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Posted (edited)

Gents,

I know squat about vehicles except how to drive them and that gas is required.  Can anyone tell me what this problem likely is?  I tried jumping the battery from a portable pack and from a friend's vehicle with cables.  No dice.  It's currently in my apartment garage so if I need to get it to the shop, that's gonna be fun.

 

 

Edited by btq96r
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Posted (edited)

Do you drive it every day, and this just happened?

If so, my first guess would be your battery has died, and/or your alternator has gone bad and is no longer charging the battery as you drive it. The last time you drove it discharged the battery too low for it to handle the load of another start.  Advance or Auto Zone will test both for you free.

Edit: if you try to jump a low battery in your car from another vehicle, let the 'jumping vehicle' run for a while while connected before starting. Sometimes it takes a hot minute or 10.

Edited by superduty
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9 minutes ago, superduty said:

Do you drive it every day, and this just happened?

If so, my first guess would be your battery has died, and/or your alternator has gone bad and is no longer charging the battery as you drive it. The last time you drove it discharged the battery too low for it to handle the load of another start.  Advance or Auto Zone will test both for you free.

Went the weekend without driving it.  Tried to head to the office Monday afternoon and realized it wasn't starting. 

Guessing Advance or Auto Zone need me to get the truck to them for the test?

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Yeah, you'll need to get it to them. See my edit above.  You can test the battery yourself if you happen to have and know how to use a voltmeter. 

Letting the car sit for a few days shouldn't have killed it.  Ten bucks says you have a bad battery or alternator (perhaps both).

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  • Admin Team

That’s likely a battery that’s just too low to hold a charge - maybe with a bad cell that’s “diluting” the ability of the portable pack to start it.

You could pull the battery cables and hook them up directly to the jumper cables.  If it starts - easy fix. 

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Posted (edited)

Another option is to yank the battery and have your buddy run you to the Autozone and have it tested/buy a new one. Then afterwards run back by to get your alternator checked. 
 

But I’m gonna guess it’s the battery, especially if you don’t remember the last time you got one or if it’s the OEM and you’ve had the vehicle more than a few years. 

Edited by Chucktshoes
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If its like my Fords and its a weak or dead battery, "boosting" it or replacing the battery could activate the antitheft. If that occurs it could no longer recognize the pats key.If this is the case and depending on the year model you'll need someone with a scan tool or the dealer to reprogram the key to the pc. You can see the theft blink red in your video and it appeared to blink out of sequence to the other lights as you began to engage the starter, or attempt to. 

This is of course a WAG but I've owned Fords for decades and detest the invention of the PATS key 🤬. My .02

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I agree with others and would test/replace the battery. Also check the battery terminals and make sure they are tight and not loose or broken. A terminal clamp that can be moved will give you problems

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Thanks for the input everyone.  Since I can't even remember when the current battery was put in, I'm going to get it changed out.  Have a mobile appointment coming tomorrow for that.

I'm about due for an oil change and an AC recharge, so I'll also ask them to check out the terminal clamps as well.

Appreciate everyone helping out a guy who's an idiot when it comes to all things under the hood.

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It’s obviously turning the engine over, but it does sound slow. I’d take the battery to the parts house and have it checked. My or may not be your problem.

You don’t have a mouse or squirrel problem by chance, do you? Those little turds have given me fits lately by chewing wire, fuel lines, and the like. I think I’ve thinned them out for the time being.

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8 hours ago, JackalopeRider said:

Did you get it fixed? 

Not yet.  Still trying to peg down a mobile battery replacement service (Firestone's vehicle is too large to clear the entry for the garage.  If I can't find one, I'll ask a friend to give me a lift to AutoZone, get what I need, and figure out how to swap it myself.

 

4 hours ago, gregintenn said:

It’s obviously turning the engine over, but it does sound slow. I’d take the battery to the parts house and have it checked. My or may not be your problem.

You don’t have a mouse or squirrel problem by chance, do you? Those little turds have given me fits lately by chewing wire, fuel lines, and the like. I think I’ve thinned them out for the time being.

No critters in play.  I'm in a pretty urban area where my apartment building is literally the block.  Never seen anything with four legs aside from a dog on a leash in the garage.

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Posted (edited)

Mechanic here.

*Please note, internet diagnostics are next to impossible, that said...

 

Battery is stone dead. Replace it.

If it starts, look for a battery warning light after start  (indicating a charging system problem i.e. alternator)

If no warning lights and multiple start/stops prove okay.. Likely end of the problem.

 

Could have a starter issue (but from the sounds of it nah). But Id bet it ends with a battery.

 

Car battery's are 12VDC, but they actually produce 12.8VDC, most battery's will start to show fatigue near 12.6VDC

 

615-578-1767 text if you have a question.

-Mike

Edited by 1fast4by
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, btq96r said:

Not yet.  Still trying to peg down a mobile battery replacement service (Firestone's vehicle is too large to clear the entry for the garage.  If I can't find one, I'll ask a friend to give me a lift to AutoZone, get what I need, and figure out how to swap it myself.

 

No critters in play.  I'm in a pretty urban area where my apartment building is literally the block.  Never seen anything with four legs aside from a dog on a leash in the garage.

Take the old battery with you if you can. They will charge you a core charge for the new one if you don’t leave an old battery with them.

If you can’t take the old battery with you just save the receipt. They will refund the core charge later when you take the old battery in 

Edited by Wingshooter
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Posted (edited)

I'm set....and have a great story to share. 

https://nashvillemobilemechanic.co/

The guy who runs this service (one man shop) was able to come directly to my location, get in my garage, because his service vehicle is a Ford Ranger kitted out as a mobile toolbox.  Where AAA and Firestone couldn't meet the clearance of my garage, this guy saved the day (or at least kept me from pushing the vehicle with someone steering it in neutral out into the street).  Super friendly, and was able to swap in a new battery for me no problem.  I 'm happy to put money from my pocket into his business account for the services rendered, and glad I found him.

I love this kind of entrepreneurial spirit in striking out solo and putting in the work with his own two hands.  Says he's staying pretty busy, which I can see in a booming Nashville Metro Area.  Despite all my feelings of woe about the economy at large, I think this guy will stay in good shape come what may.

Truck is humming along.  He said the alternator and everything else he looked at while changing the battery are good to go.  Time to get back to work.  Thanks again to all for the knowledge you shared.

Edited by btq96r
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I’m hopefully average at best regarding mechanic skills/knowledge. I’ve done some repairs over the years many people wouldn’t but at the same time many potential repairs daunt me. 
 

That said, I recommend everyone stick one of these in their vehicles. I have one in each of ours. 
 

Fixd

These are great. It’s on par with any other ODBII scammer I imagine but it is Bluetooth. I can scan my battery from within my house (as long as I’m close enough to the vehicle of course). You can take battery voltage and then compare it to the voltage after you start the vehicle. This will tell you if your alternator is charging. 
 

This is more of a long term plan, there are of course much faster ways to diagnose your short term problem. 
 

Fixd will also help you keep up on maintenance. 

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