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2000 Mazda Protege (standard) won't start.

i think I broke my car :(

well I just bought this car a few months ago and all seemed well. I bought new tires, changed the oil, had the brakes inspected, you know the things daddy's tell their daughters to always be sure of.
I have had no problems with the car till last weekend. My boyfriend and I got into an argument, long story short I sped off, using his words "hot rod style". I smelt burned rubber (not so new tires anymore) but I figured it was just that. When I got back home my boyfriend said that he smelt something burning under the hood. No smoke or fire just a burning odor. The next morning my car wouldn't start.
We jumped it and it ran just fine. Did the errands for the day no problem.
The next morning it wouldn't turn on again, this time when we jumped it, it just wouldn't start. I don't have a lot of money so I can't do much with it. My father also past away so I was hoping someone on here could help tell me in what kinda direction to go in.
I have checked the battery at AutoZone and they said it was fine. the fuses are all good as well. I'm just confused and so lost on cars. please help me.


  • When you jump it, does the starter engage and spin the engine?
    Did you check to see where the burning smell is coming from?
    I assume you are sure you have gas, engine oil is full?
  • edited June 2013
    With the burned rubber smell & all, these symptoms starting after an unusually quick start, I'm sort of concerned about the timing belt. The timing belt is stressed more during quick accelerations. Does a 2000 Protege have a rubber timing belt? Does this car have a 1.6L DOHC engine? I think that one does have a timing belt, and the inspection interval is 60k, and 90k, and replacement recommended at 105K. Double check your owner's manual or w/Mazda dealership as these specs varies car to car & even in the state the car was sold.

    In any event, if the timing belt has broken or jammed, that would prevent the engine from starting. If you think that is even a possiblity, don't attempt to start it again until you've towed it to a mechanic and had him verify the timing belt condition, as starting the engine w/a broken timing belt can do serious damage to the valves. Which is something you definitely don't want.

    Edit. The 1.6 from what I see is a free-wheeler, so the fact that you've attempted to start it may not mean the valves are toast. Yet. But with these symptoms it is safer to have a mechanic do a look-see before trying to start it again.
  • gallant: I do have gas as well as oil and we couldn't identify the burning odor. but how do I check if it spins?

    GeorgeSanJose: I do not have money to get towed just yet. I would have to wait at least a month for that and I don't have time for that.
  • edited June 2013
    The first step to do whenever the starter motor for the engine doesn't work is to remove the battery connections and clean the connections using a battery post cleaning brush. If the battery isn't getting charged there may be a problem with the alternator or in the charging circuit wiring.

    I'm sorry to hear the news about your dad (and today is Farther's Day). In order to learn more about how autos basically work you could purchase a self help book about it. There are all kinds of books available you could get through Amazon that cover the subject and are pretty easy to understand. If you have any questions on things we could help there. Knowing at least some basic things will be a big help in saving on some repairs and towing bills. Hopefully your insurance company will cover towing charges if you need them at some point.
  • If you can't afford a tow, and that isn't a very temporary situation due to some emergency, then you probably can't afford to own a car.
  • On some engine-- I don't know if it applies to this one though -- it is possible to remove some rubber plugs from the timing belt cover and visually inspect the timing belt. You can't usually tell how worn it is b/c you can only see the outside surface, but you could at least tell if it was intact or not. If towing isn't $$-wise possible, maybe a visual inspection is something at least.

    On the other hand, it is quite possible this problem has nothing to do w/the timing belt. Maybe it just needs a basic tune-up.

  • "Maybe it just needs a basic tune-up."

    Perhaps that may be true, but...if the OP cannot even afford to have the car towed...I am not sure how she expects to have the car put back into proper working order. Parts and labor for a basic tune-up (or...God forbid...for actual repairs) will almost surely cost more than a tow to the nearest shop.

    Aside from Divine Intervention, I am not sure what the solution might be for the OP at this point.
  • oh well i cant afford a tow right now cause i lost my job due to cut backs and my boyfriend left me and stole the last $2000 that was in our joint account even though he hasn't had a job in 7 years. he also took my tv, bed, and cell phone. so im putting what little i do have into a lawyer. so excuse me if my difficult time right now has offended VDCdriver and oldtimer 11. im just trying to find some help and if you aren't here to help then why are you here at all?

    Thank you very much GeorgeSanJose i really do appreciate your help. my grandfather will be in town next weekend to help me.
  • update

    it was the starter. new one in (grandfather showed me how) and it started right up.
    though from the looks of it ima need a new clutch soon....oh the joys of a car -_-
    Thank you all that helped. I appreciate it.
  • Thanks for the update @AnaisH and glad to hear the trouble wasn't real tough to fix. Hopefully you will be able to get some good results on the other troubles you are having. Think about getting a basic repair book for cars. A little knowledge can go a long way in helping solve issues like that.
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