Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start?

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If you want to associate luxury and royalty with an SUV, GMC Yukon needs to be one of the top contenders that come to your mind.

A versatile SUV provides a total premium offering to its customers in terms of comfort, style, and control.

The Denali-Exclusive interior of these cars and an engine that is so powerful that it almost leaves you star-struck.

When all is said and done about how praise-worthy GMC Yukon is, there will be times when you will find yourself asking different people questions such as, “Why won’t my GMC Yukon start?”.

This question has been asked by many people up till now, which only gives me one more reason to discuss every possible cause in full detail.

  1. Damaged Ignition Switch
  2. Oxidized Wires And Cables
  3. Disrupted Oil Filter
  4. Replacement Of Components With Cheaper Alternatives
  5. Locked Steering Wheel

These five main points of origin must be tackled carefully if you want your car to perform as you would like it to, or it will keep failing.

What Would Cause A GMC Yukon To Not Start?

If your GMC Yukon starts then dies, then there are some issues. Learn what those are through my guide

GMC Yukon is quite praise-worthy and deserves to be applauded.

However, like every other car, this one also has some serious issues.

One has to be extremely cautious while checking for these issues because GMC Yukon is not a cheap car to maintain.

Every component that requires fixing would generate a hefty amount of bills.

For your ease, I have discussed all the frequent problems that might stop your SUV from working efficiently. These have been elaborated on down below.

1: Damaged Ignition Switch

The ignition switch is attached to the steering column and is located behind the ignition cylinder. Almost all of your vehicle’s electrical systems are activated by this component.

When the switch malfunctions, you’ll probably discover several issues that would need immediate attention.

Blinking interior lights to more severe problems like your GMC Yukon not starting are all examples of ignition switch issues.

The starter motor and ignition system won’t receive power from a damaged ignition switch, making it nearly impossible for the engine to start.

A damaged ignition switch could occasionally still work to start your car.

The fuel and ignition systems might only receive a brief current from the switch. This may lead to your car stalling sooner or later.

Another sign of a bad ignition switch is a jammed key, which could keep the system running even after it’s been replaced.

In addition to ignition switch problems, worn-out ignition contacts that are more heat sensitive may make it difficult for you to restart your car.

What Should You Do About It?

  • It would take around $90 to get a new ignition switch and around $100 for labor if you cannot fix it yourself.
  • It is advised to consult a mechanic rather than do it on your own if you do not have the right set of skills.
  • This is because many components and car accessories are linked with the ignition switch, which might get disabled.
  • If you have a duplicate key for your GMC Yukon, it is about time you use it for your car, as that might suit it more.

2: Oxidized Wires And Cables

Although battery cables operate straightforwardly, they might interfere with the electrical system when they fail.

Everything in your automobile, including the AC system, lights, surveillance systems, and onboard computers, is powered by the electrical system.

You cannot start your GMC Yukon if power is not getting into the electrical system.

Your vehicle will stall if the battery cable is damaged or corrupted since there would not be enough voltage flowing to the ignition system.

The automobile would not start due to low crank power. Corroded terminal ends also impact the passage of charge from the battery to your car’s electrical system.

One important part of the vehicle’s electrical system is the starter.

Your GMC Yukon would not start when no ignition or electricity is provided to the starter through the wires, which is unfortunate news.

The first indication that there is a problem is that whenever you try to start your SUV and takes way too long to crank or turn over the engine.

This cranking alone should tell you about the oxidization of your car’s wires.

What Should You Do About It?

  • Check the battery terminals as well as the battery cables. This is the point of contact and is easily affected by corrosion.
  • Do not drive on salted roads during cold weather as salt might bring rust to your car.
  • Corrosion might be because of the battery acid as well. Use a battery greaser to prevent this from happening.

3: Disrupted Oil Filter

The oil filter removes pollutants from the oil before allowing it to circulate through the engine’s working components to reduce friction and collect heat.

The components will undergo damage, and your engine will screech if the oil filter is not supplying the needed motor oil into the engine.

Sputtering becomes more noticeable as you accelerate, and this issue should not be overlooked because sputters cause problems for the vehicle.

Eventually, a jammed oil filter can impact your GMC Yukon’s exhaust. Except for a little white smoke whenever it’s cold outside, you shouldn’t see any smoke from your tailpipe.

When you see brown or black smoke from the exhaust pipe, your SUV may be burning combustion byproducts.

The oil is something that an engine requires for operating efficiently, if that is disrupted, the engine’s performance would be tampered and it would eventually stop working.

What Should You Do About It?

  • It is wise to replace your oil filters when you have crossed the 3000 miles mark with your GMC Yukon.
  • Make sure the quality of oil that you use for your vehicle is of supreme quality that matches its set standards.
  • Use an aerosol cleaner to eliminate the pollutants in your oil filter if you are doing it at home.

