Question about 2006 Toyota RAV4

3 Answers

Weak battery; can we replace with any battery ourselves?

In a regular service, we were told that our RAV4 has a weak battery and soon should be replaced. Never having had a Toyota before, we weren't sure whether we could buy any battery and attempt to replace it ourselves. Can we?

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  • dcfran50 May 24, 2009

    We were concerned, too, about why the battery was considered "weak" before it's time. Could be a couple of things, it had died once because of lights left on, it also could be that this particular shop alerts you to problems way before their time, and sometimes unnecessarily. I will not replace until we check the charging system and battery at another shop. Thanks.

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  • Master
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Yes but I'd be more interested in why the battery is "weak" after only 3 years. Do yourself a favor, go to an independant repair shop or auto parts dealer, most will check your charging system free of charge (you can call first to verify). If the charging system checks out (they will usually do a battery check too). and the battery checks out, you don't need a battery.
Finally, if you do decide to buy a new battery, any auto parts dealer or some tire dealers will have a battery to fit your Rav 4. Hope this lengthy reply (LOL) answers your question. It's a good thing to do your homework like you've just done so pat yourself on the back for me! Best of luck.
Greg

Posted on May 24, 2009

  • Greg Margossian
    Greg Margossian May 24, 2009

    Not knowing the shop you have service performed at I won't cast aspersions as to whether they were looking out for you or simply looking to sell you an expensive battery so yes, do have your charging system checked out. Leaving the lights on and coming out to find the battery dead is something we've all done but a good battery will quickly recharge soon after a jump start. With sealed batteries (almost every car has a sealed battery/no maintenance) the best way to truly check a batteries effectiveness is to pry off the caps and do a cell check. If you are not experiencing hard starting or trouble with your accesories, I'm at a loss as to why your battery would be weak after such a short period of time. You're doing the right thing by checking out the car elsewhere for a second opinion. Please rate the solution I've provided should you find it solved your problem. Thank you very much and All the best!

    Greg

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Sure you can, just be sure it's size recommended for your vehicle, as in dimensions, & terminal hook-ups, so it will fit back in where it belongs, CCA ratings are same, or higher.( Cold Cranking Amps) Your old battery should have those numbers on it, so you can match it up, or as I said, go higher, never lower. Basically the CCA rating is how strong the battery will be for cranking your engine over , and if you go lower, it may turn over slow, wear out too soon, and leave you stranded. Any place that sells batteries should have a chart that says what battery size & CCA is recommended for your vehicle. Clean all your connections good, tighten them down, and coat with terminal spray, or even wipe them with a coat of "vaseline" if nothing else available. Just be sure you put positive (+) back on positive (+) of battery, and (-)negative,back on (-) negative. Remove negative (-) first off old battery, and put negative (-) on last on new battery.

Posted on May 24, 2009

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  • Toyota Master
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Yes...buy a battery that has the same or better cca rating as yours does (usually shown on a sticker on the battery) Pay attention to the battery post position and dimensions. Most outlets have a chart of what fits what...a small dimensional change will usually fit but you can't go too far from what you have without running into install problems.

Posted on May 24, 2009

  • Richard Scordino May 24, 2009

    If you ran the battery down and never re-charged it with a battery charger, it will come up on a test as a low battery...Your alternator, unlike the old style generators will never fully re-charge a battery...it is designed to maintain the present charge only...it will put a "surface charge" there, which leads you to believe that everything is OK, but it's not. This can also shorten the life of the battery.Since you said that you did have a problem where you needed a jump, this may be the cause. Re-charge the battery and have it load tested. Possibly it will read better during the test. If not, go ahead and replace it.

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