Jeep Wrangler failing to start can be a huge problem for any owner anywhere. This issue can arise in your vehicle because of various reasons such as a weak battery, faulty starter, faulty wiring, damaged spark plug, clogged fuel line, and so on.
Diagnosing the exact problem that is preventing your Jeep Wrangler from starting can be tricky and different components can be at fault. The issue of the vehicle failing to start can also vary as sometimes it will not start even when it has power and sometimes the engine won’t turn over when the car is hot.
By following the simple guidelines described in detail below, you will be able to properly diagnose the exact issues that are causing the problems that are preventing your Jeep Wrangler from starting and repair accordingly.
What Causes Jeep Wrangler to Not Start?
Various components work together to start the vehicle and issues in one of them can prevent the entire vehicle from starting. The most common problems are faulty spark plugs, weak or dead batteries, corroded wirings, clogged fuel systems, damaged fuel pumps, low gasoline, faulty alternators, damaged ignition switches, faulty starter relays, and so on.
Why Jeep Wrangler Won’t Start but Has Power?
Fuel system, damaged starter, and low gasoline level are some of the common reasons behind the car failing to start if the battery is not weak or dead and the ignition is getting power but still not starting.
Bad Fuel system
A bad fuel system is one of the most common reasons behind your Jeep Wrangler failing to start even after getting power from the battery. The fuel system consists of the fuel pump, fuel lines, and fuel filter.
The fuel pump creates a vacuum in its chamber to pull out fuel from the fuel tank to insert into the engine manifold. The wires that carry power from the battery to the fuel pump, the bushing, and the terminal on the fuel pump can get damaged and prevent the car from starting.
The fuel lines and the fuel filter can also get clogged because of dust, debris, or carbon accumulation and prevent fuel from reaching the engine manifold.
Other symptoms of a faulty fuel system include fuel tank noises, engine stuttering, engine stalling, power loss, power surges, low fuel economy, and so on. An OBD2 scanner will show error code P0230 for faulty fuel pumps.
Solution: Check the fuel lines and the fuel filter and make sure that they are not clogged. Clean them thoroughly if they have any dust, debris, or carbon accumulation in them. Replace the lines and the filters if they get damaged. Check the wirings and the connection point with a multimeter to make sure they are working properly.
A broken starter can also prevent the car from starting even if the battery is supplying power. The starter uses a small starting gear which engages the engine’s flywheel when the engine is started and gets the engine rotating.
Other than the engine failing to start, a broken starter shows other symptoms like grinding noises when the engine is started, whining noises, smoke coming from inside the car, and oil leaking from inside the engine.
Solution: Check the wirings and the starter solenoid with a multimeter to find out if there are any short circuits and disconnections. Replace it with a new spare part to resolve the issue if the starter has become badly damaged. It will cost about $130-$450 for a spare starter for your Jeep Wrangler.
Low Gasoline Level
Low gasoline levels can also stop your car from starting even when the battery is fully functional. This occurs because there is not enough fuel to supply to the engine of your Jeep Wrangler to start the car. Low fuel warning light will turn on if your gasoline level is too low.
Solution: Fill your fuel tank with clean and fresh gasoline to solve this issue. Always fill up your tank as soon as the warning light starts flashing.
Why Jeep Wrangler Won’t Start and Has No Click?
Sometimes there is no clicking after putting the key in the ignition and the Jeep Wrangler fails to start. This can be caused by several factors such as a weak or dead battery, corroded wires, faulty terminals, damaged alternator, malfunctioning ignition switch, and so on.
Weak or dead battery is the most common reason why your Jeep Wrangler fails to start and does not produce any clicking noise. The battery is one of the most vital components of your vehicle’s starting mechanism as it provides power to the fuel pump, starter, and spark plug.
Other signs that indicate that your car battery is dying are dim headlights, clicking sounds when turning the key, slow cranks, needing to press the gas pedal to start, and backfiring.
Solution: You can jump-start your car with another car battery that is functional but it is a temporary solution. Recharge the battery with a charger until it has sufficient power. Change the car battery entirely if it fails to take charge.
