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Discussion Starter #1
I walked out this morning and heard the dreaded 'click' when I turned the key. Battery was dead. I got a jump from my wife's car and drove to work (30 min drive) On the highway, my radio kept cutting out and the lights for ABS, airbag, etc. would flicker on anf off every 30 seconds or so. When I got to work and turn the car off it would not re-start

Is this likely a problem with the battery? Alternator? Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks.

-J
 

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newer cars like ours have to have a stable battery voltage even for the alternator to run things properly while the car is running and it is supposed to be charging the battery back up and supplying power to the electrical components in the car. My bet is also on the battery, and it is the cheaper of the two options to replace anyway. have someone check your battery and go to walmart and get one of their "gold" batteries. they are made by johnson controls, the same people that make the sears diehard batteries. this was told to me by a buddy that has worked at sears for over a decade. great battery and alot cheaper.
 

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Yup...sounds like a typical bad battery. Especially if it is the orig one....4years is typical too.
 

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I'd get both checked.

How long is your commute? Was your "battery" light on at all? Any problems with the car stalling or running rough on your drive?
If you go to a Wal-Mart with a Tire/Lube express, they will be able to check your battery and starting/charging voltages for free. Be sure to let them know you want the charging system also checked. It is NOT normal for MIL's and cutting out radios during vehicle operation, even with a dead battery. Your alternator should take over the battery duties AFTER the car starts, and should also supply around 14.5VDC in order to charge the battery after it's start.

Check the tightness and cleanliness of your terminals as well.

Wal-Mart's good batteries are the MAXX batteries (and they're Black now!)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Battery replaced

in the 104 degree Austin heat. Problem solved. Believe it or not, this is the fourth car I've owned and the first battery I've ever had to replace. I've done starters, radiators, and a new hood, but I've never had a battery that wouldn't hold a charge.

I'm glad I found these forums. It's a great resource.

Thanks for the help.

Next up: replace cabin air filter and passenger side mirror
 

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Glad that worked for you. It is common misconception that you dont need the battery after the car is started. There is an input or voltage sensing on almost every car alternator in the past 10 or more years. If it doesnt see a good battery (or any battery) all kinds of wierd things can happen. The battery is the largest capacitor in the vehicle's electrical system and it also filters any A/C ripple from the system that the diodes in the alternator let by.
 

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Glad that worked for you. It is common misconception that you dont need the battery after the car is started. There is an input or voltage sensing on almost every car alternator in the past 10 or more years. If it doesnt see a good battery (or any battery) all kinds of wierd things can happen. The battery is the largest capacitor in the vehicle's electrical system and it also filters any A/C ripple from the system that the diodes in the alternator let by.
This is also true.

For the record...DO NOT CHECK ALTERNATOR FUNCTION BY DISCONNECTING THE NEGATIVE BATTERY CABLE. :-x Some people.
 

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This is also true.

For the record...DO NOT CHECK ALTERNATOR FUNCTION BY DISCONNECTING THE NEGATIVE BATTERY CABLE. :-x Some people.
Maybe, solar panels would work also? Saves fuel.
 

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Glad that worked for you. It is common misconception that you dont need the battery after the car is started. There is an input or voltage sensing on almost every car alternator in the past 10 or more years. If it doesnt see a good battery (or any battery) all kinds of wierd things can happen. The battery is the largest capacitor in the vehicle's electrical system and it also filters any A/C ripple from the system that the diodes in the alternator let by.
That is exactly the point I was about to make...thanks.:D
 

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Similar Problem-after new battery

My '05 has had trouble starting in a variety of conditions-are numerous short trips (hot) or first thing in the morning. Had it to the dealer several times and they eventually replaced the battery. The car sits for prolong periods (I worked in the Middle East) but it ran fine over the Christmas holiday in 08 but my wife is experiening the same problem now. She could not even get the thing to start with jumpers.

Is anyone aware of a problem with the electrical system that would affect the proper charging of the battery or could this be an ignition problem?
 
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