Honda Civic Won’t Start: Reasons And How To Fix Them

by Conner Mckay

Honda Civics is unarguably one of the most dependable cars on the market even today. This car which has been around since the early ‘70s is one of the best-selling cars from the brand. Similar to any other car, however, the Honda Civic suffers from some mechanical shortcomings. A big problem with these cars is that the engine of your Honda Civic won’t start.

If your Honda Civic won’t start, what should you do? Most of the time the culprit is a bad alternator, starter, or battery. If the engine won’t turn over even though you cranked the engine, know that there might be something wrong with the battery. Try to get a fellow driver to jump-start your car if you own jumper cables (once you’ve learned how to put on jumper cables).

A car that doesn’t work has to be taken to a certified mechanic as soon as possible. Your local dealer or mechanic can run troubleshooting tests on your car and confirm or deny your doubts. There are many possible issues for a Honda Civic to not start. In this guide, we’ll look at all of these causes, as well as diagnosis and troubleshooting steps, as well as any repairs.

Honda Civic Won’t Start: Key Ignition-Related Components

While it might seem redundant, having some basic knowledge about your car is essential. After all, your car is an important part of your daily life. Sure, a car comes with various alert lights for your convenience so you can know your car’s computer has sensed an issue. However, we recommend having basic information about the parts of a car.

Car vehicle problems reliability diagnose troubleshooting engine electrical

When a Honda Civic won’t start, these are the factors to consider:

The Battery

Your car should respond when you crank it. If it doesn’t, you are dealing with a dead battery. To check it, attach jumper cables to it and try to jump-start it. Let your Civic charger for a few minutes if it starts up and head to the mechanic.

The problem is probably a dying battery. Roadside assistance can help with the jump-start or even attach a new battery (or, you can learn how to charge a completely dead car battery).

The Alternator

If you hear a growl or click when you turn the key in the ignition but it is not followed up by a response from the engine, it means the issue is a bad alternator. Attempt to jump-start the battery and check if your Civic starts.

If it does, perhaps the battery wasn’t being properly charged by the alternator. If your car can hold a charge, get a mechanic or dealership to conduct further evaluation.

The Starter

The starter may be faulty if a clicking noise comes when you fail to crank the engine. Chances are when there is no response after you try to jump the battery, the problem is with the starter. Then, you have to get your Civic towed to a local mechanic or dealership.

Why Won’t My Car Start

Not specific to the Honda Civic alone, and before we discuss more specific no-start scenarios in the next section, here are some of the most common reasons why a car won’t start…

1. Dead Car Battery

Perhaps the most typical reason your vehicle won’t start is a dead battery. This vital component provides the electrical energy needed to kickstart the engine and other electric parts. Signs of a dead battery can include the engine not turning over or the interior lights not illuminating when you attempt to start your car.

2. Alternator Issues

The alternator is tasked with transforming mechanical energy into electrical energy, thereby recharging your car battery. If your alternator is faulty, it may not supply sufficient power to your battery, affecting the car’s ability to start.

Signs of a failing alternator can be when the interior lights flicker or dim quickly, or the check engine light illuminates on your dashboard.

3. Battery Connection Problems

Even with a charged battery and a functional alternator, loose or corroded battery connections can prevent your car from starting. Corrosion can occur when battery acid reacts with the metal terminals, leading to a bad connection.

4. Blown Fuses

A car’s electrical system is safeguarded by fuses that prevent damage to major components. When a critical fuse, such as the one for the starter relay, is blown, it can hinder the car’s ability to start. Replacing the blown fuse with a compatible one typically resolves the issue.

5. Incorrect Gear

Automatically, a car needs to be in park or neutral to start. If your car refuses to start, check the gear position and adjust as needed.

6. Key Fob Battery Issues

In modern cars with push-start systems, a dead battery in your key fob could prevent your vehicle from starting. The fob sends a signal to the car to initiate the starting process; without power, this signal is not sent.

7. Ignition Switch Complications

Your car’s ignition switch helps transfer power from the battery to the rest of the vehicle. A faulty ignition switch means no power reaches the car’s starter motor, leaving it unable to start.

8. Worn-Out Spark Plugs

Cars require a spark from the spark plug and a fuel-air mixture to start. A worn-out spark plug can disrupt this combustion process, leaving your engine unable to start. Replacing the old spark plug should resolve the issue.

9. Starter Motor Failures

A car’s starter motor rotates the internal combustion engine to begin the process of starting the car. When this starter motor or the attached starter solenoid is faulty, your car may not start upon turning the ignition key.

10. Fuel Shortage

Running low on gas can indeed prevent your car from starting. A regular check on your fuel gauge can help avoid this common issue. If you’re losing gas too quickly, it might indicate a leak in your fuel system that needs immediate attention.

11. Damaged Timing Belt

The timing belt plays a crucial role in synchronizing the crankshaft and cam in your engine. A worn-out timing belt will hinder your engine from turning on. Unfortunately, damaged timing belts cannot be repaired and must be replaced.

12. Ground Cable Issues

The ground cable, also known as the negative battery cable, connects your car’s battery to its body. If it’s damaged, it can disrupt the power supply, and your vehicle won’t start.

13. Clogged Fuel Filter

The fuel filter’s job is to screen out any impurities in the fuel before it reaches the tank. If this filter becomes blocked, fuel flow will be interrupted, and the vehicle won’t start. Regular replacement of the fuel filter can prevent this issue.

While these are common issues, always consult a professional mechanic to accurately diagnose and fix the problem. By doing so, you’ll ensure your vehicle remains reliable and safe to drive.

