Question about 1997 Ford Escort

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I have a 97 escort, it has been sitting for a while so when i went to start it, no battery charge. Once i boosted it, it ran no problem, if you turn car off and try to start again, no charge. I left charge on for 1/2 hour, then drove away, a minute later car completely dies, boost it again ..repeat (seemed the slower i was going the longer the car would run..) The levels are good, and the car stays running once you boost it. HELP!

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Check your charging system. With the engine running at about 2000 rpm, a volt meter across the battery terminals should read around 14 to 14.5 volts and drop to about 13.8 volts with the engine at idle. If this does not happen, the charging system may be defective. Even with lights on the voltage should climb, but will drop lower at idle. If the dash lights just about go out when you try start, a good indication that the battery charge is low too. The battery could be getting charged but due to internal sediment or buckled plates, may be loosing the charge. This would require a battery replacement, but check the charge system first. Please rate this solution.

Posted on May 22, 2011

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The first thing to do would be to put the battery on a slow or trickle charge for about 24 hours. It may be worn down enough from sitting that it needs to be revitalized. This should do it if the battery is still good. While it is charging, clean up all your cable ends and terminals to bare shiny metal. Do the battery, starter and alternator and the grounds in the engine compartment. Once the battery is charged up try it again. If the car will only start once or try to start once and need to be boosted, you will need a new battery. If it starts and runs repeatedly, then get the output checked on the alternator. A new one should charge at 14-14.5 volts but as long as it shows better than 12 volts it should be okay. Also when you are testing it, turn all your accesories on, radio, heater, A/C operate power accessories and watch to see how the alternator handles the load. The needle on your meter will bounce a little but should come back to where it was. If it doesn't then you will need to replace it as well. Hope this helps.

Posted on May 22, 2011

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