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Dead battery- urgent


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9 replies to this topic

#1 gritle

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 09:12 AM

While I was driving home last night my car slowly died. It has been cold here, Minneapolis, so I think this is the culprit. I have known that my battery was bad for some time but done nothing about. AS I was driving the car's interior lights began to dim and the car slowed. to a stop. I had the alternator tested this summer and was told it was alright but the battery needed to be replaced. All of this leads me to believe all I need is a new battery.

Now my car is in the shop and the shop is backed up so they won't be able to get to it for 2-3 hours. I'm thinking I can run and buy a battery and install it myself. I just don't know what kind of battery to get. I drive a 98 legacy l series wagon. Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

thanks:eek:

#2 gritle

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 09:27 AM

While I was driving home last night my car slowly died. It has been cold here, Minneapolis, so I think this is the culprit. I have known that my battery was bad for some time but done nothing about. AS I was driving the car's interior lights began to dim and the car slowed. to a stop. I had the alternator tested this summer and was told it was alright but the battery needed to be replaced. All of this leads me to believe all I need is a new battery.

Now my car is in the shop and the shop is backed up so they won't be able to get to it for 2-3 hours. I'm thinking I can run and buy a battery and install it myself. I just don't know what kind of battery to get. I drive a 98 legacy l series wagon. Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

thanks:eek:

#3 bheinen74

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 09:31 AM

They should have a computer to llokup and get you the correct battery. just make sure the new battery has the terminals located the same position. if the posts are nearer one side and on the top, make sure the replacement is also located exact. I have had times when the posts on the battery are on the top, but centered (not off to the side) and the cables would not reach...
There are top posts
there are side posts

top posts can be to the side or placed in the center. , and if they are nearer the edge, you need to get the same.

+ positive terminals and -negative terminals sometimes are reversed too.

#4 nipper

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 09:31 AM

Get a name brand 5 year battery. Just go in to the store tell them what you got and what you need.


Now what bothers me, is a bad battery can kill an altenaotr. If its an altenator i wouls recomend getting it from a dealer (look at 1st subaru for prices and see if they will match it) as it can be cheaper then the store. A car doesnt usually die while running because of a bad battery, but because of a bad alt.

Not that it doesnt happen.

nipper

#5 Rooster2

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 11:51 AM

Did the battery/alternator dash warning lights come on anytime before the car stalled?

Once a car is running, the battery doesn't do much, except to get charged by the alternator. Usually a dash warning light tells you the battery is not getting charged, which is another way of telling you that the alternator has failed. I suspect that your alternator is the culprit, and as you have said, the battery is not strong, so you may need to replace both the alternator and the battery.

#6 Durania

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 12:03 PM

I bet 100% on alternator.

Edited by Durania, 18 December 2008 - 01:04 PM.


#7 bheinen74

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 12:13 PM

when a battery goes bad, it cannot take a charge anymore, and the voltage drops off, to less than needed.

#8 frag

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 01:37 PM

If it's the alt, 1stSubaruparts sells a very good rebuilt cheap. I've had one in my car for the last four years.

#9 RallyKeith

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 02:35 PM

when a battery goes bad, it cannot take a charge anymore, and the voltage drops off, to less than needed.


This is true, but that doesn't typically happen while the car is running. The alternator is sourcing the current required to keep the battery charged and run all the electronics in a car. I've driven a subaru (96 Legacy GT) with a bad battery that I could jump start and drive for an hour with the headlights and stereo on, but when shut off the car would immediately not start. All that time the alternator was supplying all the current required to run.

If however the alternator goes bad the battery has to source all the current and it eventually run out and the car will die, just as mentioned by the original poster.

Now, as I said in my first sentence, that is typical. Doesn't mean a battery can't go bad in a way that creates a short circuit and the alternator can't supply the required current.

Synopsis: Check the alternator. From the failure mode the odds are good it is the culprit.

Keith

#10 Skip

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 03:37 PM

Well said Keith. I agree completely.

One question.

Is there a fusible link between the alt output and the bat?




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