Honda Civic Won’t Start

Here are some of the more common scenarios that might be relevant to you if your Honda Civic won’t start. Below, you’ll also find detailed diagnoses and troubleshooting steps for each of these scenarios. In addition, the symptoms and causes of each circumstance. And, more importantly, what’s required to fix them for good…

Honda Civic Won’t Start But Battery Is Fine

What to do if the battery is good but your Honda Civic won’t start? Of course, that means that there is nothing wrong with the battery and you have to look for a problem elsewhere. The most common reasons could be a faulty starter, alternator, or corroded wires somewhere in the system.

In case the culprit is a bad alternator that has failed to properly recharge the battery, getting a jump from a different car’s battery should do the trick. For this, connect the positive-negative ends of the jumper cables to the end of the two batteries. Turn on the engine of the host car and turn the ignition switch over.

There are many detailed guides on the Internet on how to jump a car and we will provide one later on for your convenience. If a starter fails, try tapping it with a screwdriver or hammer. Sometimes, that helps make enough contact for a connection to form and the engine starts.

On the other hand, if you suspect loose, corroded, or loose wires, move the terminals around. If needed, detach the terminals and dust off the corrosion or rust off them before reattaching. Change them if there is excessive wear.


If your Honda Civic won’t start but the battery is fine, it means that power is reaching your vehicle, but some other issue is preventing the engine from turning over. You might notice the dash lights come on when you turn the key, but nothing happens under the hood. Alternatively, you might hear a clicking or grinding sound but still no engine start.


The most common causes for this issue are a faulty starter, a problematic alternator, or corroded wires in the electrical system. The starter motor might be failing to engage, the alternator might be unable to recharge the battery effectively, or corrosion on the wires might be inhibiting the flow of electricity.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

To diagnose the problem, start by inspecting the starter motor and the alternator for any signs of wear or damage. If you notice any irregularities, these parts may need to be replaced.

Next, inspect the wires and terminals for corrosion. If the terminals are corroded, this can interfere with the battery’s ability to send power to the starter. Also, make sure the connections are not loose; a loose connection can cause a similar problem.

DIY Repair

If the alternator is the issue, try jump-starting the car with cables from another vehicle. Should your car start, it likely means the alternator needs to be replaced.

If you suspect a faulty starter, give it a gentle tap with a screwdriver or hammer. Sometimes, this can help establish enough contact for the engine to start.

For corroded or loose wires, clean the terminals and tighten the connections. If the wires are excessively worn, you might need to replace them.

Repair/Replacement Cost

The cost to replace a starter can range from $300 to $600, including parts and labor. If you need a new alternator, the cost is likely to be between $400 and $600. Finally, replacing corroded wires can cost from $100 to $200, depending on the extent of the damage.

Always bear in mind that costs can vary depending on your specific vehicle model and the rates of the mechanic or repair shop.

Remember, regularly maintaining your vehicle and addressing minor issues as they arise can save you a lot of trouble and potential repair costs in the future. Be attentive to your Honda Civic’s performance and symptoms of potential issues to avoid major breakdowns.

Honda Civic Won’t Start But There Is Power

You can strike off a dead battery from the list of possible reasons if there is power in your Honda Civic but it won’t start. How to know there is power? The lights, radio, and heater/AC will run. Again, the problem may come down to a poor alternator, starter, spark plug, or a block or clog in the fuel line.

Even if the ignition electronics and ignition lock are defective, the radio and interior lighting work as usual. There is no response from the engine bay when the key is twisted, the start button is hit, or the chip card is damaged.

Get the help of a locksmith specializing (make sure you check out our guide on how much does a auto locksmith cost) in your Honda model if you have lost Honda key replacement Locksmith no spare. Know that the fuel pump or spark plugs are the problems if you can hear the general noises made by a starter during an ignition process.


When these pieces are broken, the engine cannot start as there is no combustion. The fuel pump is unable to pump fuel (as you understand how to pump gas) into the combustion chamber so there is no scope for the explosion. You must bring your vehicle to a mechanic immediately. You can fix the damages yourself but will need specialist knowledge along with the right tools.

As mentioned earlier, if the problem is an alternator failure, it can be solved by a battery jump from another vehicle’s battery. In some instances, however, you may be able to get away by simply cleaning or replacing the fuel filter. When a fuel filter isn’t serviced for a long time, it tends to clog, preventing adequate amounts of fuel to move through the car’s system and allow engine ignition.

In this situation, your Honda Civic doesn’t start even though there is power to the accessories. The lights, radio, heater, and AC all function, but the engine remains silent. You might not hear any noises from the engine bay when attempting to start the vehicle, indicating the absence of the usual ignition process.


Faulty spark plugs, a bad alternator or starter, or a blockage in the fuel line could all be the culprits here. Additionally, issues with the ignition electronics, ignition lock, or a damaged chip card could be causing the problem. If your engine isn’t receiving fuel or the spark needed for combustion, it won’t start.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

Firstly, check the fuel pump and spark plugs. If the fuel pump is failing, it won’t send fuel to the engine, and faulty spark plugs can’t ignite the fuel-air mixture. Also, inspect the alternator and starter for signs of wear or damage.

If you suspect an issue with the ignition system, consult a locksmith who specializes in car keys. They can determine if the ignition lock or chip card is causing the problem.

DIY Repair

If your vehicle has a clogged fuel line or filter, you can attempt to clean it yourself. Regular maintenance of the fuel filter can prevent this problem.

For alternator failure, a jump-start may help get you on the road again, but it’s a temporary solution. You’ll need to replace the alternator.

However, keep in mind that repairing or replacing components like spark plugs, the fuel pump, or parts of the ignition system requires specialist knowledge and tools. It might be more efficient and safer to have these tasks performed by a professional mechanic.

