Car won't start and lights dim....help?!?

Discussion in 'Fox 5.0 Mustang Tech' started by mbl585, Dec 15, 2003.


  1. mbl585

    mbl585 Founding Member

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    I recently went to start my car and instead of cranking up, the lights came on then dimmed immediately and I couldn't get my car to do anything. I then tried again and no lights came on at all. I checked voltage on the battery and was at 12.54 which I think should be enough to crank up the car. I then tried again and nothing but while holding the key in the starting position, the lights on the dash started getting a little brighter and then I turned the key back. I put my batter on my trickle charger and it charged for 3 minutes and then said ready/charged. Looked around the battery to see if anything was loose and I didn't find anything. I then went to try starting it with the battery still hooked up to the charger (woops didn't mean to do that) and the lights came on a little more with the key on position but nothing when trying to start it. I let it sit for a couple minutes, then I tried to start it with the charging cables disonnected and it started right up like a champ, like nothing happened. I then turned it off and started it 20 minutes later and started right up no problems. What is going on here...anyone have any ideas? I have a 1 year old mini starter and new battery cables about 6 months ago. Could it be bad cable/wire, the starter solenoid (by the battery) that's going?
  2. staticc

    staticc Founding Member

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    id take your battery to discount auto and swap it for a new one.. free.


    Sponsored Ad

  3. Black 93 Fox

    Black 93 Fox Active Member

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    I had the same problem wouldnt start then ten minutes later it acted like nothing ever happened. Well i change the end's of my battery cables not the cables but the terminals? After doing that didnt have any problems at all.

    Something to remeber is when winter comes be prepared for battery problems cold weather plays h e ll on batterys.
  4. Black331Stang

    Black331Stang Active Member

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    yep also check the ground to your block. if good. try a new battery
  5. mbl585

    mbl585 Founding Member

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    Thanks for the suggestions. I just went out to my car to see if it would do it again and it did. This time I just turned my car to the key-on position...the lights came one and then dimmed almost completely out. Tried it again and everything turned on perfectly and started right up. I even wiggled the ignition switch to see if it would do it again and nothing. Does the starter solenoid next to the battery get activated at all at key on? Any other clues as to this?
  6. Black 93 Fox

    Black 93 Fox Active Member

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    The lights and everything is exactly what happened to me even my gauges wouldnt come on. Try replacing the ends of the cables that go on the battery. The two parts are only 5 bucks and if the stock ones are still on there it needs to be replaced. Not that much work either 10mins max. If that doesnt work take your battery to schucks or sumthin and they well test it for free.
  7. mbl585

    mbl585 Founding Member

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    Ok guys i've got some more info to the problem. I came home from work and the battery was still at 12.6 volts. I went in the car, turned ignition to key-on and all lights came on perfect and car started right up. I checked voltage while idling and it was between 13.9 and 14.1 The car ran for about 4-5 minutes. I turned it off and checked voltage of the batter and it was fine. I then went back in the car to try again and once i turned it to the key-on the lights dimmed and slowly the overhead light dimmed until it was out. I then went in and out of the car and no lights no nothing came on! I then checked the batter and it was still at 12.65 volts. What is going on here? I checked the wires, everything is fine. There was some corrosion on one of the terminals but I cleaned that up yesterday. What could cause the car to act like that? Is it a solenoid problem (solenoid next to the battery) that is causing this? Bad fuse? HELP!!!
  8. mbl585

    mbl585 Founding Member

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    UPDATE-- when I wait to open the door the interior lights are on and then slowly start to dim and then are out. If I close the door and open it right after closing it, no lights come on. Basically the longer I keep the door closed, the longer the light will stay on when the door is opened. PLEASE!!! Any help here!
  9. Black 93 Fox

    Black 93 Fox Active Member

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    Did you take your battery out and get it tested yet?
  10. tvmango

    tvmango New Member

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    definately cables. you can get a whole set of cables on ebay from old police 5.0 stck for cheap money
  11. Black 93 Fox

    Black 93 Fox Active Member

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    Just get some new ones there not that much money. And i think every auto parts store has them. Also replace thoes connectors on the end of the cables that go on the battery( forgot what there called) the stock ones suck and are cheap little pices of crap.
  12. tvmango

    tvmango New Member

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    I'm sorry,,, they are new, they are old stock from georgia highway patrol. pretty cheap, I think they were 20-30 $$ for all the cables in the batery/starting system But yeah you can get them anywhere, and like black 93 fox said , get the wire with the battery teminal clamps already one them, not the cheesy cut to fit/ bolt down sqishing kind...
  13. Black 93 Fox

    Black 93 Fox Active Member

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    If the cables dont work then its got to be your battery or a soleniod.
  14. mbl585

    mbl585 Founding Member

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    Thanks for the help. I will do some work on it tomorrow and give you guys an update! =)
  15. Black 93 Fox

    Black 93 Fox Active Member

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    No problem thats what everyone is here for :nice:

    I'll check up on ya tommorow for the update
  16. mbl585

    mbl585 Founding Member

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    I cleaned all of the terminas (top and side posts) on the battery and cleaned the connectors free from corrosion and everything seems fine now! No problems at all. I drove it around and started it several times over the past couple days and no problems. Thanks guys for the help. I will however look at all of the wiring going to the solenoid and fusible links just to make sure I got the problem. Doesn't hurt checking. =)
  17. tvmango

    tvmango New Member

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    great!!!!!
  18. Black 93 Fox

    Black 93 Fox Active Member

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    Yeah thoes terminals can be a real pain. Glad you got her fixed tho. Just remeber next year when the cold weather starts back up to be ready for battery problems. Cold weather is he11 on batterys

    Black 93 Fox

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