How to Start a Car in Cold Weather

by Contributor

Cold weather can make your car difficult or impossible to start. Taking some preventative measures can keep your car ready to roll at any time. When temperatures drop, follow these steps to help you start a car in cold weather.

Park your car inside a garage or under a carport, if possible. Keeping your car under cover can lessen the effects of snow and extreme temperatures on your car.

Put the key in the ignition, and try to start the car. If it doesn't start within 5 seconds, stop and wait a minute before trying it again. If you car is not fuel-injected, you should pump the gas once or twice before turning the key.

Make sure your car's battery is new and full of power. An old, weak battery doesn't have the power needed to start a car in freezing weather.

Apply heat to the engine bay of the car. Use a circulator heater designed for warming engine bays. This will heat up the fluids in the engine and make the car easier to start.

Allow the car to sit in the Park or Neutral position after starting. The oil needs time to warm up and thin before you drive. Starting the car and driving off immediately can damage the engine.


  • close Don't start your car in an enclosed area and allow it to warm up. The fumes from the exhaust are dangerous and can be fatal if inhaled over a period of time.

About the Author

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us.

More Articles