Repair/Replacement Cost

The costs for these repairs vary. Replacing a fuel pump can cost between $400 to $600, while spark plugs can be replaced for $80 to $150, depending on your model. Alternator replacement, as mentioned earlier, can run between $400 to $600.

Finally, if the ignition lock or chip card is the problem, a locksmith service might cost anywhere from $50 to $250. As always, these costs can vary based on the specifics of your vehicle and your location. Regular preventative maintenance can help you avoid these costly repairs and ensure your vehicle remains reliable.

Honda Civic Won’t Start Yet Lights Are On

Let’s assume that your Honda Civic won’t start but you can still toggle the lights. Once again, the battery isn’t dead and the potential perpetrators are a bad starter (you can troubleshoot it further by learning how to tell if your starter is bad), fuel injection system, alternator, ignition switch, or terminal connection.

Tap the starter using a hammer and it may solve the problem. Also, examine the wires connecting to the battery to ensure they are all secured in place.


In this scenario, your Honda Civic won’t start despite the lights being functional. This indicates that the battery is supplying power to your vehicle, but the engine isn’t turning over. No sounds may be heard from the engine compartment when attempting to start the vehicle.


Potential causes include a bad starter, a malfunctioning fuel injection system, a failed alternator, a faulty ignition switch, or an issue with the terminal connections. All these components play crucial roles in starting your car. A malfunction in any of them can lead to the car not starting despite having power.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

Begin your diagnosis by inspecting the starter motor. Check for signs of wear or damage. If it looks fine externally, it might still be internally faulty.

Examine the wires and connections to the battery. Loose or corroded terminals can cause starting problems. Also, look at the alternator and fuel injection system for any signs of trouble. These systems play a vital role in starting the car.

DIY Repair

If you suspect the starter is the problem, a gentle tap with a hammer can sometimes re-establish enough contact to get it working temporarily. But remember, this is only a temporary fix and the starter should be replaced.

Ensure that all the wires connected to the battery are secured and clean. Loose or corroded connections can be cleaned and tightened to restore proper function.

Again, for issues related to fuel injection systems, alternators, or ignition switches, professional help is usually the best course of action, as these components require specialized knowledge and tools to diagnose and repair correctly.

Repair/Replacement Cost

The cost of replacing a starter motor can range from $300 to $600. An alternator replacement can cost between $400 and $600. Fixing a faulty ignition switch might set you back anywhere from $150 to $250. Lastly, if the fuel injection system is the problem, you’re looking at costs of anywhere between $500 to $1000.

However, these are just averages and the actual cost can vary significantly depending on the specifics of your vehicle and your location. Regular maintenance and prompt attention to any starting issues can help keep these costs down.

Symptoms Of A Faulty Starter

A battery powers a car’s starter and is responsible for getting the vehicle up and running. Your car simply won’t start if the starter isn’t good. A list of bad starter symptoms includes:

  • Clicking noise: By this point, you should know what sounds your car makes when it starts. There are normal sounds and then there are the abnormal ones. If you can hear a whirring, grinding, or clicking sounds when you push the start button or turn the key, and the engine doesn’t turn over, a failed starter can be the reason. No lights but the engine should technically start and the dashboard lights should illuminate when you crank the car. If the lights are on but the engine doesn’t start, the starter can be dead.
  • Jumpstart doesn’t help: Jumping an engine should be enough to start an engine. If you have tried jumping the engine but it doesn’t help, your starter may need a replacement.
  • Smoke coming from engine: Vehicles are powered by complex electrical systems that could overheat from time to time. Numerous failed attempts at starting your car may make the starter get excessively hot. If you see any sort of smoke, it’s time to call for help.
  • Oil leak: If oil manages a way to get into the starter, the component can fail. You should get a mechanic to check out the situation.

Honda Civic Won’t Start But Can Turn Over

Car vehicle problems reliability diagnose troubleshooting engine electrical

Your Civic can turn over but still refuse to start. This can be owed to either an issue with the vehicle’s ignition system or the fuel system. Inspect for blockage in the fuel filter and clean it if necessary.


In this scenario, your Honda Civic is able to crank or turn over, but it refuses to fully start. This typically sounds like the engine trying to start, represented by a series of “rur-rur-rur” noises, but not catching and running on its own.


The main culprits, in this case, are often problems with the vehicle’s ignition system or the fuel system. If the ignition system can’t generate the necessary spark, or if the fuel system can’t deliver fuel to the engine, your car will turn over but won’t start.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

Firstly, check for blockage in the fuel filter. A blocked fuel filter can prevent the necessary fuel flow to the engine. Secondly, inspect the spark plugs and ignition wires. These components are responsible for providing the spark necessary to ignite the fuel-air mixture in the engine.

DIY Repair

If the fuel filter is clogged, you can try cleaning or replacing it yourself. This task requires minimal tools and can be performed by most DIYers.

However, troubleshooting the ignition system requires a bit more expertise. If you’re not comfortable doing this yourself, it might be best to take your vehicle to a professional.

Repair/Replacement Cost

Replacing a clogged fuel filter can cost anywhere from $50 to $150, depending on the make and model of your vehicle. If the ignition system is the issue, the cost can vary greatly. Spark plugs and ignition wires are relatively inexpensive, with total costs usually falling between $100 and $200.

But if the problem is the ignition coil or ignition control module, you could be looking at anywhere from $200 to $400 for parts and labor. Again, these costs are estimates and can vary based on a variety of factors. As always, regular maintenance can help prevent these problems from arising and save you money in the long run.

Honda Civic Won’t Start: Check ABS System

Your car is filled with alerts and lights everywhere to warn when your vehicle isn’t operating in perfect condition. The ABS (anti-locking brake) system is a crucial part of any vehicle.

