How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 15 Old Nov 10th, 2009, 7:31 pm Thread Starter
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How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

I tried to start up my 02 SUV that was sitting in the garage and all I got from the engine was a very rapid clicking sound. All of the dash lights came on, but it would not start. I checked the battery's voltage with my cheep meter and it read about 12-13 volts, but that is without a load. I then hooked up a charger but it said that the battery was at full charge. I was driving it earlier today without a problem.

Do you think I need a new battery or will I need to get it towed to the shop for a better diagnosis. I replaced the last battery about 3 years ago. Hate to go to the trouble of buying a new battery when the problem might be something else. Any ideas?

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

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post #2 of 15 Old Nov 10th, 2009, 7:34 pm
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

Try jump starting it if you have another vehicle and drive it to AutoZone. They can do a free check on the alternator to see if that could be a problem. But it does sound like the battery is dying. Depends on how long you've had it. Just my 2 cents. Good luck
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post #3 of 15 Old Nov 10th, 2009, 7:44 pm Thread Starter
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

Seems that once the battery starts to go, they are very hard ( lately) to jump. I'll give that a try in the morning. If not then I'll pull it and take to one of the local auto parts places for testing. Guess they can test it with a load.

Thanks

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post #4 of 15 Old Nov 10th, 2009, 8:10 pm
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

What you're describing could also be something as simple as a bad connection,
usually the ground, check and see if there is any corrosion on the battery cable,
if there is clean it with a wire brush, scraper or even sandpaper,

when you're done cover the cable connector with grease or vaseline to prevent future corrosion.


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post #5 of 15 Old Nov 10th, 2009, 8:35 pm
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

I am not a tech, but the symptoms you describe sound like a starter. What is the life span of your battery, 3yr/5yr? If it is close to the end of its life, I'd replace it.
12/13 volts is enough to start your vehicle. I haven't had good luck having Kragen's check starters or batteries under load. AZ, I don't know.
If you want to check your alternator, put your meter on the battery without starting the SUV and read voltage. Then start vehicle and read voltage at the battery. Any voltage increase while running means the alternator is charging.

Last edited by seahabit; Nov 10th, 2009 at 9:37 pm.
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post #6 of 15 Old Nov 10th, 2009, 9:18 pm Thread Starter
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

I appreciate the advise... Hans, the battery is clean with no corrosion. Grounds seem good. Everything is tight. I'll try a jump start in the morning and then proceed. Battery is at least 3 years old so a new one won't hurt. Thanks again for the advise.

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

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post #7 of 15 Old Nov 11th, 2009, 12:29 am
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dandiver
I appreciate the advise... Hans, the battery is clean with no corrosion. Grounds seem good. Everything is tight. I'll try a jump start in the morning and then proceed. Battery is at least 3 years old so a new one won't hurt. Thanks again for the advise.
Hey Dan! Batteries can easily last double that, BUT, auto batteries do not like to be "cycled." If you run it dead just 3 times, you get to buy a new battery.

Try an inexpensive 2 amp auto trickle charger for stored batteries. $20-$30 will save a $100 battery every time.

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." (Some really OLD friggin' White dude who couldn't have possibly known what he was talking about!) WARNING: Official HATE speech!
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post #8 of 15 Old Nov 11th, 2009, 4:12 am Thread Starter
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

Thanks Jay, That might be part of the problem as I mostly ride the K1200LT and the car does sit for several days at a time between usage. Hope to know later today. Appreciate the advise.

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

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post #9 of 15 Old Nov 11th, 2009, 5:34 am
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

I would say that it is the battery. If it was the starter you would get one loud click, nothing else. I would pull the battery (place it in the back case of the LT) and take it to Autozone to get it tested. I have done that with my cars battery. As said before, heat is the number one killer of auto batteries.

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post #10 of 15 Old Nov 11th, 2009, 5:39 am Thread Starter
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

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Originally Posted by mtrevelino
I would say that it is the battery. If it was the starter you would get one loud click, nothing else. I would pull the battery (place it in the back case of the LT) and take it to Autozone to get it tested. I have done that with my cars battery. As said before, heat is the number one killer of auto batteries.
That's what I plan to do as soon as they open. Hope it's that simple. It's an 02 Infinity QX4 with about 83,000 trouble free miles except for 2 batteries and a little preventative maintenance. Wish the company still made it as It really has been a trouble free vehicular.

