month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

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Old 04 Jan 2006, 11:32 am   #1 (permalink)
joe54345@gmail.com
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Default month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

I bought a new battery for m '90 Camry a month ago. Yesterday I go to
start it after sitting in freezing temperature for 5 days and nothing -
no lights or anything. I jump start it and it works fine. I drive it
for about 15 minutes and park. This morning I go to start it and the
same thing - nothing. Does the battery need to be recharged or should I
get a new battery. I didn't leave any lights on or anything the first
time, I just assumed it was the cold weather. It was one of those cheap
$29.99 Duralast models from Autozone.

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Old 04 Jan 2006, 11:55 am   #2 (permalink)
Stubby
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
> I bought a new battery for m '90 Camry a month ago. Yesterday I go to
> start it after sitting in freezing temperature for 5 days and nothing -
> no lights or anything. I jump start it and it works fine. I drive it
> for about 15 minutes and park. This morning I go to start it and the
> same thing - nothing. Does the battery need to be recharged or should I
> get a new battery. I didn't leave any lights on or anything the first
> time, I just assumed it was the cold weather. It was one of those cheap
> $29.99 Duralast models from Autozone.
>

Something is "on" and draining your battery overnight. Check the trunk
light, glove compartment light, any appliances you installed such as a
cell phone charger, etc. If nothing turns up, remove some fuses to
isolate the drain.
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Old 04 Jan 2006, 12:01 pm   #3 (permalink)
Travis Jordan
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
> I bought a new battery for m '90 Camry a month ago. Yesterday I go to
> start it after sitting in freezing temperature for 5 days and nothing
> - no lights or anything. I jump start it and it works fine. I drive it
> for about 15 minutes and park. This morning I go to start it and the
> same thing - nothing. Does the battery need to be recharged or should
> I get a new battery. I didn't leave any lights on or anything the
> first time, I just assumed it was the cold weather. It was one of
> those cheap $29.99 Duralast models from Autozone.


Could be a bad battery, or it could be that your charging system has a
problem, or maybe there is a load somewhere (trunk light?) that is
draining the battery overnight.

Check the charging circuit with a voltmeter. Nominal battery voltage is
about 12.6V, with the engine running at 1500 RPM you should measure
about 14V across the battery terminals. Then with the engine off, put
an ammeter in series with the battery. If you see any significant
current drain (more than 50 ma or so) then search for the cause of the
load.

Don't have a voltmeter / ammeter? You can get a perfectly usable one at
Sears for about $10 on sale:
http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/produ...id=03482082000


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Old 04 Jan 2006, 12:35 pm   #4 (permalink)
joe54345@gmail.com
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

What could it be? The last time I used my car before the problem
started was just to move it from one side of the street to another.
There is no trunk light, the overhead light is off and last night when
I left my car I looked all around it to see if there were any lights
on. Other than the lights what else could be on?

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Old 04 Jan 2006, 01:03 pm   #5 (permalink)
Stubby
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

Stubby wrote:
> joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
>
>> I bought a new battery for m '90 Camry a month ago. Yesterday I go to
>> start it after sitting in freezing temperature for 5 days and nothing -
>> no lights or anything. I jump start it and it works fine. I drive it
>> for about 15 minutes and park. This morning I go to start it and the
>> same thing - nothing. Does the battery need to be recharged or should I
>> get a new battery. I didn't leave any lights on or anything the first
>> time, I just assumed it was the cold weather. It was one of those cheap
>> $29.99 Duralast models from Autozone.
>>

> Something is "on" and draining your battery overnight. Check the trunk
> light, glove compartment light, any appliances you installed such as a
> cell phone charger, etc. If nothing turns up, remove some fuses to
> isolate the drain.


Another thought: Maybe the battery isn't getting charged properly. A
slight drain could take it below the amount needed to start in the
morning. I had a very similar problem about 25 years ago and in the
end, it was due to a loose alternator belt!
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Old 04 Jan 2006, 02:13 pm   #6 (permalink)
timbirr@mailcity.com
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

Probably not the battery, although it could be. Why did you replace the
other battery and how old was it?

Most batteries returned in the first month are fine, it's usually the
rig's alternator, or something else as had been mentioned....by the
way, I learned this the "hardway" a couple of decades ago after I went
through 3 cheapie K-Mart batteries in a few weeks....

Nowadays, I buy better batteries, but nothing will work if it isn't
getting the proper charge or is being slowly drained of life....

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Old 04 Jan 2006, 02:30 pm   #7 (permalink)
joe54345@gmail.com
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

I replaced it because it died as well. It was over 4 years old though.
the battery the guy gave me to replace it was smaller than the old
battery - buy about 20%. I mentioned it to him and he said that was the
replacement in the computer. I didn't think he knew what he was talking
about. I talked to another guy at Autozone and he said that could be
the problem. He said it might not provide the right amount of juice.
But then wouldn't it at least put the lights on or allow the power
locks to work?

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Old 04 Jan 2006, 02:46 pm   #8 (permalink)
timbirr@mailcity.com
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

More important than the perceived size is the group number. A '90
camry should have a group 35 battery and that number should be obvious
on the case.....other's could work, but a 35 is standard and if you got
another size, it might be worth investigating. However, as mentioned,
there are a number of more likely scenarios....

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Old 04 Jan 2006, 07:56 pm   #9 (permalink)
tomcas
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

Travis Jordan wrote:
> joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
>
>>I bought a new battery for m '90 Camry a month ago. Yesterday I go to
>>start it after sitting in freezing temperature for 5 days and nothing
>>- no lights or anything. I jump start it and it works fine. I drive it
>>for about 15 minutes and park. This morning I go to start it and the
>>same thing - nothing. Does the battery need to be recharged or should
>>I get a new battery. I didn't leave any lights on or anything the
>>first time, I just assumed it was the cold weather. It was one of
>>those cheap $29.99 Duralast models from Autozone.

>
>
> Could be a bad battery, or it could be that your charging system has a
> problem, or maybe there is a load somewhere (trunk light?) that is
> draining the battery overnight.
>
> Check the charging circuit with a voltmeter. Nominal battery voltage is
> about 12.6V, with the engine running at 1500 RPM you should measure
> about 14V across the battery terminals. Then with the engine off, put
> an ammeter in series with the battery. If you see any significant
> current drain (more than 50 ma or so) then search for the cause of the
> load.
>
> Don't have a voltmeter / ammeter? You can get a perfectly usable one at
> Sears for about $10 on sale:
> http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/produ...id=03482082000
>
>

I don't think a 50 ma drain is going to kill the battery overnight,
even with only a 15 minute charge. It would take at least an amp or two.
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Old 05 Jan 2006, 01:30 pm   #10 (permalink)
Travis Jordan
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Default Re: month old battery dies for second time, should I return it?

joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
> What could it be? The last time I used my car before the problem
> started was just to move it from one side of the street to another.
> There is no trunk light, the overhead light is off and last night when
> I left my car I looked all around it to see if there were any lights
> on. Other than the lights what else could be on?


I've seen leaky capacitors in factory radios cause these symptoms,
although I must admit it is much more likely that you got a bad battery
or have a bad alternator / charging circuit.

Instead of speculating you need to measure the current draw from the
battery to see if there is a load on it, or not, and check the charging
voltage to see if you have a charging problem.


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