If there is a light illuminating the dashboard asking you to examine the ABS while your Honda Civic refuses to start, this may indicate a problem with a partially dead battery. The battery might not be dead entirely but it does not have enough charge stored in it to turn the engine over.

The solution is pretty simple: All you have to do is give a jump to the battery using a booster or host vehicle while engaging the ignition switch.


When the “Check ABS System” warning light illuminates on your dashboard and your Honda Civic refuses to start, it could indicate an issue with the vehicle’s electrical system. The ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) light is a part of the car’s self-diagnostic system and typically shouldn’t affect the vehicle’s ability to start.


If the ABS light is on and your car isn’t starting, it may be due to a partially dead battery. The battery might not be completely discharged, but it doesn’t have enough charge stored to turn over the engine.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

To confirm a partially discharged battery, check if the car’s lights are dim or if other electronic components are functioning at a lower-than-normal performance. You can also use a multimeter to check the battery’s voltage.

DIY Repair

A simple jump-start should fix the issue if it’s indeed a weak battery. Use a booster or another vehicle’s battery to jump-start your Honda Civic. Remember to connect the positive terminals first, then the negative terminals. Once the cables are connected, start the other vehicle and let it run for a few minutes. Then, try starting your Honda Civic.

Repair/Replacement Cost

If the jump-start works, it’s advisable to replace your battery to avoid future starting problems. A new battery can cost anywhere from $90 to $200, depending on the type and capacity. Keep in mind, if the ABS light stays on after starting the car, you should get your braking system checked by a professional, as the issue could be more than just a weak battery.

The cost of ABS repair varies greatly depending on what component of the system is malfunctioning, but be prepared for costs starting from $100 for simple sensor replacements to $1000+ for more comprehensive repairs.

Honda Civic Won’t Start Only Clicks

Let’s say you tried starting your Civic but instead of turning it on, the vehicle gives a clicking noise. Either the battery is partially or fully dead, or you are dealing with a malfunctioned alternator on hand that is incapable of recharging a battery perfectly to run a car.

If you tried to start your Civic and instead of turning it on, all you got was a clicking sound, this either means that the battery itself is fully or partially dead.


In this situation, when you attempt to start your Honda Civic, you’re met with a clicking sound instead of the engine turning over. This typically means the starter is trying to engage, but isn’t able to crank the engine.


The most common cause of this symptom is a weak or dead battery. However, a malfunctioning alternator, which is unable to properly recharge the battery, could also be at fault.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

To diagnose this issue, you can first check the strength of the battery by observing if the headlights and interior lights are dimmer than usual. You could also use a multimeter to test the battery voltage. If the battery seems fine, the problem might lie with the alternator.

DIY Repair

If you find that your battery is weak or dead, a jump-start from another vehicle or a battery booster should be enough to get your car started. After successfully starting your vehicle with a jump, allow it to run for a while to recharge the battery.

If the alternator is the issue, it’s best to seek professional help as alternator replacement can be complicated without the right tools and knowledge.

Repair/Replacement Cost

A new battery will typically cost between $90 and $200, while alternator replacement can range from $400 to $600, including parts and labor. If you choose to replace the alternator yourself, the part alone usually costs between $150 and $300. Keep in mind that these costs can vary significantly based on your location and the specific model of your Honda Civic.

Is Your Honda Civic’s Battery Empty?

The easiest way to recognize a dead battery would be multifunctional interior lighting and a faulty radio. A battery that stays under 12 V even after being charged for an appropriate amount of time has to be renewed. You can easily check the voltage with a commercially available multimeter. Try looking for help to get you started and head straight to the mechanic to replace the batteries.

In many modern-day cars, the new battery needs time to settle in or you may get an error message from the car’s computer. A battery can also be drained if you haven’t started the car for weeks, sometimes months. The starter turns poorly for a battery with low voltage. Here, too, the driver may require assistance.

Again, let’s say you forgot to turn off a power consumer during parking. There is no connection between the electrical lines – rather damage to them. You cannot jump-start here. Disconnect the battery and clean the contacts. The negative cable has to be removed first and connected last. Drive to a dealership if this doesn’t work either.

Honda Civic Won’t Start

A defective alternator will no longer charge a battery. If you have a jump start, there should be sufficient charge in the battery after several miles. That is the case for intact batteries; older batteries will need a bit longer.


The battery does not charge if the alternator is bad; instead, the remaining voltage is consumed by all electrical consumers. Whether you can get to a mechanic on time is simply a matter of luck. It is easy to spot a problem in the charging process through the charging indicator light found in the cockpit.

You should see this light up for a few seconds upon start and go out afterward. In other cases, the alternator might be faulty to the extent that the engine cannot retain power in the spark plugs even if it somehow started. We recommend boosting your engine in these circumstances.

Signs of a dead battery in your Honda Civic could include dim multifunctional interior lighting and a malfunctioning radio. The starter might also turn poorly, and if you’ve left a power consumer on while parking, the battery may be drained.


Batteries can become depleted over time due to age, or they might not hold a charge due to a faulty alternator. Lack of use can also drain a battery – if you haven’t started the car for weeks, or sometimes months, the battery could be depleted.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

To diagnose a dead battery, you can use a commercially available multimeter. If the battery stays under 12 V even after being charged for an appropriate amount of time, it’s likely dead and needs to be replaced.

DIY Repair

To get your car started, you might need a jump-start. Once it’s running, drive it straight to a mechanic to replace the battery. It’s worth noting that in many modern-day cars, the new battery may need some time to “settle in,” or you may get an error message from the car’s computer.

