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Subcompact Japanese imports have long been untouchable in terms of affordability and practicality they provide, and the Suzuki Swift is no different. For almost 20 years and through three generations, it’s served as a go-to city car for many. Yet, that doesn’t make it faultless. Some owners are familiar with the situation when their Suzuki Swift won’t start, just clicks. We’ll talk more about it further below.
A failure to start Suzuki Swift accompanied by a clicking noise typically means there’s something wrong with the battery or starter. A battery might be low on juice or empty, or the starter might have failed. Furthermore, it could also be the alternator or, in some rare cases, a jammed engine, but the latter is unlikely.
Luckily, if your Suzuki Swift exhibits a clicking sound without starting, chances are you can do the repairs yourself. At the very least, it shouldn’t be anything too expensive, like serious engine problems. Further below, we’ll look at the most common reasons for a clicking noise in a Suzuki Swift that doesn’t even start.
Most Common Problems When Suzuki Swift Won’t Start, Just Clicks
Before moving on to the most common causes of a clicking sound in a Suzuki Swift that doesn’t want to start, let’s take a closer look at the symptoms.
There are different types of clicking sounds that Suzuki Swift emits when it can’t start, and they can also come from various areas inside the engine bay.
Types of sounds are typically:
- multiple rapid clicks
- single click.
They usually come from the bottom of the engine bay where the starter is or from the top of the engine where the starter solenoid can be found.
Let’s now move to the common problems with clicking sounds in a non-starting Suzuki Swift.
Drained or low battery
In case of a drained or dead battery, your Suzuki Swift, naturally, won’t be able to start. Even if the battery still has some juice but is nearly empty, the only thing you’ll get by turning the key is a clicking noise. In case of a battery problem, the noise you’ll get is typically a multitude of rapid clicks.
Whether there’s still some juice left in the battery or it’s completely drained, the voltage won’t be high enough to successfully turn the starter. When the voltage isn’t high enough for the starter solenoid to turn all the way, it instead remains locked in a process of attempting to do so. If the battery is indeed the culprit, the problem can easily be solved by recharging or replacing it.
High resistance due to bad connections, loose cables, or corrosion
When there’s an unnaturally high amount of resistance developed somewhere between the battery and starter, you might get a series of clicking noises instead of a running car. The resistance developing in such a manner will lower the voltage necessary to start the vehicle, essentially replicating the results of a drained battery.
Road vibration might loosen the connection to the battery. If the clamps become loose, simply tightening them should do the trick. Loose or frayed wires can also lead to voltage loss, and you should check these too. The same goes for corroded battery terminals. If the terminals are covered in green-bluish rust, clean them with a wire brush and reconnect the clamps. If that doesn’t sort the issue, your Suzuki Swift’s clicking noise is coming from another source.
If the battery is fine and can hold a charge, but you still experience a clicking sound, you might be dealing with a faulty alternator. When you turn on the key, a portion of the battery’s power is immediately drained on turning up the starter. The alternator is supposed to replenish the battery while the vehicle is running in between starts. Needless to say, if the alternator fails, the battery too will drain rather quickly.
Your best course of action, in this case, is to replace the alternator. It’s not an expensive repair, although it might be time-consuming since reaching the alternator can be tricky and annoying.
A faulty starter typically emits one loud clicking sound. If your Suzuki Swift won’t start, just clicks, then the starter is the most likely culprit. Another possibility is a faulty starter solenoid. The starter solenoid engages the starter, which, in turn, turns the crank and starts the engine. If either of these is faulty, you won’t get past the clicking noise and your car won’t show any signs of life.
Possible issues are numerous and range from frayed wires and corrosion to simply failed units. You can probably replace both the starter solenoid and the starter yourself but bear in mind that the latter is hard to reach in most vehicles, and Suzuki Swift is no different.
Bad battery ground
Bad battery ground is yet another wiring issue that can potentially lead to clicking sounds and failure to turn on the engine. Suzuki Swift has two grounding wires – one connected to the frame and another on the starter motor’s mounting bolt. The latter (main ground wire) can sometimes corrode or break off, in which case, your car will likely emit the dreaded clicking noise.
Replacing or reconnecting the disconnected ground wire isn’t that hard. However, reaching it is a different matter entirely. Also, you might want a certified car electrician on this particular task as one mistake can potentially short your battery and even cause a fire.
The most unlikely scenario where Suzuki Swift won’t start, just clicks, is a case of the seized engine. On rare occasions, the engine can simply lock up and refuse to turn. In such cases, you’ll have to do so manually by turning the harmonic balancer (the lowest crankshaft pulley in the engine) with your hand. Just make sure that the engine can’t possibly start while you’re doing it by removing the key from the ignition.
A frozen engine can also seize, in which case the results could be the same. In such instances, you’d need to defrost the engine gradually and hope that nothing else has broken in the meantime.
As you can see, the problem when the Suzuki Swift won’t start, but only clicks instead, is typically related to the battery or starting system. A battery, a starter solenoid, and a starter motor are three main components around which most clicking noises revolve. Aside from any of these units failing, a clicking sound can also develop if their connections corrode, detach, or otherwise fail. Luckily, most of these problems are easy and cheap to fix.
What does a clicking noise mean when I try to start my car?
A clicking noise when starting a car typically means that you have problems with a battery or your car’s starting system. It might be as benign as a drained battery or more serious like a dead starter or alternator.
How to fix the Suzuki Swift clicking noise?
Fixing the Suzuki Swift clicking noise is typically easy by either recharging or replacing the battery or replacing the starter. However, there are all kinds of possibilities that can complicate things, such as corroded or detached connectors of the mentioned components.
How much does it cost to fix the Suzuki Swift clicking noise?
The cost of fixing a clicking noise in a Suzuki Swift depends on the part that needs replacing. Luckily, all parts that can lead to clicking sounds upon startup can be found for less than $100.
Feel Free to comment below if you have any specific issues. Our team of experts will try our best to help you out!