We’ve all been there – usually on a cold, winter morning – when a twist of the ignition key produces only a clicking sound instead of the sound of the engine turning over. On some vehicles, you may get a slow, laboured “rrr-rrr” sound instead. Contrary to popular belief, the clicking sound is not the dead battery itself, but the sound of the starter solenoid.
You hear the solenoid because there’s not enough battery power to activate the starter in order to start the engine. The “rrr-rrr” sound is typically the starter spinning with insufficient power to turn over the engine -and sometimes, you may get both the “rrr-rrr” sound followed by the clicking.
No matter which sound your vehicle makes, it means you’ll probably need a jump-start to get the engine running and, after that, an inspection to check the condition of the battery, battery cables and possibly other electrical items, such as the alternator. Older batteries may simply require replacement. ACDelco offers a wide range of Professional Series batteries for most cars, trucks, minivans and SUVs. Ask your ACDelco-affiliated service centre for more information.