If the issue was due to leaving a power consumer on during parking, disconnect the battery and clean the contacts. Make sure to remove the negative cable first and reconnect it last. If this doesn’t work, you may need to take your vehicle to a dealership.

Repair/Replacement Cost

A new battery can range from $90 to $200, depending on its type and capacity. If the alternator is the culprit, the cost of a replacement, including parts and labor, typically ranges from $400 to $600.

If you choose to replace the alternator yourself, the part alone can cost between $150 and $300. As always, these costs can vary based on your location and the specific model of your Honda Civic.

Honda Civic Won’t Start And Light Flashes

The dashboard lights are flashing but your Honda Civic isn’t starting – this is a tell-tale sign of an issue with the ignition system of your car. It might have a loose or weak connection to the battery. You must replace the car’s ignition switch if this is the case.

If the headlights are the ones flickering and not the dash lights, this generally means that the battery is halfway dead or the connection is bad. Check for loose terminals and if necessary, boost your car.


When attempting to start your Honda Civic, you notice that the dashboard lights are flashing, but the car won’t start. Alternatively, if it’s the headlights that are flickering, this may also signal an issue.


The flashing dashboard lights could indicate an issue with the ignition system of your car, such as a loose or weak connection to the battery. Flickering headlights, on the other hand, typically mean that the battery is partially drained or there’s a bad connection.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

If your dashboard lights are flashing, start by checking all of the connections from your battery to your ignition system. Look for any loose, frayed, or corroded wires that could be interrupting the electrical current.

If it’s the headlights that are flickering, check the connections at the battery terminals for any signs of corrosion or looseness.

DIY Repair

If your ignition switch is faulty, you may need to replace it. This task can be a bit complex and is best done by a professional unless you’re comfortable with advanced DIY repairs. If the headlights are flickering, you may need to tighten the battery terminals or clean off any corrosion present. A boost or jump-start may also be necessary if the battery is partially drained.

Repair/Replacement Cost

The cost of replacing an ignition switch can range from $150 to $250, including labor. A new battery will typically cost between $90 and $200. If the issue is just loose or corroded battery terminals, the repair might only require a few dollars for cleaning supplies or new terminal clamps.

However, these costs can vary significantly based on your location and the specific model of your Honda Civic.

Honda Civic Won’t Start And Won’t Click

Suppose your Honda Civic won’t start and there is a clicking sound coming from under the hood when you try to turn the ignition. This time, the problem is more than likely a drained battery. Check if you can still turn on the lights, radio, or any of the other electronic components of your vehicle. If you cannot, your doubts should be confirmed.

Honda Civic Won’t Start

A temporary fix should be jumping the battery. You just need enough power to get to a mechanic. Remember that simply because you could get your car to start by jumping the battery, it does not guarantee that it will not display the same problem the next time you try to turn it on and off.

This is why it’s best to always leave your vehicle running until you get to a repair shop to avoid further complications.


When trying to start your Honda Civic, the car refuses to start and there is no clicking sound coming from under the hood. Also, the lights, radio, and other electronic components fail to turn on.


The most likely culprit in this scenario is a completely drained or dead battery. When a battery is entirely out of charge, it can’t provide the necessary power to start the car or run any of the electrical components.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

You can confirm a dead battery by attempting to turn on the headlights, radio, or any other electronic components. If none of these devices work, it’s a clear sign that the battery is completely drained.

DIY Repair

A jump-start is your best temporary solution to this issue. You’ll need jumper cables and a working vehicle. Connect the positive (red) clamp to the positive terminal of the dead battery and the other end to the positive terminal of the good battery.

Then, connect the negative (black) clamp to the good battery’s negative terminal, and the other end to a grounded metal part of the dead car, away from the battery. Once connected, start the working car, wait a few minutes, then try to start the dead car.

Repair/Replacement Cost

Once your car is running, drive it directly to a repair shop. If the battery is indeed dead, you will likely need to replace it. The cost of a new car battery can range from $90 to $200, but this price can fluctuate based on the specific model of your Honda Civic.

The labor cost for installing a new battery is usually around $30-$40, but some shops might install it for free with the purchase of a new battery.

Honda Civic Won’t Start And Won’t Crank

Does your Civic produce no cranking sound even after you turn the key to activate the engine? Why? There are a few possible answers to this but the most probable is a dead battery. Check the battery.

Make sure all the terminal connectors are secured and have a smooth connection. From there, start externally jumping the battery with a booster pack. Alternatively, you can get a fellow driver to help.


Despite turning the ignition key, your Honda Civic doesn’t produce a cranking sound, and the engine fails to start.


A likely reason for this situation is a completely dead battery. In some cases, loose or corroded terminal connectors may disrupt the connection between the battery and the car’s electrical system.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

Inspect the battery terminals for corrosion or looseness. A visual inspection may reveal these issues. However, if the terminals seem fine, the battery itself might be dead. You can use a multimeter to measure the battery voltage. If it’s significantly below 12 volts, the battery is likely drained.

DIY Repair

Before attempting to jump-start the battery, ensure that the terminal connectors are secured and corrosion-free. Use a wire brush to remove any corrosion if necessary. You can then try to jump-start the battery using a booster pack or with the help of another car and a set of jumper cables.

Repair/Replacement Cost

If the battery is entirely dead and can’t be revived with a jump-start, you’ll need to replace it. The cost for a new battery generally ranges between $90 and $200, depending on the specific battery type your Honda Civic requires. Installation costs are usually around $30-$40, but some battery retailers may offer free installation with the purchase of a new battery.

Honda Civic Won’t Start While Inclining

Your Civic may not start when parked on an incline while the battery is fully functional. In this position, you will be able to crank the engine. This is indicative of a defective or clogged fuel pump system. First of all, understand if it is safe to roll your Civic down the hill while having it in Neutral gear. When it is on flat land, try to start the engine.

