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Unread 07-26-2013, 12:32 AM   #1
zRoxxah
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Helping a Neighbor

I was working on my Jeep and my neighbor came over and asked for a little advice on his car.

I don't know the model other than it's a 95 Buick but I feel like this case has a pretty generic fix. Basically his car won't hold a charge. You can jump it, and drive to point B but good luck getting back without a jump.

This is what he's told me so far
-Had battery tested twice, its fine
-New alternator
-New starter
-New ECU

But it still won't hold a charge. I apologize for lack of info and won't be surprised if I don't get any biters. But what should be checked next? I've never wrenched on a Buick before.

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Unread 07-26-2013, 05:25 AM   #2
jeepdaddy2000
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Checking that charging system is no different than any others.

Do a search (or have him do one) and run the troubleshooting steps to find the problem.
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Unread 07-26-2013, 07:45 AM   #3
AKABOB
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zRoxxah View Post
I was working on my Jeep and my neighbor came over and asked for a little advice on his car.

I don't know the model other than it's a 95 Buick but I feel like this case has a pretty generic fix. Basically his car won't hold a charge. You can jump it, and drive to point B but good luck getting back without a jump.

This is what he's told me so far
-Had battery tested twice, its fine
-New alternator
-New starter
-New ECU

But it still won't hold a charge. I apologize for lack of info and won't be surprised if I don't get any biters. But what should be checked next? I've never wrenched on a Buick before.
had the same problem in the jeep this summer. Turned out to be a short in the amp for the subwoofer in the console. Cut the amp off, everything is fine now.

I am not saying the radio is doing it, but you have a short somewhere in the electrical. Luckily on a Jeep there aint much to look for, but I would guess that is your problem.
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Unread 07-26-2013, 08:58 AM   #4
jbolty
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If the battery is actually good and the alternator is charging then I would be looking for a draw. Try taking the fuses out 1 or maybe 5 at a time and find out where the power is going. Before that, look for any leads around the battery or starter that might be rubbed through.
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Unread 07-26-2013, 10:35 AM   #5
Indy
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It would have to be a pretty substantial draw if the battery goes dead as soon as the car turns off. If it goes dead over a few days... sure. Even a winch will run for quite a while on a good battery with the engine off.

General rule of thumb is if the battery car dies while driving its the charging system, if it runs but won't restart its the battery. I've had 3 different shops give me 3 different answers testing alts and batteries. I know I had a battery that had dropped a cell that tested fine at autozone.

Get a new battery from walmart, if it doesn't fix the problem take it back. After that it's time to break out the multimeter and see how much total draw he's seeing with the motor off. The clock etc on the radio should be very minimal current pull. Anything noticeable, pull 1 fuse at a time until the draw dies and you've ID'd your problem circuit.
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Unread 08-01-2013, 08:53 AM   #6
CherokeeHybrid
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Try swapping a known good battery from a different vehicle. Autozone and Advance could test a tin can and probably tell you it has a charge. I brought back a battery with a bad cell and the guy told me to charge it with jumper cables from another car before trying to start it.
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Unread 08-01-2013, 09:43 AM   #7
vcallen7
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Originally Posted by CherokeeHybrid View Post
Try swapping a known good battery from a different vehicle. Autozone and Advance could test a tin can and probably tell you it has a charge. I brought back a battery with a bad cell and the guy told me to charge it with jumper cables from another car before trying to start it.
Completely agree. I've gone to autozone to buy a new battery. For some reason they always insist on checking your old one. But they said it was good when clearly it wasn't as I had to jump it off EVERY time. Put the new battery in and haven't had any trouble. Those autozone guys don't know what they are talking about.
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Unread 08-01-2013, 09:49 AM   #8
bobjp
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I say it's the battery or the connections to the battery. These are the only 2 things that a jump will fix.

A draw will take a long time to kill the battery, and if the charging system weren't working the car would eventually die.
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Unread 08-01-2013, 10:40 AM   #9
vadslram
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Disconnect the battery and put a meter between the connections if you have more than microamps flowing with the key off there is a major short somewhere.
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