I have a 1996 Cavalier that won't start

Asked by Oct 12, 2014 at 01:45 AM about the 1996 Chevrolet Cavalier Sedan FWD

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

It was running fine 2 weeks ago ,then on occasion it wouldn't do anything until jumped,
then run fine. Got new battery (had a bad cell) but same thing still happened, turn the
key and it did not start. dash lights, radio, fuel pump all are as normal when I turn the
key but doesn't turn over. Replaced the Ignition switch, starter and battery all together
but still when we turn the key it doesn't turn over. A friend mentioned having to "reset it"
? I'm lost here. Any helpful suggestions?

3 Answers


Are the starter and battery connections tight and clean? Did you get a new or rebuilt starter? You get what you pay for with electronics. If you bought the cheapest one Autozone, pep boys, advanced, ect sells it might be bad. If you got a used one out of a junkyard then it too can be toast.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Battery terminals are clean and tight , Starter is a new one. Went to get a new key cylinder but then run into the dilemma of just the cylinder or cylinder with the wiring . difference of 25.00 and 190.00 ! that's when someone said it might just need reset. I am not a wise mechanic and can't afford one at this time ( which Really sucks ) ! Originally just thought it was the ignition switch $50 plus new battery $90 and then new starter and cylinoid....etc, etc. Thinking of investing a $1 of gas and a match ! just kidding :-) But I've kind-of fell down the rabbit hole and there are too many options and can't afford them all. Murphy's law tells me it is a quick fix ! damned if I do, Damned if I don't type scenario which ever way I go. I've heard reset computer , Fuseable link , Starter cylinder by itself, and with new wiring . I wish I had an old car ( pre-computer ) !


I've never heard of resetting the car. Oh you don't need to waste the $1. Just take the gas cap off n stuff a rag down into the neck, then light the rag n run! LOL. Oh I totally understand where your coming from. Its now to the point you want yo find out what's wrong with it because it could be something simple. I've been around cars most of my life and yes I miss my 77 Trans Am and 67 Firebird convertible a lot when I'm working on modern crap. I would start with the switch. Check your wiring on it and see if the wires are good and none of the terminals are pulled back or out the plugs. If your wires are good just replace the switch. If they are bad look for one with wires in a junkyard or on eBay. Keep me posted.

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