What Causes Jeep Wrangler Red Light On Dash & Won’t Start?

If the red security light remains on but the engine does not start, it clearly indicates that the system is going through some major malfunctions. Either it may relate to low fuel, a dead battery or the starter motor being damaged. 

Whatever the reason is, start troubleshooting by checking if there is enough gas in the jeep. Plus ensure the battery cable is tight and the terminals are clean. If all these fail to prove well, you need to concentrate on the internal mechanical problems. At times, only jumpstarting the jeep does the trick.

If still, the problem persists, it is a call for a complete solving guide. Read through our comprehensive guide highlighting all the effective solutions for the Jeep wrangler red light on dash won’t start an issue.

Why Does Jeep Wrangler Won’t Start But Red Light On Dashboard?

When you are in your jeep, nothing can be more annoying than the red security indicator is solid on but the engine is not starting. 

As mentioned above, there are several factors responsible for why your jeep wrangler is refusing to start. Some of the root causes for this issue include:

  • Insufficient fuel amount
  • Corroded battery terminal 
  • Weak or dead battery
  • Bad spark plugs, fuel pump or ignition switch
  • Improper wiring connection to the starter motor
  • Faulty ground connection
  • Fuse issue on the fuse panel
  • Faulty immobilizer 
  • Defective starter motor

Read Also: Jeep Wrangler Won’t Start But Battery Is Good? (6 Easy Fix)

9 Easy Solutions For Jeep Wrangler Red Light On Dash Won’t Start

Dealing with your Jeep Wrangler starting issue won’t seem tough as long as you are following our below step-by-step instructions to a T. Let’s start:

#1- Check Fuel Amount 

Nothing new to mention that fuel is always essential for your jeep either to start or to function properly. So, if there is a lack of fuel in your Jeep Wrangler, it won’t be possible for the jeep to turn on. 

Chances are that you miss out on filling up your engine and struggle with the problem of not starting up while even the red light is on. 

So, ultimately the first solution is to check the fuel amount in your Jeep. If the fuel is insufficient in the jeep, fuel it up. After fueling, try to start your Wrangler & see if the matter is only relatable to the fuel or not.

#2- Replace The Dead Battery

The battery of your Jeep Wrangler is a vital component to start it up. At the time when you’re experiencing the annoying issue where the jeep is showing a red light but can’t start up, the possibility can be that the battery is dead. The outcome of the dead battery is not starting up when you turn the key over and over.

In this case, you can first attempt a jump start or charge the battery. If you find the battery loses its charge too quickly or it becomes too weak, replace the dead one. The replacement will cost you about $257 to $266.

Read Also: Jeep Shut Off While Driving And Won’t Start: Main Reasons And Solutions

#3- Clean The Battery Terminals

Battery terminals are another thing to consider. These terminals are engaged to ensure the battery power flow to the electrical system of your Jeep. When the terminals are dirty, the flow is interrupted resulting in the jeep not starting keeping the red light on the dashboard.  

Here are the steps to investigate & cleaning the corroded battery terminals.

  • Step 1: Lift over the covers of your battery terminals.
  • Step 2: If the terminal is dirty or corroded, use baking soda, hot water & brush/cloth to clean the terminals. Ensure not to pour water on the top of the battery.
  • Step 3: If a thorough cleaning is needed, remove the batteries, and clean the corroded terminals with sandpaper. Once done, put back everything in reverse order. 

#4- Check & Replace the Bad Fuel Pump, Spark Plugs or Ignition

In your Jeep Wrangler, tiresome can be that there is enough fuel, but still, the jeep can’t start up. 

It only happens when the fuel pump goes bad and the engine can’t get the fuel to function well. Check the fuel pump & if it has gone bad, replacing is an obvious solution. 

Outside of it, if there is no problem with the fuel pump, the spark plug can relate to the matter. Spark plugs ignite the fuel in the engine and power up your car. 

Due to a bad spark plug, the jeep makes you face the matter. So, replace the damaged one to resolve the Jeep Wrangler red light on dash but won’t start. 

#5- Change Defective Immobilizer 

An immobilizer is a security system that is designed to prevent theft of your Jeep. But when the immobilizer is defective, it prevents your Jeep Wrangler from starting, red light on the dashboard.  

Sometimes you see, you put the correct key into the ignition, but still, the immobilizer says it can’t recognise it. It’s a sign that the immobilizer is faulty. 

