Last night my car wouldn’t start


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Well-Known Member
Apr 15, 2009
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I wasn’t too sure where to put this. Chit Chat is always the safest I guess.

I’ve never had any issues with my car. It’s 5 years old, which sounds old but it’s in quite good condition and I get it serviced and MOT’d regularly.

Last night I leave my clients house, put everything in the boot and go to start the car. Nothing. The engine doesn’t make a noise. Lights on the dashboard are flashing and all I can hear is a ticking sound. I got myself all worked up. I’m in an area I don’t really know and it wasn’t looking too savoury. Phoned my hubby who reminded me I have AA cover. They arrived within half an hour. There was a problem with the battery which he replaced and car is now fine.

This has really got me thinking. I was all worked up last night. Even when I was home and had been home for a while I still couldn’t relax. As it’s summer it was still light and the weather was good, but what if it was winter? If that’s how worked up I got last night what would I be like on a dark, cold winters night? Maybe if I was closer to home or in an area I knew it wouldn’t have been so bad.

Has this happened to anyone else? Has it made you think twice about being mobile?
I've had a couple of cars with "Russian Roulette" starter motors - where occasionally when you turned the key, nothing would happen (probably because of a dodgy winding on the starter motor somewhere or something like that)... although I found giving the starter motor a tap with a lump hammer tended to sort the problem out, so used to carry a lump hammer around in the boot in that particular car for that very purpose!

I had a combination of a dodgy battery and dodgy glowplugs require an AA call-out back in the winter of 2003 though, when I was still driving up from Wiltshire to visit Sonia in Shrewsbury - and needed to get back down to Wiltshire for work - not surprisingly I was a bit late for work that day!

Then an alternator failure caused us to have to call the AA out on the M62 near Rochdale, when driving Sonia back from hospital in Wakefield last October. Thankfully the AA man was a real star and got us back home by following us in his van and swapping the battery over every 30-40 miles or so.
Just thinking then.....if you are mobile can you put your AA membership through as a business expense?
Russian Roulette starter motor. Lol.

The AA cover is free with my person current account.
there is nothing worse than your car not makes you feel so damned useless.

Mr chick's car had a starting motor problem which would be fixed with the end of a hammer. I can remember being in Derby with a college friend and we came out a multiplex to go back to her house and his little nova wouldn't start, so I naturally got the hammer out of the boot, give the starting motor a whack and calmly started the car. My friend's face was a picture, she looked at me as if I was a bona fide mechanic!

My tips for mobile would be:

make sure you have recovery cover up to date (which you have).
I am sure that I have been told before if I ever break down and with the AA if you say that you are on your own they normally send someone quicker, it has happened to me before and they were really busy but still got to me within half an hour which was fab as I also had my wee son in the car at the time.


Such things are always a concern but there isnt much you can do other than have some AA or similar cover and a mobile phone that works.

Another handy thing is that many sat nav systems (or phones these days) have the ability to tell you where you are (if you are no longer at the clients house).

This way if you felt uneasy you could call someone to come and keep you company while you wait for recovery.

It is a scary thing even when in your car, so make sure you have the things in your car which would make you feel safe and comfortable in such an event.

During the heavy snow in January I carried enough in my car I probably could have lived in there for a good few days if need be :green:

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