Question about 1998 Honda Civic

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The battery ran down and I took it to an automotive shop and had it tested and all was OK, He thought it was the alternator and now it will not start at all. It turns over Ok, can not even jump it!

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Did you take both the vehicle and the battery to get tested separately? They usually do this at Autozone, Advance and chain auto parts stores for free as long as you ask them too.

Posted on Jun 20, 2009

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the best way to test an alternator is with a load test-partstores dont do that--battery may still have a bad cell even tho it tested good--an alternator can burn up charging a completely dead batt--make sure batt reads at 12.6volts and no less-----if it reads say at 12.3 its only 50% charged!

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Auto Zone does not test the alternator under full load so the test result could be borderline.
start the car and turn everything on. If the voltage drops lower than 14.2
replace the alternator.
also the battery could be being drained overnight. to check use a test light by removing a battery terminal and connecting light between battery and cable with car off.
if it lights start be removing fuses.
when the light goes off the problem is with this circuit.
lastly if the light stays on take the wires off the alternator.
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check the connection on your battery terminal ends. if they are loose or corroded that could explain the intermittent no spark. also could be a short somewhere but id check the terminals first. I had that problem once and the car did all sorts of weird things. airbag light, check engine light, randomly wouldnt start until i would mess with the battery.

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Alternator ? Charging system problem ? Do you know how to do automotive electrical testing ? Because that is what it's going to take to find the problem ! Your best bet take it to a qualified repair shop ! Or learn how to do electrical trouble shooting ! Do you know what a wiring diagram is ? how to use one to find point's in a electrical circuit to test at ?
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When your battery light comes on it is telling you that your ALTERNATOR is not charging your battery! So you need to replace the alternator.

You can verify that it is bad by taking the car or just the alternator to an auto parts store and having them test it for you for free.

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to me it sounds like the alternator is intermittenly cutting out and when they cut out they can do some wierd stuff i'd recommend you letting an automotive electrical shop look at the alternator and test it

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I had a simular problem, and I have worked on cars for 37 years.
In my case it was the ecm. I tested and tested, come to find out, at higher rpm's, (when car is being driven), the ecm caused the voltage regulator to stay in a high charge situation, which burnt up the alternator, changed it, and was fine.
I'm not saying it will work in your case, but you tried everything else.

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