2006 PT Cruiser Won't Turn Over

Hi! Here’s the deal. My PT Cruiser was starting fine two weeks ago, but after a frigid cold spell, it wouldn’t start, even when hooked up to jumper cables. It turned over fine, but wouldn’t start.

I checked and replaced the spark plugs and cleaned out the wells of some gunk, which I thought would solve the problem. When it didn’t, we moved it into the garage to warm it up. Once it had warmed up a bit, we tried to start it with no success. At that point, it still turned over.

I thought maybe I’d messed up the spark plug replacement, so I pulled off the manifold again and checked them. I cleaned out the insides of the spark plug wires, and then put everything back into place and tried to start it. That’s when it stopped turning over.

We tried hooking up a full new battery, but it made no difference. There’s a hum but no clicking or anything. My idea was that the starter motor is trying to start but there’s too much resistance, but I don’t know for sure. What else could the issue be and how do I fix it?

If you need more details, my car is a 2006 Chrysler PT Cruiser Limited Edition without a turbocharged engine. Thank you!

You should measure the voltage at the starter connectors to verify if there is sufficient power.

Do you see a red dot lit in the instrument cluster with the ignition on?

Clean all connections including ground to the motor.

You cleaned out the inside of the spark plug wires???


Is it still cold outside? If so it could be a frozen gas line.

I haven’t seen a frozen gas line since they started adding 10% ethanol to the fuel.

It is very rare, but maybe 4 years ago my 03 trailblazer did not start in 0 degree or so temp, so I threw some heet in the gas and put on the battery tender, Starting fluid did nothing, tried many starts every 20 minutes, after an hour and 1/2 it started up and have not had a problem since, though I did do a seafoam treatment prior to this cold spell of 10 days not above 10 degrees as a high.

If the problem was a frozen gas line, starting fluid would have let the vehicle start and run briefly. If it won’t start you lack fuel, spark, compression, timing or enough cranking speed. Since starting fluid supplied fuel and compression and timing would not have healed themselves, you lacked spark or cranking speed.

Cranks but won’t start is usually either a spark or fuel system problem. Next time this happens, before replacing any parts, check for a healthy spark at a spark plug. Use a known good spark plug for that test. If you are getting no spark then, you’ll know replacing the spark plugs isn’t going to help. I’m guessing your current problem is that the starter motor has been damaged by repeated cranking. The voltage test at the starter terminals mentioned above is where to start, but I’m seeing a replacement starter motor in your future.

With the key in “start” both terminals should measure 10.5 volts or more. Measure between the terminal and the starter case. If they do, and it won’t crank the engine, the starter should be replaced. Be sure to check the flywheel teeth for any problems when the starter is removed too.

I haven’t seen frozen gas line since I got a garage.