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Thread: Problems starting car. Quick advice or opinions!

  1. #1
    Senior Member Mitsubaru's Avatar
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    Problems starting car. Quick advice or opinions!

    Ok, so I got a 99 civic si winter beater. I haven't started it in about 2 weeks and yesterday it wouldn't start. I still had power, ignition turned on, fuel pump pumping but when I went to actually start it, the whole dash would flicker and it wouldn't start. Now, I know that's usually a symptom of a low powered batter so I had my neighbor boos my for about a couple of minutes and then it started no issue. I let it run for about 30 minutes on my way to work and then later on when I tried to go home, it did the same thing but eventually is started on its own. So I drove for about an hour after work to try and give it a good charge. Then, this evening on my way to work, it almost didn't start with the same symptoms but then finally got it going. So I let run for about 45 minutes and in the parking lot at work I popped the hood and decided to clean out the positive pole to get rid of all that blue battery acid ( I think that's what it is) and then I tried to start it so it could charge some more but now it won't even crank. Ignition won't turn on, light in the trunk looks very dim.

    So basically my question is this, is this most likely just the battery itself? Or possibly the alternator?
    Last edited by MarcGSR; 12-15-2014 at 01:34 PM. Reason: more precise thread title

  2. #2
    Senior Member Mitsubaru's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    And with that, if anyone's got a spare battery that will fit the civic let me know how much you want for it. It's the small batteries.

  3. #3
    HATER! MiniD1CK5's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    Sounds like the battery is junk, BTW using your alternator to charge a dead battery is extremely hard on it.
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    Premium Member Nabs's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    Do you have a multimeter? If not then you should probably get one and check the voltage when the car is off and when it's running. If the voltage doesn't go up when the car is running then the alternator isn't working but you should already have a battery light pop up on the dash if the charging system isn't working.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Mitsubaru's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    Yeah that battery light never showed up. So that's why I'm assuming it's just that the batter is crap. Well I'll be going to Canadian tire to pick up a new battery. Mutlimeter will probably be on my shopping list too. Even the sticker on the battery is all shriveled up and looks somewhat burnt. On top of this mess, I had my battery blanket and oil pan heater plugged in but I started driving away before unplugging it like a champ...so one of the wires started sparking lol not a good day.

  6. #6
    Premium Member Nabs's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    Sounds like you need one of these! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects...ed/description


    When they come out that is...
    "Exhaust gases go into the turbocharger and spin it, witchcraft happens and you go faster"

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  7. #7
    Senior Member Mitsubaru's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    That's awesome! I love KickStarter. That'd be pretty sweet. Thanks for the help guys. I'll update you tomorrow morning if the new battery is what I needed. Well regardless, I'll need a new battery.

  8. #8
    Junior Member qwikyking's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    did you check to see if the terminals where tight? i've had a few times the terminals came loose, started in the morning, then "dead" on my way home, also i do like the kickstarter idea, but i've gotta say i'm glad i found this

    http://www.amazon.com/MinnKota-AC-Po...=1418435682942

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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    Take advantage of the nice weather and just grab a new battery. It's not worth freezing to boost your car.

    My RSX got a new battery when I got the car and then two years later it just stopped starting. Even after driving highway for 2 hours straight. Turned out to be battery. It "tested" good, and I had to fight with Canadian Tire to replace it. Similar to what you said, it just got worse and worse the two days I waited ot get it replaced. The woman said "I guarantee I have a new trolling motor battery". I never her saw her their, so maybe it left her stranded too.

    Similar issue with my TDi. 10 year old battery started my car every day through winter. Summer came along and it decided no more. New battery, no problem.

    You can consider getting one of those idiot prof Genius Chargers for like $120. Toss it on each week to keep your battery topped. Alternator will never fully charge a battery. This is on my buy list once I stop being a cheap/poor ass.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Mitsubaru's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    Yeah that was the first thing I checked. They are on there pretty tight. The only issue with the battery pole was covered with that blue stuff, calcium or battery acid or whatever it is.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Snidd's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    The Battery Doctor is where ive gotten car batteries cheap for my first cars/winter beater.Ive never had anything wrong with them.pretty sure they are located just down the street from Silver City towards Dairy-Queen.

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  12. #12
    Senior Member Mitsubaru's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    Quote Originally Posted by Snidd View Post
    The Battery Doctor is where ive gotten car batteries cheap for my first cars/winter beater.Ive never had anything wrong with them.pretty sure they are located just down the street from Silver City towards Dairy-Queen.
    Yeah I see that place all the time. Didn't know they had automotive batteries. Thanks man. I'll definitely check it out.

    Also quick update, my girlfriend came to boos the car since she works near my work and she just got off work. So we jumped the battery and it started fine. So I know it's not the starter or anything serious. I let it run for about 2 hours and hopefully it'll have enough charge to start. But I've noticed something that I've been doing since I've purchased the car...turns out I've been leaving the car in ACC mode without noticing. I know it sounds like a rookie move, and it is, but it's slightly broken and I was never able to turn the key past the ACC (thinking that I had it in the OFF position). But, I have no stereo or deck plugged into the car, just a whole in the dash. But with that being said, even though it's in ACC mode will there still be wasted power? And if so, to what? Power windows definitely didn't work in ACC mode, no lights, and I'm assuming it doesn't go to any of the ignition systems. Maybe the cigarette lighter? But it's not like I have it pressed in actually sucking juice. But needless to say, I figured out a trick to actually getting it into OFF position, takes a little bit but now I know lol and yes I do feel stupid.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Mitsubaru's Avatar
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    Re: Quick advice or opinions!

    Just a quick update.

    Thanks for everyone's help. I did go to Battery Doctor after work and I got there around 7 am and they didn't open until 9 so I went to Canadian Tire which opened at 730. I bought a battery from them and everything in cost me about 120 bucks with 5 year warranty replacement and a 10$ gift card promo for the weekend. So not bad. I was originally going to install at my place but after reversing out of the parking lot I didn't put enough gas into first gear and killed the engine so I had no choice but to install it there. Did so, and everything works fine now, so far.

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    Re: Problems starting car. Quick advice or opinions!

    Sweet. Best thing to do is just get a new battery. The charger I was referring to is cheaper than I thought.

    http://www.amazon.ca/NOCO-G3500-3-5-...&keywords=noco this is what D0rkage is telling me go buy. They also have a lithium booster pack that will start a car without a battery. I think that booster is on sale this week at CT

  15. #15
    Senior Member Mitsubaru's Avatar
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    Re: Problems starting car. Quick advice or opinions!

    Thanks for the info Clutched. I think I will need a battery booster next spring since my Lancer still has the original battery from when I bought it new in 2009. I've had no issues with the battery at all yet but it'll be 6 years old when spring rolls around. Plus it's parked in the middle of nowhere so there will be no plugs around.

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