4: Replacement Of Components With Cheaper Alternatives

Finding the components of this car is not easy. GMC Yukon, as discussed previously, is a car that is an amalgamation of high-quality components and features.

If you can afford to buy an expensive SUV like GMC Yukon, you must not compromise on the quality of service and maintenance you provide.

You can easily get scammed by many people in the market who claim to have high-quality authentic GMC Yukon spare products, but they would just be trying to scam you.

This issue is becoming so serious as more and more replicas are coming into the market that it has become difficult to separate an actual product from its first copy.

You might do it willingly just to save some extra dollars but trust me, in the long run, that spare product or component would not settle in your car’s favor, and your SUV would stop working.

You would then have to pay more than you originally would have.

What Should You Do About It?

  • Try to make sure that you purchase the spare products from their authorized outlets and do not fall into the trap of scammers.
  • Make sure that you take your GMC Yukon on its routine maintenance schedule. This would lessen the chances of the replacement of products.
  • If you do not have the budget to buy original products, buy a refurbished component, but it must be original and not a third-class copy.

5: Locked Steering Wheel

This is another major factor you need to consider if your car is not working. No matter how much you twist and turn the key of your GMC Yukon, it will not work.

If a locked steering wheel is stuck, your ignition switch (or the push button in new cars) would also fail to work. This is mainly done to stay safe.

In most cases, it has nothing to do with the internal components of your car, such as the alternator, battery, or even the starter.

It has everything to do with trying to keep its users safe. If your car’s wheels are moved a little while your car is off, the steering will lock automatically.

GMC Yukon is worth a lot of money, and several cases of robbery of this car have also been reported.

However, a locked steering wheel can be fixed easily, considering how much GMC Yukon has adapted to new technology. This is introduced to prevent theft.

What Should You Do About It?

  • From one hand, move the steering wheel left and right. On the other hand, insert the key in the ignition switch and try to turn the car on.
  • Spraying a lubricant can also ease any blockage that might have taken place near the steering wheel.
  • Turn off your car and keep moving the steering wheel. Stop and start the car immediately when you hear a clicking sound.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start With New Battery?

You must ensure that the new battery is suitable for your GMC Yukon.

Do not purchase a third-quality battery for your car to save a few more dollars.

GMC Yukon is to be associated with premium quality products even if it is the car’s battery we are talking about.

Lastly, make sure the new battery is properly charged.

Q2. Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start Even With A Jump?

If you have given your GMC Yukon a jumpstart, you might have thought that the car’s battery is dead.

However, if your car did not start, you know that is not the case. It could be anything else, such as clogged filters, damaged sensors, or tank leakages.

Q3. Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start But Lights Work?

The lights of your GMC Yukon and every other car directly indicate how well your internal electrical system is.

If your lights are working, but a car is not, your electrical system is working efficiently. Instead, the issue can be the car’s battery or alternator.

Q4. Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start But Cranks?

If you hear the cranking sound, do not spare another moment to buy a voltmeter.

This would tell you that your GMC Yukon’s battery is not receiving nor sending enough power to the car’s engine, which is leading to the cranking sound.

Q5. Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start Just Clicks?

Clicks might be heard if the car’s battery is not to be blamed in case your GMC is not working.

The clicking sound indicates that the car is to be taken to a mechanic and later to an electrician.

Only they can check the components affecting the engine’s performance except for the car’s battery.

Q6. Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start In The Cold Weather?

During cold weather, roads are salted, bringing rust to a GMC Yukon’s internal components.

Moisture gets trapped under the car’s hood and makes its way inside. Moreover, rodents make things worse by blowing fuses and munching on the wires.

Q7. Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start After I Get Gas?

There are two possibilities in this case. The first is leakages in your fuel filter, which you need to sort out.

The second possibility is that the engine of your GMC Yukon is eating up more gas than it originally does. This means that some parts of the car require more power to run.

Q8. Why Won’t My GMC Yukon Start But Radio Works?

If your radio has started to work, the internal electrical system is working just fine, but the ignition system is to be held responsible for not starting the GMC Yukon.

The car’s computer is not provided with all the necessary information to start the car.

Related: What Are The Worst Years For The GMC Yukon?


If a car as luxurious as GMC Yukon can experience trouble and hesitate before it starts, then any car can.

A lot of money is spent on manufacturing this car, and it is also very expensive to maintain.

Due to this, it is best to cater to the issues it brings to the table on your own. I talked about multiple solutions and issues in this article to make this easier for you.

After reading this article, “Why won’t my GMC Yukon start?” would be your last bit of concern because you would know all the nitty-gritty circulating this problem.

Once you implement the solutions, enjoy your smooth, luxurious drive in the GMC Yukon.