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Trollerator
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my battery that was brand new at the end of last summer started very weak the other day... two days later only the dash lights dimly light and the fog lights, headlight light very weak... there is no start, no crank, just a single "click" when I try.

Obviously the battery is low and possibly something needs to be found as to where the drain is occurring.

I tried to jump it and it still didn't crank or seem to have much more power flowing through it. I left it hooked up to my wife's (running) 9-5 for at least 5-10 minutes, still just a 'click' and no crank.

Is the battery just too far gone?

Before I buy a charger and battery, is the 9-5 battery close enough/safe to swap into the c900 to try?

Anything else to look at?

sounds like my next step is to check grounds.
 

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If it wont start even hooked up to another car for 5-10 minutes, you probably have an internal wiring problem. Theres no reason why it shouldn't have started when hooked up to a running car.

Either wicked bad battery ground or battery positive.
 

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Trollerator
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Even though it started a few weeks ago, and started two days ago? By started, I mean it went into the driveway from the garage,and back again, never driven on a long trip. Not sure what would go bad in two days of sitting?

I'll definitely inspect the wires/grounds in the daylight
 

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Not quite sure. I may be wrong about the cables...but thats kinda what it sounds like by deduction.
 

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It could just be that you've not driven it enough to facilitate a full charge/recharge on the battery, but that doesn't explain why it drained in the first place, unless it's sat for a very long time(?).

I'd suggest checking all of the lighting fixtures in the car, the trunk area light for example, to make sure that none of them have been left in the "ON" position (had a friend who had this very issue and it turned out to be the trunk compartment light had been left in the ON position).
 

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Also, be sure your jumper cables are working well. I have gone through a few sets that just plain don't work.

You certainly won't regret the investment in a charger either, I use mine all the time!
 

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Trollerator
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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
I have jumped cars with these cables before (recently), but I'll look at those also. They are, however, still very new and in excellent condition.

The car sits all winter since it is a convertible on summer tires and a third vehicle for a two person household. ;)

I did check the trunk light and it was off. So is the interior 'dome' light-- but I changed the blub and still that stopped working, there may be an issue with the switch? It does work but when I put the center console back together it seems to just stop working after a while.

thanks for the input everyone

p.s. now I realize (and regret) not disconnecting the battery for winter. I know! stupid, but was not on my mind at the time and I forgot :oops:
 

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Is it correct that this car does a fair amount of "sitting."

FWIW, I commute by train to work during the week, so my cars are only driven on the weekends. I circulate a trickle charger between cars to keep the batteries up. Otherwise, (with my 9-5 especially) they drain the battery after a few weeks.

It may be the case that when you started the car two days ago, you used enough juice to make it so the car wouldn't start yesterday. I would try giving it a full charge using something like a Battery Minder (Amazon.com: BatteryMINDer Charger/Maintainer/Desulphator - 1.3 Amp, 12 Volt, Model# 12117: Automotive)
 

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Trollerator
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
thanks, will definitely get a charger.
My 9-5 sits quite a bit since my wife and I carpool in hers most weekdays, so I probably could use one for my aero as well as this old 900! :)
 

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You can also get one that charges two cars simultaneously. I don't have a link handy...

The ones that plug into the cigarette lighter are nice too - especially if your battery has a cover, like some 9-5's
 

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I did check the trunk light and it was off. So is the interior 'dome' light-- but I changed the blub and still that stopped working, there may be an issue with the switch?
Could be, there is definitely a short occurring somewhere, but since it worked initially and only failed after a while, that points to the culprit being somewhere else.

Have you had a look at the fuse panel and, in particular, the grounding point(s) beneath it there on the lower 'A' pillar behind the carpeted baluster/body molding?
 

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Speaking of batteries...It is just possible that you've a dead cell in the battery, meaning that either the battery fluid is low (due to evaporation), or the fluid in one of the chambers has dropped low enough to expose the element.

Using a flat-bladed screw driver, try popping off the batteries' caps and having a look inside. When you look down into the filler necks, the fluid (looks like clear water) level should be just touching the bottom of the filler neck. If it's not, obtain some distilled water (it HAS to be distilled) from your local grocery store and top up the levels, again, just to the base/bottom of the filler necks, give the battery a charge and try it again, or jump it and allow the engine to run long enough to give the battery a really good recharging.
 

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Clean the battery posts and the terminal connectors with a brush/sandpaper/file/whatever, and try again. If that doesn't work, clean the main ground on the lower radiator cross member.

I sincerely doubt a battery that young has gone that bad just from sitting, but if so it should have a warranty. It's certainly possible and it has happened to me, but only after doing dumb things with it (driving home with a jump box attached to it when the alternator wasn't charging it). A simple load test at autozone will solve that mystery, if they can even get it to charge.

A short would be last on my list of things to check. The only type of short I've heard of on a c900 that could prevent a jump start from working was internal to the alternator, and that has to be about as rare as they come.
 

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I mention it because I've seen batteries, new batteries, die during non-use/storage, though the temperature gradients at the time might have played a role'?'

I don't know about the alternator, I was thinking more so along the lines of the starters' relay solenoid, which would have been my next guess, but only after I would have instructed them to crawl under the car to the point where the top of their head was even with the firewall/bulkhead so that they could visually inspect the terminal were the batteries' lead and alternator connect to it (the starters' relay) for corrosion/loose/frayed cables.
 

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I'd disconnect the battery altogether when you store the car. When you try and jump it do you do it with the other car only idling or at say 2-3000 rpm?

If you need to borrow a charger I've got one.
 

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Trollerator
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
SO I tried this again...

This time the battery was totally dead, not even enough juice to power the headlights like it did before.

I hooked it up to the running 9-5, and triple checked the connections on the jumper cables. I immediately got power to the c900 lights. Good, the connection is OK.

I tried to start and this time it cranks! but very slow and weak. I let it 'charge' on the running car for 5-10 minutes but it did not improve. I think this battery just might be so toast the jump can't help it?

I am probably just going to grab a new battery, and it if doesn't start then I have some real problem to look into. :roll:

I disconnected the cables and the car wouldn't even power the lights again. dead as a doornail!
 

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Sound like we have the same problem, there is some mystery electrical draw. I keep the battery disconnected when it’s not on the road. I’m taking my vert in to the shop by next week hopefully we be able to figure out the draw, I’ll let you know what it is if we find it.
 

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Grounds are a very common problem in c900's. The connections and surfaces get corroded/rusted and cause poor connections. Good clean grounds can make a c900 run SO much better. Hit every surface with a wire wheel or mini grinder. Even if this isn't the problem, it's still a good thing to do to any c900. It'll start faster, run smoother, etc.
 
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