Question about 2001 Chevrolet Cavalier

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My battery keeps dying but my alternator is fine

My Battery is brand new and is fine, my connections are not corroded, and I checked my alternator by jump starting it and disconnecting the negative terminal on the battery and the car kept running. I can jump my car and leave it running for about an hour and then when I go to start it the next day it will start, but if I miss starting it just one day it will not start the next day. When it won't start my battery is dead because none of my lights will work or anything else. I don't know whats wrong.

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First, DON"T check your alternator that way anymore. It's not good to do on newer systems! The best, quickest check I can tell you is to put a volt meter across the battery. Running with accessories off you should see voltage of about 13.5 to 14.5.
With all accessories and headlamps on high turned on, it should not drop below 12.5. (and that is the absolute low end!).
It sounds like something in the car is staying on. check the glovebox light and interior light delay and make sure they are OK. Otherwise, you will have to start checking entire system for a draw that's taking out the battery overnight. To check, you can pull one fuse at a time and see if draw goes away, then check system that fuse serves.

Posted on Jan 07, 2009

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I had this same exact problem with a Chevy Celebrity. Come to find out the in dash car lighter was not popping all the way out when I would use it, so it would slowly drain the battery all night

Posted on Jun 07, 2013


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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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SOURCE: 2001 Mazda MPV, have replaced

Removing either battery cable, thereby taking the battery out of the circuit, with the engine running can cause the alternator to charge full tilt and destroy sensitive micro volt (computer controlled) components; and I've seen wiring harnesses go up in flame from it. You may have a module problem.

Posted on Jun 18, 2011

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SOURCE: need to figure out why car starts intermittently.

I had the same problem with a Tercel, it was the distributor cap had a non-visible hairline crack in it and allowed moisture in.... does it do this only when it rains or high humidity?

Posted on Aug 17, 2009

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1 Answer

My car keeps surging wanting to die after it starts up

Common Problems That Trigger the P052 Code
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Check the condition of your battery cables - are they corroded/have broken wire strands? Also check where the negative battery lead attaches to the engine/bodywork.

Check all the wiring for breaks and tightness - a small earth wire can be loosened and retightened to create a better earth. Corroded power wires can struggle to supply the correct voltage - remove and clean whatever you can find.

It's unlikely to be your alternator as you say it has been checked - the voltage regulator is built into the alternator so it must be okay.

A parasitic drain can be difficult to find. Try switching off everything - radio, heater ... the next time you start the car. If you know somebody who has a voltmeter and knows how to check for a power drain .. ask them.

The link below shows a Saturn PCM (it may not be your actual model..). Check all wiring around the PCM

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Could be an open connection in the line feeding the battery. Is there a fusible link inline? If so check the fuse or the line itself. Run on Ohm test from alternator to battery; this will tell you if the circuit is good. Sometimes it's as simple as a corroded or loose connection.

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Battery wont stay charged

The voltage regulator is, I believe, built in to the alternator on your escort-some cars have them in a different location. So, although the alternator has checked out as working, was the voltage regulator function checked? Another possibility would be loose or corroded connections, most commonly at the battery, but also at any wires that connect to the alternator. I just had a problem w/ my Ford pickup-good battery and alternator, then I found a plug in wire on the alternator has a gasket to seal out grime and dirt, it was torn and the connection was badly corroded at all the contacts. Cleaned up the connection, and everything is fine. Hopefully it's as cheap and easy to fix as mine was. Let me know how u make out. Good luck.

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