So, to settle down the faulty immobilizer, you need to reset the immobilizer by dealership. 

#6- Reset 4, 7 & 8 Fuse on The Fuse Panel Box

An effective method to sort out the matter of the red light on but the Jeep Wrangler won’t start is to reset 4, 7 & 8 fuses on the fuse panel box. 

The reset process of the fuses is very simple & a pretty quick fix. So, let’s try it on. Follow the below steps to reset the 4, 7 & 8 fuses

  • Take out your key from the ignition and open your Jeep.
  • Took off your fuse panel box.
  • Locate the 4, 7 & 8 fuses on the panel box. The 4-number fuse is on the right  whereas the 7 & 8 number fuses are on the top left.
  • Now take out these fuses for 30 seconds.
  • After that time pop that backs in. That’s it! Now see if this easy fix can work out for you or not.

Read Also: What Causes Jeep Wrangler Seat Won’t Recline? (Fix Now)

#7- Jump Start the Jeep Wrangler

When your jeep can’t start up due to a loss of battery charge, jump start can be a useful method. In this process, you connect the Wrangler battery to the other healthy battery of another car to rule out the dead one. Attempt the below steps for a jump start on your Jeep Wrangler.

  • Keep the engine off of both vehicles.
  • First, connect the red cable to the positive side of the Wrangler’s dead battery.
  • Attach the other end of the red cable to the doner battery’s positive side and the black cable to the negative terminal.
  • At the last point, connect the other end of the black cable to any bare part of the body or the engine of your Wrangler.

Warning: Attaching the black cable directly to the negative terminal of the Wrangler may ignite flammable gasses. So be careful of it.

  • Now start your Jeep Wrangler.
  • After finishing, remove the cables in the reverse way. 

#8- Replace The Faulty Starter Motor

The starter motor is the other possible reason that can make your jeep not start up even when the red light is on. An inspection of the motor may be needed now to see if it’s the reason behind the issue. Follow the below steps to check the motor.

  • Step 1: Check the starter motor. There you can find a little wire that should have 12V when you turn on the ignition.
  • Step 2: If the 12V is missing there, check this wire for a damaged or corroded connection. If the wire is faulty, it needs to be replaced.
  • Step 3: Check for the resistance between the main positive lead that goes to the motor. Attempt jump starts your jeep. 

In case it can’t work out, missing voltage and the immobilizer is fine, then the starter motor faulty. Your jeep may require a new starter motor now. 

#9- Inspect The Ground Connections

The very last possible reason for experiencing the not start up, red light problem of your jeep is the ground connections. 

Due to corrosion or rust on the ground connections, it may go bad. So, the way to resolve it is to inspect the ground connection. To do so,

  • Check the quality of the ground connections by the conductivity test.
  • In case of the conductivity test failure, check the ground connections of the Wrangler whether they are in good condition or not.
  • Also, look through the connectors of the ground cable for any corrosion. If it’s corroded, clean that out with sandpaper.

Read Also: Why Jeep Wrangler Seat Warmer Won’t Stay On?(Causes & Fix)


Regarding the Jeep Wrangler won’t start matter, many more queries arise that are frequently searched. We’re going to highlight some important ones.

Why Jeep Wrangler won’t turn over but the battery is good?

When the battery is good, but still your Jeep Wrangler won’t turn over, you should check the connections of your battery cables. If the jeep faces a lot of roading, cables may become loose causing the jeep not to turn over. 

What does a red light mean on a Jeep Wrangler?

The red light on jeeps is known as telltale lights. Whenever the red light is on in the Jeep Wrangler, it’s the clear indication that the jeep is experiencing some serious issue. 

What would cause a Jeep Wrangler not to start but has power?

There are many factors that can relate to it. Such as a dead battery, starter problem or ignition issue. Check the batteries first to see whether it is charged or replaced. 


Obviously, experiencing the Jeep wrangler red light on the dash won’t start is an annoying matter that has made you confused enough to sort out. Expectantly, through our article, you have settled down the matter without any further hassle. 

Wherever or whenever you face the problem, always try out the easiest fixes like checking the batteries or jump start. If the problem becomes outreach, visiting the mechanics is always advisable.

Read Also: Why Is My Jeep Wrangler Gas Cap Light On?(Causes & Fixes)

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