Corroded Battery Wires
Battery cables carry the power from the battery to various components to operate the vehicle. These wires can get damaged or come loose with time and usage especially if you drive on rough terrain.
Usually, the built-in security system of the Jeep Wrangler flashes a red light or beeps when there are disconnected cables. Check all the wirings with a multimeter to make sure that there are no short circuits or disconnections in the wires.
Solution: Replace the damaged and corroded wires with new cables to resolve this issue.
Malfunctioning Battery Terminals
Battery terminals getting corroded or damaged can also hinder the power supply and prevent the vehicle from starting. This can happen due to regular wear and tear and running the vehicle on rough terrains.
Solution: Use a wire brush to scrub off the corrosion on the battery terminal. Apply petroleum jelly on the cable ends before snapping them back onto the battery terminals on your Jeep Wrangler.
A damaged or faulty alternator can also prevent your Jeep Wrangler from starting because a faulty alternator hinders the regular power supply. The alternator is a generator that runs off of the belt which is connected to the engine and it converts the engine’s mechanical power to electrical power to recharge the battery and to run other electrical components.
Other signs of a faulty alternator include frequent stalling, screeching noise coming from the vehicle during starting, dim or overly bright lights, the smell of burning rubber coming from the car, and battery dashboard warning lights turning on.
Solution: Alternators are quite costly at around $200-$800 so make sure that the alternator is damaged and the fault is not in the battery, wires, or any other component before replacement. Replacing the alternator can be quite difficult and taking your Jeep Wrangler to a professional mechanic is recommended.
Malfunctioning Ignition Switch
A faulty ignition switch can also create a no-start situation in your Jeep Wrangler. The ignition switch is responsible for activating a variety of electrical systems in the vehicle.
Symptoms of a faulty ignition switch include engine stalling, engine failure to start, sudden loss of electrical power, and difficulty turning the key. Various reasons like broken springs, worn ignition switch contacts, and temperature issues can be behind the problem of a faulty ignition switch.
Solution: Replace the ignition switch with a new spare part which will cost about $20-$60.
Why Jeep Wrangler Won’t Start When Hot?
Your Jeep Wrangler might get power from the battery and click but still fail to start after getting hot. Damaged spark plugs and clogged fuel injectors are the main reasons why this issue occurs.
Damaged Spark Plug
The spark plug takes power from the battery and creates the necessary flicker that starts the combustion cycle in the cylinder. Spark plugs can become faulty over time due to regular wear and tear, dust or carbon accumulation on the electrodes, and electrode gaps getting too wide or too narrow.
Solution: Check the spark plug and make sure that the electrodes have the correct gap between them. Adjust accordingly if the gap between them becomes too narrow or too wide. Clean the spark plug with a cloth to get the dust or carbon accumulation out of it.
Clogged Fuel Injector
A clogged fuel injector is another reason why your Jeep Wrangler may fail to start when it is hot. Fuel injectors spray a mixture of gasoline and air into the engine intake manifold so that the combustion cycle can start. A faulty fuel injector can prevent your car from starting.
Other symptoms of a faulty fuel injector are engine misfires, rough idle, poor fuel economy, irregular RPM reading, check engine light, fuel leaks, and so on.
Solution: Replace the fuel injector with a spare part which will cost about $40-$100.
Is It Hard to Repair a Jeep Wrangler Starting Issue?
The difficulty of repairing the starting issue in a Jeep Wrangler depends on the severity of the problem and the faulty component. It is very easy to solve issues like dead batteries, disconnected cables, and faulty spark plugs but it can be quite difficult to replace the starter, the alternator, or the ignition switch by yourself.
When Should I Consult a Mechanic for Jeep Wrangler Won’t Start?
You should consult a mechanic if charging the battery, repairing the connection point and the cables, and changing the spark plug do not solve the starting issue or if you cannot figure out which component is causing the exact issue.
How to Prevent the Problem of Jeep Wrangler Not Starting?
Keeping the battery charged, keeping the gasoline tank full, and taking good care of your car can prevent starting problems in your Jeep Wrangler. However, regular wear and tear can cause starting issues even after regular care and maintenance and might require repairing.