Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?

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Old 01 Feb 2006, 03:58 pm   #1 (permalink)
joe54345@gmail.com
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Default Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?

I just tried to start my '90 Camry after about 5 days being idle in
temperatures ranging from 30-60 degrees. I had a thread here about a
month ago

http://tinyurl.com/8avhp

and I thought the problem could have been that I was given a cheap
battery from Autozone. I returned the battery and purchased a battery
with more power. I purchased a 26r-dl Duralast with 575 cold cranking
amps and 710 above 32 amps. It worked ok for about a month - even
starting in freezing temperatures, but it always bugged me how it took
about 4 or 5 revs to actually catch when I started it. I had recently
purchased a new battery for my Civic and that catches right away. I
checked everywhere to see if some little light was left on and found
nothing. I had the guy at Autozone check the alternator when I got this
new battery and said it was fine. What could it be? What does it mean
when a car has a hard time turning over? Could I have received another
dud battery from Autozone?

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Old 01 Feb 2006, 04:10 pm   #2 (permalink)
davidj92
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?

joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
Could I have received
> another dud battery from Autozone?


Autozone batteries have a high failure rate, you could have gotten another
bad one.
I got a new boss when I was lead mechanic on a fleet and his goal was to cut
cost. He made me start using parts from Autozone, including batteries. We
were constantly changing batteries, almost always under warranty. They were
good about honoring the warranty but it made so much down-time the boss had
me switch back to Interstate batteries. Very seldom have a problem with
them, there are other good batteries as well. The ones at Wal-Mart are made
by a major battery manufacturer (Eveready I think) and are reasonably
priced.
davidj92


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Old 01 Feb 2006, 04:26 pm   #3 (permalink)
timbirr@mailcity.com
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?


joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
> I just tried to start my '90 Camry after about 5 days being idle in
> temperatures ranging from 30-60 degrees. I had a thread here about a
> month ago Could I have received another
> dud battery from Autozone?



Who knows? Johnson Controls makes Duralast, they also make DieHard,
Interstate, WalMart, Optima, etc. The BCI 26 is actually smaller than
the OEM of BCI 35, but it still should do the job. If something is
marginal on the car, the 35 may have just the extra oomph to overcome,
but still....

I will say I gave up on the AutoZone, Pep Boys, K-Mart batteries of the
world, just because I DID have trouble with them. Never have had
trouble with NAPA or Interstates...Knock on Wood....

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Old 01 Feb 2006, 06:02 pm   #4 (permalink)
Daniel
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?

Batteries have freshness dating - might check that.
If it's been sitting on the shelf more than a couple of months, plates
begin to sulfate reducing battery life.
Usually the date is coded, like A for January, B for Feb. etc.,
Could also be you have a current drain. Cheapest way is to put a ligt
bulb between the negative battery post and the ground cable, with that
cable disconnected. If the bulb glows you need to start pulling fuses
until you find the offending circuit, then track it down further. Of
course an ammeter would be more accurate, and digital meters are
available inexpensively.

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Old 01 Feb 2006, 07:31 pm   #5 (permalink)
tomcas
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could bethe problem?

joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
> I just tried to start my '90 Camry after about 5 days being idle in
> temperatures ranging from 30-60 degrees. I had a thread here about a
> month ago
>
> http://tinyurl.com/8avhp
>
> and I thought the problem could have been that I was given a cheap
> battery from Autozone. I returned the battery and purchased a battery
> with more power. I purchased a 26r-dl Duralast with 575 cold cranking
> amps and 710 above 32 amps. It worked ok for about a month - even
> starting in freezing temperatures, but it always bugged me how it took
> about 4 or 5 revs to actually catch when I started it. I had recently
> purchased a new battery for my Civic and that catches right away. I
> checked everywhere to see if some little light was left on and found
> nothing. I had the guy at Autozone check the alternator when I got this
> new battery and said it was fine. What could it be? What does it mean
> when a car has a hard time turning over? Could I have received another
> dud battery from Autozone?
>

