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Go Back   REVscene Automotive Forum > Technical Discussion > Maintenance, Engine & Driveline Tech

Maintenance, Engine & Driveline Tech This forum is brought to you by The Speed Syndicate (TSS) in Burnaby.
Discussion of maintaining your engine, transmission, differentails, rear ends, and mods associated with "driveline" parts..

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Old 12-23-2009, 11:45 AM   #1
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Replace the battery?

Basically, my 1987 Toyota Cressida's battery has, as far as I know, gone dead. Car will barely turn over even though there is gas in the tank. I'm not sure how long ago the battery was replaced (PM'ed the last owner-he's a member here). If this helps anything, the car has been sitting for about 3 days, but was started nearly everyday before hand (I just went on winter break so I've been sitting at home).

So am I in the market for a new battery, or should I seek a jump and keep starting the car? The question might sound a bit fail, but even though I do know a few things about cars, electrical is something I've never gotten.

Thanks in advance.

EDIT: Got a reply from the previous owner, said it was replaced 2 years ago. I don't think it's quite time for a new one.
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Old 12-23-2009, 12:50 PM   #2
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1. Take battery out of car
2. Charge it overnight with a proper charger
3. Put it back into the car
4. Start it up. Do a load test and alternator test. I think Canadian Tire can do this free.
5. If it fails load testing - get new battery. If alternator test fails, rebuild the alternator.
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Old 12-23-2009, 01:53 PM   #3
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Unfortunately time doesn't exactly relate to battery life. If there's parasitic draw, or the alternator wasn't doing its job, your battery life goes down fast.

On top of that the cold weather in winter really kills batteries especially ones that aren't being taken care of (eg not driving it to let the alternator charge it and im not talking about a drive down the street).

With that being said follow bcrdukes advice. And take it from there.
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Old 12-23-2009, 02:15 PM   #4
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I've seen some batteries last 10 years, some last 6 months.

The length of time has nothing to do with it, has to do with what type of battery and how it is charged.

Like lex said, if there's a constant draw and/or alternator not charging at full capacity and lets say it's a el cheapo no name battery then the odds are it will die sooner. Cold weather is also a big killer of regular cycle car batteries.

I just replaced my factory battery which is about 2.5 years old. If I didn't drive my car a good distance everyday the battery would die by day 2.
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Old 12-23-2009, 02:39 PM   #5
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I'm thinking of picking up an inexpensive 1A trickle charger, to see if that gets things going. If that isn't effective, I'll pick up something a little more powerful.

The battery in there is a Toyota OEM, so it's probably got plenty of life left.
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Old 12-23-2009, 07:59 PM   #6
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Anyone have an opinion on "desuphating" battery chargers? I noticed this lately as an option on some chargers and thinking of buying one.

It's supposed to blow away the crap built up inside the battery. Not sure if it really works though.
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Old 12-23-2009, 09:14 PM   #7
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aaaaaaaaah, so YOU'RE the guy that picked up that cressida that was for sale awhile ago! i wanted it but i was way too late. so much for building a summer cruiser! you could try to recharge the battery and get a load test and charging system test done (someone said that already). i don't know if canadian tire would charge money for that, but if they do you could come to richmond and i'll do it for you! toyota OEM batteries are normally pretty good.
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Old 12-23-2009, 10:00 PM   #8
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I'm trying something that's rather naive: I've taken the battery out of the car and brought it into the house to warm it up. Next morning, I'll put it back in the car to see if it'll start. If it doesn't then I have a buddy coming to help me out, and I'll buy a charger while I'm at it.

Even if "warming" the battery sounds like it'll never work, it's worth a shot. It's kind of like when you have a dead AA battery and if you roll it in your hands, you can get a little more life out of them.
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Old 12-24-2009, 11:29 AM   #9
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with normal use, i find batteries last roughly 5 years or so. If you can get your hands on a descent multimeter, you can check for a draw. Roughly 10-25 mA would be a normal draw
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Old 12-24-2009, 04:03 PM   #10
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Yeah, I think my battery is toast. I might as well buy a new one with Boxing Day coming up. Had a buddy come by to jump start it, barely held the charge one hour.
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Old 12-24-2009, 06:48 PM   #11
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Not necessarily. It could be that the alternator is not charging the battery. Did all the lights on the dash pop up while you were driving?
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Old 12-25-2009, 01:31 PM   #12
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good idea to have the charging system checked too, but it you can jump start it and have it running with headlights, heater blower motor on, without it stalling, and the battery light stays off while driving, then it does sounds like the alternator is taking the electrical load, and charging is most likely ok
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Old 12-25-2009, 03:46 PM   #13
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Well, after getting a second jump before my buddy left my house last night, the battery managed to HOLD that charge overnight, and is running fine, with not battery light on the dash. However, I should REALLY get my battery checked just to be safe, and possibly top up the distilled water in the battery.
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Old 12-30-2009, 03:16 PM   #14
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I have a question, I try to jump start one of my car(left outside since a year ago due to snow), all the lights and radio turns on, but I just cannot start the car, do I have to buy a new battery? I don't think you can charge a dead battery right?
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