At this point, if you can start the engine, this will confirm the speculation mentioned above. Replace the fuel pump system as soon as possible.


You find your Honda Civic refusing to start when parked on an incline, despite the battery being fully functional and the engine cranking.


This situation might indicate a defective or clogged fuel pump system. The fuel may not be able to reach the engine due to the incline, especially if the fuel pump is weak or the fuel filter is clogged.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

First, ensure it’s safe to roll your Honda Civic down the hill while it’s in Neutral gear. Once you reach a flat surface, try to start the engine again.

DIY Repair

If the engine starts successfully on flat ground, this strengthens the theory of a defective fuel pump system. Depending on your level of expertise, you may be able to replace the fuel pump or filter yourself.

Repair/Replacement Cost

Should you choose to take your vehicle to a mechanic for a fuel pump replacement, expect to spend between $600 to $1000, depending on labor rates and the specific model of your Honda Civic.

If the issue is merely a clogged fuel filter, the replacement cost will be much lower, typically between $50 and $150. This includes the cost of the new filter and labor for installation.

Honda Civic Won’t Start When It Has Fuel and Spark

Your Civic might have fuel and a spark is forming in the ignition but it still doesn’t make the engine crank. If you want to narrow down the causes, the most probable one would be a problem with the airflow. In addition to fuel and spark, a car requires air to start properly. These are some of the potential problems:

  • Fuel filter: A blocked fuel filter can stop your engine from the proper volume of fuel. The engine would crank without starting. You should replace the fuel filter every 20,000 miles. Make sure you have a word with the mechanic when you bring your car in and ask for a replacement if needed.
  • Fuel pump: Get the fuel pump checked. A blocked fuel pump has similar effects to that of a clogged fuel filter. Without the right fuel pressure, your car may crank but it will refuse to start.
  • Timing belt: The job of a timing belt is to ensure the engine valves and components are in sync. A worn-out or broken timing belt is the most common reason for air escaping in the engine, causing an air leak. A deteriorated broken timing belt prevents your car from starting. Interestingly enough, this component can fail while you are driving.

Get the timing belt inspected by a mechanic. A few automakers recommend changing the timing belt every 5 years.


Your Honda Civic doesn’t start even though there is fuel and a spark. You may notice that the engine cranks, but fails to fire up.


Even though your Honda Civic may have sufficient fuel and a spark, it is not starting. This could be due to an issue with the airflow which is just as critical for engine ignition. A number of potential problems can arise in this scenario.

One such issue could be a blocked fuel filter. When this happens, the engine is deprived of the right amount of fuel it needs to run, causing it to crank without starting. Similarly, if your fuel pump is faulty or blocked, it can produce the same effect as a clogged fuel filter. Without the proper pressure to deliver fuel, your car might crank, but it won’t start.

The timing belt also plays a crucial role in your car’s operation. It is responsible for keeping the engine valves and other components synchronized. If the timing belt is worn out or broken, it could lead to an air leak by allowing air to escape.

This can prevent your car from starting. Intriguingly, a timing belt can fail even while you’re driving, and in more severe cases, this can lead to substantial damage to the engine.

Diagnosis / Troubleshooting

Check your vehicle maintenance history to see when your fuel filter and timing belt were last changed. If it’s been longer than the recommended intervals, these components could be the culprits. Inspecting the fuel pump may require professional expertise.

DIY Repair

Replacing a fuel filter is a manageable task for someone with basic mechanic skills, although it can be messy. However, replacing a timing belt or fuel pump usually requires professional skills due to their locations and the complexity of the task.

Repair/Replacement Cost

The cost of replacing a fuel filter typically ranges from $50 to $150, including labor. A fuel pump replacement can cost between $600 and $1000. The replacement of a timing belt can range from $500 to $900, depending on the model of your Honda Civic and local labor rates. Always consult with a mechanic to get an accurate quote.

We have mentioned jump-starting a battery multiple times throughout this article, so it’s an important element of batteries. Here’s how you can jump-start a battery without fail:

(To recharge the battery properly, we suggest running a lap on the country road or highway. Detach and reattach the cables in the same order. As you are handling electricity, you must be careful or you can end up damaging the sensitive electronics onboard.)

How To Jump-Start A Battery

  • Have a look at the operating instructions before getting to the actual procedure to see if there are any special considerations to be mindful of. For starters, the jump start cable has to have a proper cross-section and satisfy the ISO 6722 (DIN 72553) standard.
  • Turn off the ignition in both cars.
  • Connect the red positive cable to the positive terminal once the battery is full and to the positive terminal of the car battery that has been drained empty. Make sure the connection is stable.
  • Connect the black negative cable to the battery when it is full at the negative pole to the other car’s earth point (the battery has to be empty). The ground point has to be mentioned in the owner’s manual, otherwise, a bare metal point has to be located on the engine block.
  • The vehicle should now start with an intact battery. Allow the empty battery to charge for a while.
  • All things done right, the other car should have started by now. If the problem persists after several attempts, some internal issues cannot be solved with one jump start.
  • Lastly, take out the starter cable in the right sequence: Black negative – full battery first and then the empty ones. Same order with the positive cable – full battery first.

Can The Main Relay Cause No Spark

The main relay on a Honda is tasked with transmitting power to the computer of the engine. It also regulates the fuel pump, delivering power to the fuel injector. For a Civic engine that turns over but also dies quickly, a relay issue can be the reason. A bad main relay can stop cranking in an engine.

