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Sounds like you have a toasted battery or alternator. Have you performed a load test on the battery? Have you tried to charge the battery? First remove the battery and charge it externally from the vehicle. If the battery won't hold a charge, or won't hold a charge of 12 volts, replace it. Once you have the vehicle started, test the operation of the alternator. It should be putting out at least 13 volts back to the battery to keep it charged - if it is putting less than 13 volts or more than 16 volts, replace the alternator.
Check the battery cables, both ends for corrosion. clean or replace. The corrosion will travel up in the rubber coating of the wire. So if it looks like it is (usually will start to swell up) replace the cable. This is one reason for your problem. the other is the starter is just pulling to many amps. it needs replaced.
Hi your problem sounds like the battery is gone and won`t take a charge. When your engine is running the alternator is supplying the electrical power to run the car ( and normally charging the battery as well ) Even though it seems strange for the battery to go suddenly, it does happen. How old is the bat. Most last about 5 years with normal driving ( batterys last longer if the car is used every day ) Anyway i hope i have been of some help to you. John (south Wales UK )
Alternator is your likely problem. The wiring isn't bad in saturns, just need to replace the belts when needed. Your problem though is definitely that it just doesn't keep a charge, so your alternator is responsible for your dilemma.
It could be either. The alternator feeds electrical charge to the battery. Easiest way to tell is spend the 100 bucks and replace the battery. Even if your alternator is good, some batteries will not hold a charge even when boosted.
If that doesn't work try to get a used or rebuilt alternator.
Personally I would take it to a shop and have them check it first. You could have a solenoid issue and your battery and alternator are fine.
There could aslo be an electrical short in the wiring harness that is causing a draw on your battery.
It's a possible combination of both. A bad battery won't ever hold a charge and a drive of 30 miles should have charged the battery sufficiently to start the next day. Since the car would run once jumped, the alternator appears to be doing it's job but without having it tested (most auto parts chains will perform this test free of charge) it's impossible to tell whether it's putting out enough amperage to adequately to charge the battery.
once the car is started it runs off the alternator .. so even if your battery is bad the alternator will still run the car .. so it looks lilke your alternator is bad .. when you jumped the car you charged the battery a little but not enough to keep it going since the alternator is not charging . if you hook up a charger overnight then you might be able to run it long enough to get somewhere (garage) .. try to drive when you dont need lights .. those will run down the battery in a short time .. if you have a volt meter then the battery should read about 13.8 to 14.2 volts when the alternator is working properly (car running) .. if it reads lower (like 12volts or less) then the alternator is not charging .. some auto parts stores will test your system free ..