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

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post #11 of 15 Old Nov 11th, 2009, 7:59 am
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dandiver
That's what I plan to do as soon as they open. Hope it's that simple. It's an 02 Infinity QX4 with about 83,000 trouble free miles except for 2 batteries and a little preventative maintenance. Wish the company still made it as It really has been a trouble free vehicular.
Boy, will this age me or what? Do cages come with starter solenoids anymore?? My ole GTO has one and it threw craps several years ago, and the sound of it giving up wuz like you described --- clickety click click click. No start. Battery good. Solenoid on the fender shroud and dude at the auto shoppe replaced it in about 10 minutes - been good to go ever since. Anyway, just wanted to see if anyone knows solenoids anymore??
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post #12 of 15 Old Nov 11th, 2009, 8:08 am Thread Starter
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

Ya Hooooooo !!!! It was the battery. Put the old ( almost 4 years old) battery on the bike and had the local auto parts place check it out. Under load it was putting out about 7-8 volts. Got back, installed it and the SUV fired up like new. Don't know if other SUV's have the same reliability, but this one has not had anything go bad in about 83,000 miles except for a $45.00 fan switch that took me about 30 minutes to replace about a year ago. thanks again for all of the advise.

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

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post #13 of 15 Old Nov 11th, 2009, 4:38 pm
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick
Boy, will this age me or what? Do cages come with starter solenoids anymore?? My ole GTO has one and it threw craps several years ago, and the sound of it giving up wuz like you described --- clickety click click click. No start. Battery good. Solenoid on the fender shroud and dude at the auto shoppe replaced it in about 10 minutes - been good to go ever since. Anyway, just wanted to see if anyone knows solenoids anymore??
Well.....My 70 Maverick had one--speaking of Ford death traps.....

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post #14 of 15 Old Nov 12th, 2009, 5:25 am Thread Starter
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

As a side note, While removing the battery, I dropped one of the battery hold down side bars somewhere in the engine compartment. I figured it would either fall to the bottom and end up on the garage or be easily found by just rummaging around. WRONG !!!

This threaded piece of metal is the length of an unused pencil and about as thick as a heavy coat hanger with a slight bend in the bottom. I looked all around and over the engine compartment, all around the ground, shock the SUV and even with a strong light could not find it. Because it was in the area of the fan, I know I had to find it before testing the new battery. Thoroughly checked the fan compartment and nothing. Finally I crawled under the engine and had to remove about 8 screws that were holding a heavy plastic cowling between the front bumper and engine. There is was, taking a nap oblivious to all of the surrounding commotion... Hooked up the new battery and all was good.

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

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02 K1200 LT (gone but not forgotten)
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post #15 of 15 Old Nov 12th, 2009, 5:34 pm
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Re: How to tell if the battery of the SUV is the problem?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dandiver
As a side note, While removing the battery, I dropped one of the battery hold down side bars somewhere in the engine compartment. I figured it would either fall to the bottom and end up on the garage or be easily found by just rummaging around. WRONG !!!

This threaded piece of metal is the length of an unused pencil and about as thick as a heavy coat hanger with a slight bend in the bottom. I looked all around and over the engine compartment, all around the ground, shock the SUV and even with a strong light could not find it. Because it was in the area of the fan, I know I had to find it before testing the new battery. Thoroughly checked the fan compartment and nothing. Finally I crawled under the engine and had to remove about 8 screws that were holding a heavy plastic cowling between the front bumper and engine. There is was, taking a nap oblivious to all of the surrounding commotion... Hooked up the new battery and all was good.
Good deal, Dan! Now, if you start her any less than, say, every 7 days, hook her up to your trickle charger, and you're set.

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." (Some really OLD friggin' White dude who couldn't have possibly known what he was talking about!) WARNING: Official HATE speech!
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