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Car won't start. Low oil

My cars oil light came on as I was exiting highway, started making ticking sound and got louder and also made a clunk sound. Parked car at store, turned back on car still ticking and sounded very very weak.I moved it to a different spot and it is sitting there. I believe this is because of low oil but not sure. If I add oil should it solve problem? I am 2 months passed due on oil and also have a small leak. I have a 2000 vw jetta, manual transmission. Please help!

I guess the first step is have someone show you how to check your oil level which should be done on a weekly basis at least. If low fill to full mark. If noise still present you may have damaged the engine.

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Sounds like this that suddenly develop as a result of low oil (read: owner neglect) are not the same as sounds that develop gradually over the years. They’re much more ominous. The chances of adding oil at this stage solving the problem are pretty remote. You might have spun a bearing. Until the cause of the noises is diagnosed, I’d recommend not driving it.

Hopefully you’ll learn from this experience the importance of checking your fluids regularly and servicing them as scheduled. It’s one heck of a lot less costly than not doing so. And a lot less inconvenient too.

Post once you’ve found out the source of the noises. We do care.

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Oil light on with engine noise doesn’t bode well.

And if the engine doesn’t start now, it usually means the engine is seized.



+1 to tester’s post.
In my response I missed that “won’t start” comment in the title. perhaps my brain just chose to ignore it, but tester’s absolutely right.

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If you had shut off the engine and checked the oil level when the oil light came on, you may have saved yourself a bunch of money.
By continuing to drive and ignoring the ticking which grew into a clunk, you fried your engine I presume.

Time to plan on forking out $2000 + to have someone put a used engine in this car.
As @the_same_mountainbik pointed out "Owner neglect"
The small leak may have developed into a gusher as quick flash . This is where you should have been checking the oil every day to monitor the leak.


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Driving 2000 miles past an oil change is not a big problem. Driving until the oil pressure light comes on because there is no oil in your engine anymore is a big problem. Continuing to drive makes it worse. At the first flicker of the oil pressure light you should shut off your engine , coast to the side of the road, and check your oil.
How can you know you have an oil leak and not check your oil? It should be a monthly check if your car doesn’t use any oil, more often if needed, you should never let your oil get below the add mark on your dipstick.

OH, yes, your engine is now a doorstop.