Ford Focus. When i turn the ignition, the engine will not start. The lights and electronics will flicker while i am turning the ignition. I do not hear the engine "turning over".

What is my issue?

If i can resolve the issue myself with something simple, should i still take it to a mechanic?


  • 1
    Have you checked the battery voltage? Commented Sep 21, 2015 at 16:49
  • If i knew how to do that, i probably would not be asking this question. Assume my car knowledge is very limited.
    – prolink007
    Commented Sep 21, 2015 at 16:54
  • 1
    By using a multimeter ... you can get one cheap at Harbor Freight ($7-8). Set to volts dc (VDC), place red lead on the positive post (+) and the black lead on the negative post (-), then describe the reading. You are looking for something about 12.5vdc. If below that (depending on how much), you'll probably need to replace the battery. I just replaced the one in my truck which was reading about 10.1vdc after it had been running. It would still start the truck, but sluggishly. I'd bet yours is worse off than that. You might also see what the reading is with it running (after jump start). Commented Sep 21, 2015 at 17:05

2 Answers 2


This is usually the symptom of a dead battery. Has the car been sitting for a long time without being driven? Or did you leave the headlights or interior lights on?

Try jump starting it (see owner's manual for instructions) and drive it for a while to charge the battery. (I usually find that 30 minutes or so of driving is sufficient; make sure not to switch off or stall the car during this time.)

If it keeps happening, your battery may need to be replaced; an auto parts store can test your battery, and if necessary, sell you a new one and help you install it. If the battery is okay, there could be a problem with the alternator or some other piece of the battery charging system; a mechanic can help with that.

  • No lights were left on in the car. I checked the voltage on the battery and it seemed fine. I jump started and cranked immediately. I left it running for a couple hours. Turned it off and it cranked back up. I parked the car and must have turned a light on when getting out. =O This morning the car would not crank again, because of battery. I jump started again and it was fine. Lol, what a journey. Hopefully it will crank next time i try to crank. Thanks
    – prolink007
    Commented Sep 22, 2015 at 15:35

as said before the battery might have gone bad ,else the alternator . check with the auto shop if the battery is good . if no change batteries and if yes check alternator .

  • Welcome to mechanics.stackexchange.com! This doesn't appear to add anything new to the original post. When you have enough reputation, you will be able to comment on posts. Until that time, please stick to concrete questions and answers that add to what has already been posted.
    – anonymous2
    Commented Dec 3, 2016 at 12:20

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