Correct me if I'm wrong, but at no point did you or autozone check for a
current drain with the car off. The charging, storage, and starting
components can all be perfectly fine but if something is draining the
battery when the car is not running you should expect the battery to
die. You need to put an ammeter in line while the car is off and check
the current drain. I'm guessing about 1/2 to 1 amp over five days will
easily drain down the battery. If its higher than that you may even see
a good size spark when you tap the cable on the battery terminal. You
could just disconnet the battery next time when you are going to let the
car sit for a few days and see what happens. Overly advanced timing
will cause slow cranking but this effects mostly the big V8s.
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Old 01 Feb 2006, 11:14 pm   #6 (permalink)
onehappymadman@yahoo.com
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?


joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
> I just tried to start my '90 Camry after about 5 days being idle in
> temperatures ranging from 30-60 degrees. I had a thread here about a
> month ago
>
> http://tinyurl.com/8avhp
>
> and I thought the problem could have been that I was given a cheap
> battery from Autozone. I returned the battery and purchased a battery
> with more power. I purchased a 26r-dl Duralast with 575 cold cranking
> amps and 710 above 32 amps. It worked ok for about a month - even
> starting in freezing temperatures, but it always bugged me how it took
> about 4 or 5 revs to actually catch when I started it. I had recently
> purchased a new battery for my Civic and that catches right away. I
> checked everywhere to see if some little light was left on and found
> nothing. I had the guy at Autozone check the alternator when I got this
> new battery and said it was fine. What could it be? What does it mean
> when a car has a hard time turning over? Could I have received another
> dud battery from Autozone?



Do you have a battery charger at home? Try removing and charging the
battery with the home (wall-outlet) battery charger.

Reason I mention it, the battery died in my parents' car. I suggested
to dad that he change the battery, it was about 3 years old, but
instead he just charged it, and now it's working fine. I guess maybe
mom made too many short trips, and the short trips weren't enough to
let the battery recover its energy from turning the starter motor. He
does, however, now carry and maintain a jump-start battery in the
trunk.

Do you make lots of short trips, or do you drive it on long trips?

Then again, if you can get a complete refund on this battery, go for
it.

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Old 02 Feb 2006, 08:01 am   #7 (permalink)
joe54345@gmail.com
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?

how would they check for the current drain? I'm pretty sure at the time
he checked the alternator the car was off and he used the same machine
he used to check the battery.

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Old 02 Feb 2006, 08:04 am   #8 (permalink)
joe54345@gmail.com
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?

I bought this car less than a year ago and it had 135k miles on it. It
wasn't well taken care of so what are the odds that the timing belt was
never changed or even corrected? Probably pretty good. I'd hate to
spend the money to fix the timing belt when it's having all these other
problems (I also have the distributor cap problem that is so prevalent
in camrys). Is there anything else that could cause slow cranking
besides the timing?

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Old 02 Feb 2006, 10:43 am   #9 (permalink)
joe54345@gmail.com
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?

No battery charger, maybe that's a good idea to have one. I doubt the
car would die if I just drove somewhere and left it for a couple of
hours. What are the odds that if I took it into the shop that they'd
find the problem? I'm not too mechanically inclined so doing what
others have mentioned above seems a little foreign to me.

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Old 02 Feb 2006, 11:06 am   #10 (permalink)
onehappymadman@yahoo.com
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Default Re: Another Autozone battery dies in my '90 Camry, what could be the problem?


joe54345@gmail.com wrote:
> No battery charger, maybe that's a good idea to have one. I doubt the
> car would die if I just drove somewhere and left it for a couple of
> hours. What are the odds that if I took it into the shop that they'd
> find the problem? I'm not too mechanically inclined so doing what
> others have mentioned above seems a little foreign to me.



If you take it into the shop, you could spend lots of $$$ unless you do
some of the work for them. It's your choice.

1. Try what others have suggested, see if there is a current drain.
If using a multimeter to measure current is too difficult, then for a
few bucks, buy a 12-volt-DC light bulb, the correct size light bulb
socket, and two wires. Disconnect the red (+) terminal from your
battery. Connect the end of one wire to the light bulb socket, and the
other end to the (+) battery terminal. For the second wire, connect
one end of the wire to the light bulb socket, and the other end to the
big wire that you just disconnected from the battery. If the light
lights up, you know you have a current drain somewhere.

2. Get a battery charger. Here's one:
http://www.partsamerica.com/ProductD...tnumber=SE112S

3. Exchange your battery for another battery that's more reliable.
Others on this group have made good recommendations for reliable
battery brands.

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