11.9V or more than 13V, then a car expert will be required to examine it to find out what the problem is. It could mean it is damaged and may need to be replaced.

Jumpstart Your Vehicle

Before you call a mechanic you can jumpstart your car using jumper cables. You will need a neighbor or friend’s car. For your safety, remove any flammable items nearby and remove the key from the ignition. 

These Energizer jumper cables are on Amazon.

The cars should not be touching each other, as the only electrical current that should connect the two is from the jumper cables.

Attach one side of the red cable to the positive terminal of the dead battery in your car. Also, attach the other end of the red cable to the positive terminal of the battery in the other car. 

The black cables will be attached differently. Attach one side of the cable to the negative battery terminal of the live battery. Attach the other side of the black cable to a piece of metal on the battery in your car. 

The reason for doing this is to decrease the risk of an explosion or fire in case the jumpstart does not happen as planned. 

Next, start the car with the battery that is fine, and let it run for a few minutes to allow the electric current to flow to the dead battery. 

Start your car, and hold it for no more than a few seconds. If it does not start immediately, start your car several times until your battery comes back to life. If the battery does not have a problem per se, then you will only need to drive your car for a while to revive the battery.

Despite a successful jumpstart, you may still need to have your car checked. 

Battery Corrosion

Corrosion on the car battery

Corrosion on your car battery can prevent your car from starting. If this is the case, you will notice a greenish, bluish, or sometimes white substance that has formed on the battery terminals, cables, or posts, blocking the movement of the electrical current. 

However, do not panic as it is easy to clean off the corrosion from the battery. To prevent electric shock, switch off your vehicle, disconnect the negative battery cable, followed by the positive battery cable. Don’t ever forget this order.

Cleaning The Battery

There are several ways of cleaning your battery, but we shall look at the two most common methods.

Using Battery Cleaning Agent

Check out this car battery cleaner on Amazon.

Purchase a commercial-grade battery cleaner and spray it over the corrosion that will clear it and neutralize the acid. 

Cleaning with Baking Soda

Prepare a solution by mixing a glass of water and a teaspoon of baking soda. Pour the solution over the corroded areas. Using an old toothbrush or a bristled brush, scrub the said area. Scrub until the colored substance clears off. 

Afterward, pour some water. You will notice some bubbles, which is an indication the acid is being neutralized.  

Dry the area with a towel and apply some petroleum jelly to prevent further corrosion. 

Low Key Fob Battery

Take a look at this Duracell key fob battery on Amazon.

If your key fob battery is low, it may not start your car. To solve this, place it as close as possible to the start/stop button and start the vehicle. But do remember to replace the battery.

Broken Starter Motor

Check out this GMC Acadia-compatible starter motor on Amazon.

Generally, the life of a starter motor comes to an end when your car runs between 100,000 to 150,000 miles. This is normal and its life is bound to end at some point. If the starter motor is dead, it will not start your engine.

The symptom of this problem is a clicking sound when you try starting your car. It means that your starter is damaged and needs replacement.

For a quick remedy, though, hit the starter motor with something like a stick or a similar tool. However, this is only workable if the parts inside the starter are stuck together or the gears are out of their usual arrangement.

Faulty Alternator

Click here to see this alternator on Amazon.

The alternator works like a generator. It sends out electric power to the spark plugs that ignite the gasoline in the engine. 

A faulty alternator will not send power to the spark plugs; hence, your engine will stop running or will not be able to start. Sometimes, this is confused with a dead battery.

One of the ways of knowing if it is the alternator that is defective and not the battery is if you succeed to jumpstart your car, but it dies shortly afterward. When this happens, replace the alternator.

Obstructed Fuel Filter

A dirty fuel filter

The supply of oil that goes to the engine reduces when the fuel filter is clogged. When it is clogged or obstructed, your engine will not start. Fuse replacement is necessary. 

Faulty Fuel Pump

The fuel pump is responsible for pumping fuel from the tank to the engine under adequate pressure.

But if the pump stops working, you will notice your car jerking several times. So, when your car does not start, it is a sign the fuel pump is damaged. 

Blown Fuse

fuse gets blown when it heats up and melts, consequently interrupting the flow of electricity. 

If the interior lights, a turning signal, or the radio is experiencing problems, the fuse may have blown up. 

However, in rare cases, your car will not start because a fuse in your engine has blown up and will need replacement. 

Failed Spark Plugs

Have a look at these GMC Acadia-compatible spark plugs on Amazon.

Your car engine will not start if the spark plugs are loose or faulty. They could be loose which you could easily fix by tightening them with your hand. But, if one or more has failed, they have to be replaced.

Car mechanic replacing the old spark plug with a new one

Rodent Damage

When rodents find their way into your car and bite the wiring, a lot can get damaged affecting many vehicle systems, including that responsible for starting your car.

Engine Failure

Your engine failing means nothing will work anymore. There are several reasons for this, including overheating, oil leaks, and using the wrong fuel. 

How To Maintain Your GMC Acadia To Last Longer

Aside from solving the problems that cause your car not to start, you would want it to last long. Below are tips on how to maintain your GMC Acadia to last longer:

Change Oil Regularly

Replacing old oil with new synthetic oil

Change the oil in your car often to keep the moving parts well lubricated. Also, ensure the oil filter is in good working condition. 

Check For Oil Leaks

As seen above, one of the causes of engine failure is an oil leak that can prevent your car from starting. Always look out for oil leaks, and have the vehicle checked immediately once you notice this problem. 

Avoid Driving On Reserve Fuel

For the fuel pump to last long, avoid driving on reserve fuel. Since sediments from petrol settle at the bottom of the tank, driving your car almost empty will cause the fuel pump to wear out. 

Clean The Spark Plugs

Sometimes, all that is required is to clean the spark plugs so you can continue using your car with its proper functioning.

In Closing

A GMC emblem in front of a GMC Acadia, GMC Acadia Won't Start - What Could Be Wrong?

It can be worrisome when your GMC Acadia won't start. Various reasons bring about this problem. Some you can solve immediately, but others require you to take your car for service.

Find out more about how long a GMC Acadia lasts, and the best oil to use from these posts:

How Long Does GMC Acadia Last?

Best Oil Filter And Oil For GMC Acadia