Honda Civic Won’t Start

Moreover, it can make the fuel pressure drop, leading to a failed start. The primary relay controls fuel but not the spark. Without a spark or prime in the fuel pump, your car can be signaling a problem with the main relay. However, if a spark is the only thing lacking, there is likely another issue cooking up under the hood. You should get the distributor or timing belt inspected.

Honda Civic Won’t Start: Maintenance Tips for Your Honda Civic

Remember, a well-maintained car is a reliable car. Invest time in regular maintenance to prevent the inconvenience of a car that won’t start. These preventative measures can enhance your Honda Civic’s performance, longevity, and overall driving experience. Maintenance might seem like a hassle, but it’s an investment that pays off in the long run.

1. Consistent Battery Health Checks

Battery health is crucial to prevent starting problems in your Honda Civic. Regular inspections can prevent unexpected power issues. Check for signs of corrosion and make sure the battery terminals are always clean. A professional battery assessment is recommended each year after the battery turns three years old.

2. Proper Ignition System Maintenance

The ignition switch is an often overlooked component. These switches wear out over time, which can cause a no-start issue. If the key is hard to turn or you observe flickering dashboard lights, it may be time to check and possibly replace the ignition switch.

3. Starter Motor Attention

The starter motor is vital to get your car running. Should you hear a grinding noise when starting your car or if it intermittently refuses to start, the starter motor might be at fault. Immediate attention can prevent a total breakdown.

4. Fuel System Upkeep

Maintaining the health of your fuel system is essential to avoid starting issues. Regularly replace the fuel filter as per the car’s maintenance schedule. Also, ensure that you are using high-quality fuel to keep the fuel pump functioning smoothly and avoid fuel filter clogs.

5. Regular Spark Plug Changes

Spark plugs are vital to the ignition system. Replace these components as per the car’s maintenance schedule. Symptoms of failing spark plugs can include difficulty starting, rough running, or a decrease in fuel efficiency.

6. Routine Anti-Theft System Checks

The anti-theft system in your Honda Civic can prevent the car from starting if it malfunctions. Regularly verify that this system is operating correctly. Immediate attention to any issues can save you from unexpected trouble.

7. Frequent Professional Inspections

Proactive professional inspections can help detect potential issues before they become major problems. This preventative measure can avoid expensive repairs and extend the lifespan of your vehicle.

8. Honda Civic Maintenance and Servicing Schedule

The Honda Civic maintenance schedule is slightly different than other Honda models. The maintenance schedule commences at 7,500 miles and extends up to 120,000 miles. However, with diligent care, your Honda Civic could potentially outlast this range.

7,500, 22,500, 37,500, 52,500, 67,500, 82,500 Miles:

During these milestones, the following services are recommended:

  • Oil and filter change
  • Fluids check and replacement
  • Brake inspection
  • Throttle linkage lubrication
  • Tire inspection and pressure check
  • Tire rotation

15,000, 45,000, 75,000, 105,000 Miles:

In addition to the previous services, the following maintenance tasks should be added:

  • Transmission servicing
  • Park brake inspection
  • Lights inspection
  • Fuel system inspection
  • Chassis and hinges lubrication
  • Oil drain plug replacement
  • Wheel rotation and balancing
  • Undercarriage inspection
  • Shock absorbers inspection
  • Clutch pedal check and adjustment
  • A/C and heater operation inspection
  • Spark plugs replacement
  • Differential oil inspection
  • Steering gearbox and steering wheel inspection
  • Brake linings inspection
  • Windshield wipers replacement
  • Drive shaft bolt re-torquing
  • All hinges lubrication
  • Air conditioning filter replacement

30,000, 60,000, 90,000, 120,000 Miles:

Along with the previous services, the following additional tasks should be executed:

  • PCV valve service
  • Battery service and cable cleaning
  • Differential oil replacement
  • Fuel tank cap gasket inspection
  • Fuel lines and connections check
  • Transfer case oil inspection
  • Air elements check
  • All exterior and interior lamps inspection
  • Propeller shaft lubrication
  • Wheel bearings lubrication
  • Road test and quality control
  • Propeller shaft flex coupling check
  • Battery and terminal cleaning

Staying on top of your Honda Civic’s maintenance schedule ensures optimal performance and a longer lifespan for your vehicle. Regular maintenance can prevent many common issues, including the frustrating scenario of your car refusing to start.

Honda Civic No-Start Diagnosis Facts:

Honda Civics may not start due to a dead battery, an alternator issue, or a failed starter. Dead batteries cause 38% of these problems. Alternator issues make up 27% and failed starters account for 20%. Other causes account for 15%. Fixes often include replacing the battery, fuel pump, ignition switch, ignition lock cylinder, starter, camshaft position sensor, or crankshaft position sensor.

Battery replacement costs between $343 and $354. Fuel pump replacement can cost between $892 and $1,030. The ignition switch replacement is $183-$224 and the ignition lock cylinder replacement costs $231-$279. Starter replacement is $426-$580, while the camshaft sensor costs $185-$239.

Crankshaft sensor replacement falls between $175-$231. A professional diagnostic test can identify the right part to replace. The solution can involve changing the alternator, starter, or battery, cleaning connections, or repairing the ignition or fuel system. Car systems can be complex and replacing parts based on guesses is discouraged.

Cars have a network that lets all systems talk to each other. This is good for trained technicians but can confuse DIY repairers. The exact cost of a repair depends on what’s wrong. A noisy or leaking fuel pump should be checked immediately. A failing pump can lose pressure and cause a no-start issue.

Honda Civic Won’t Start: In Conclusion…

In this article, we tried to diagnose the common answers to why a Honda Civic won’t start. Some of the reasons and solutions are very similar – mainly because they all originate from a weak or dead battery, faulty alternator, ignition switch, the battery terminals, connection wires, or fuel pump system.

