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sprinkles08, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Nissan
Satisfied Customers: 22993
Experience:  ASE Master and Advanced level certified. Factory trained with 15 years dealership experience
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My son hit a curb this AM, car was running, he pulled in a

Customer Question

My son hit a curb this AM, car was running, he pulled in a lot and now the car won't start. Just a single click when you press the start button
JA: Where exactly do you think the noise is coming from? And how long has this been going on?
Customer: just a single click, like a dead battery, i jumped it and no change. all the lights and electric work so I don't think battery is issue. Is there a cut-off switch?
JA: What is the model/year of your Nissan?
Customer: 2008 altima
JA: Are you hoping to fix this yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: yes
JA: Anything else you think the mechanic should know?
Customer: that is the whole story
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Nissan
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer!

A single click from the engine compartment when attempting to start the engine is usually caused by a bad starter but it could also be a cable or connection issue or possibly internal engine damage. If it was running fine when shut off then there shouldn't be an engine issue but if the oil pan was damaged when the curb was hit and it ran out of oil that would explain the engine not cranking.

Have you tried turning the engine by hand with a socket on the crank damper bolt?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No I have not. The car ran fine for about a mile then was turned off. Once he came back, about 5 mins later the car would not start.
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 1 year ago.

Are you wanting to try to diagnose and repair the problem yourself?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
is there a emergency cut off switch?
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 1 year ago.

An inertia switch to remove power from the fuel pump which is used on Ford products? No, that isn't used on your vehicle and wouldn't prevent starter engagement.

Can you see if the engine is physically able to turn?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am very sorry! I had some other issues arise and it took me a bit to get back to the Altima. I was able to physically turn the motor so it is not seized. What are the chances it is a starter motor?
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 1 year ago.

The starter itself is a likely cause for this. Are you able to do electrical testing?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have a volt meter, not sure how hard the starter is to reach. What do I need to do?
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 1 year ago.

The first thing you'd want to do is test the positive cable at the starter and check for power on the solenoid wire while a helper tries to crank the engine.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I got to the starter. I get a reading of 10.8 volts at the solenoid side when the START button is pressed. That is a indicator the starter is bad and needs to be replaced?
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 1 year ago.

What is the voltage across the battery posts at rest and after two minutes with the headlamps on?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I see 13v. To be fair, the battery was DEAD today so I was jumping the car when I checked the voltage.
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 1 year ago.

The battery needs to be charged and load tested before attempting any testing.