Starting Your Car in the Cold

2021 Honda Passport Sport on Snowy Road

When the temperatures start dropping in Louisville and Broomfield, stress levels can rise! Many drivers find themselves wondering, “Why won’t my car start when it’s cold outside?” There are several reasons that your car can be more sluggish in the colder months, and Fisher Honda is here to help you troubleshoot. Find out how to perform a cold start for your car, and get your car diagnosed at our service center today.

Why Won’t My Car Start When It’s Cold?

What if your car won’t start when cold, but starts when warm? Cold temperatures can be tough on a vehicle. Here are some of the reasons that the frigid cold can stress out your car:

  • Battery Output: When the temperatures drop, batteries produce less electrical current. This means they simply aren’t as efficient as they are in warmer weather.
  • Engine Oil: The cold air can also thicken your engine oil, which means the engine needs to work slightly harder to get going. This can also tax the battery.
  • Fuel Line: If you have moisture trapped in the fuel lines, this can freeze and block your fuel line. And if you drive a diesel truck, the diesel can actually turn into a gel in the cold.
  • Carburetor: The small nozzles of carburetors may become clogged in the cold, which can prevent any moisture from evaporating. This is particularly important if you have an older model in Longmont.

How to Start Your Car in the Cold

If you’re sick of dealing with sluggish starts, here are a few service tips and tricks to help get your engine back in gear:

  • Turn off all electrical systems to free up extra battery power.
  • Dip the clutch when starting your ignition to reduce the strain on your battery even further.
  • Double check your battery cables to make sure there is no visible corrosion present. If so, pick up cleaning supplies at the parts department to remove the corrosion safely.
  • Also double check your engine oil. If it’s low, top it off with a funnel to the proper levels – but do not overfill!

Performing a Cold Start Car Jump

What is a cold start car jump? A cold start car jump is the same as a regular jump start, but it’s much more common in cold weather. Here’s how to perform a cold-start car jump:

  1. Find jumper cables and flag down a good samaritan with a working car.
  2. Turn off both cars, and make sure that they’re parked.
  3. Attach one of the red jumper cables to the positive terminal of the good battery.
  4. Attach the other red jumper cable to the battery of the car that won’t start.
  5. Attach the black jumper cable to the negative terminal on the good battery.
  6. Attach the remaining black cable to an unpainted metal surface on your vehicle.

The car with the good battery will start the car for several minutes. Try turning on your car and if it works, remove the cables in the opposite order that you put them on. Allow your engine to run for 10 to 15 minutes to ensure that the charge holds.

Schedule Your Service with Fisher Honda

Whether you want a new set of jumper cables or you’re ready for that winter maintenance appointment, you can trust Fisher Honda for all of your automotive needs. Contact us at Boulder to learn more about our service offerings or schedule your appointment online today!


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