If any sort of power is present, the issue is not the battery. In contrast, if you cannot detect any power at all, the battery is most likely dead and needs a boost.

FAQs On Honda Civic Won’t Start

Here are some popular FAQs on why your Honda Civic won’t start…

How Many Miles Will a Honda Civic Last

Honda Civics are known for their longevity, with many models reliably running beyond 200,000 miles if properly maintained. However, the lifespan of a Honda Civic isn’t only about miles traveled but also how it has been cared for. Regular oil changes, timely tire rotations, and prompt responses to any performance issues are key to prolonging the car’s lifespan.

How to Turn on Honda Civic with Key

To start a Honda Civic with a key, insert the key into the ignition slot, which is typically located on the right side of the steering column. Next, turn the key clockwise to the ‘On’ position, wait for the dashboard lights to come on, then turn the key further to start the engine. Ensure that the car is in ‘Park’ or ‘Neutral’ before starting.

Why Is My Honda Civic Not Starting

There could be numerous reasons why your Honda Civic isn’t starting. Common issues include a depleted battery, faulty ignition switch, failing starter motor, or a problem with the fuel system. You might also have a security system issue that’s preventing the car from starting. It’s advisable to have a professional diagnose the exact problem.

How to Fix a Car That Won’t Start

Fixing a car that won’t start often depends on the root cause of the problem. For a dead battery, a jump start may do the trick. If the ignition switch is faulty, it may need replacement. If it’s a fuel system issue, checking the fuel pump or replacing the fuel filter might solve the problem. For more complicated issues, you may need to consult a professional mechanic.

Why Won’t Car Turn Over

A car that won’t turn over often has a dead or weak battery, which may be due to leaving lights on or issues with the alternator. Other potential causes could be a faulty ignition switch, starter, or a problem with the car’s security system. In more serious cases, it could also indicate an engine problem.

How to Jump Start Honda Civic

To jump-start a Honda Civic, you’ll need jumper cables and a second car with a working battery. Start by parking the vehicles close to each other and turning off both engines. Connect the red positive clamp to the dead battery’s positive terminal, then do the same for the working battery. Next, connect the black negative clamp to the working battery’s negative terminal, then to a metal, unpainted surface on the dead car. Start the working car’s engine, then try starting the Honda Civic.

How to Start a Honda Civic with a Screwdriver

Starting a Honda Civic with a screwdriver, often referred to as hot-wiring, is strongly discouraged. It’s illegal, can cause serious damage to the car, and may void any existing warranties. If you’ve lost your keys or can’t start the car with them, call a locksmith or your car dealer for assistance.

Where to Attach Jumper Cables on Honda Civic

To attach jumper cables to a Honda Civic, identify the battery terminals under the hood. The positive terminal is usually marked with a ‘+’ or is red in color, while the negative terminal is marked with a ‘-‘ or is black. Connect the red positive clamp to the Civic’s positive terminal, and the black negative clamp to a clean, unpainted metal surface on the car, not directly to the battery’s negative terminal.

How to Reset Tire Pressure Light on Honda Civic

To reset the tire pressure light on a Honda Civic, first, ensure all tires are at the correct pressure. Then, turn the ignition switch to ‘ON’ but don’t start the engine. Press the tire pressure reset button, located under the steering wheel, until the tire pressure light blinks three times. After this, turn the ignition switch to ‘OFF’. The light should now be reset when you start the engine again.

How to Unlock Steering Wheel Honda Civic without Key

If your Honda Civic’s steering wheel is locked, try to turn the steering wheel left and right while gently turning the ignition key. This often disengages the lock. If you don’t have the key, it’s best to contact a professional locksmith or your car dealer, as attempting to force the wheel unlocked could cause damage.

How to Reset 2016 Honda Civic After Dead Battery

To reset a 2016 Honda Civic after a dead battery, you’ll need to start the engine and let it idle in Park for about 10 minutes. This helps the car’s computer recalibrate itself. You may also need to manually reset the clock and any pre-set radio stations, as these often get erased when the battery dies.

Why Honda Civics Are Bad

While Honda Civics are generally well-regarded for their reliability and fuel efficiency, there can be some drawbacks. Some common complaints include a lack of power in base models, unexciting interior design, and issues with the infotainment system. However, it’s important to remember that all cars have pros and cons, and the Honda Civic is no exception.

Can a Honda Civic Jump Start a Truck

Yes, a Honda Civic can jump-start a truck if the truck’s battery voltage is similar (typically 12 volts). However, due to the size difference in their engines, it might take longer for the Civic to transfer enough power to start the truck. Always ensure both vehicles are off when connecting and disconnecting the jumper cables to avoid electrical damage.

Why Is My Honda Not Starting

Similar to a Honda Civic, a Honda not starting could be due to a variety of issues like a dead battery, faulty ignition switch, problem with the fuel system, or a failing starter motor. It could also be a security system problem. For an accurate diagnosis, it’s recommended to have a professional inspect your vehicle.

Why Will My Car Crank but Not Start

If your car cranks but doesn’t start, this could indicate issues with the fuel system, ignition, or engine timing. It might also be due to a faulty sensor, such as the crankshaft position sensor or camshaft position sensor. Because this problem can be related to many possible faults, it’s best to have a professional mechanic diagnose and fix the issue.

Why Is My Honda Civic Screen Black

A black screen on your Honda Civic’s infotainment system can be due to software glitches, a blown fuse, or a more serious hardware issue. Try doing a hard reset by turning off the car, waiting for a few minutes, and then restarting. If the screen remains black, consider taking your Civic to a Honda dealer or a professional repair shop for a diagnosis.

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