'88 Ford Tempo giving me trouble starting

Let me preface this with I know next to nothing about cars. About 3-4 weeks ago I had to have the alternator changed on my car. It was toast. Today I had
to get my car jumped to start. Couple of weeks ago when I went out to start the car it took forever to start. I could hear it trying and then suddenly it roared into life. I've always had to hold the key all the way turned for a little longer than usual to get it to catch except when I got the new alternator. Today when it I first tried to get it to go it started the same way it did 2 weeks ago but then just died. Didn't even catch this time. There was absolutely no problem when my neighbor jumped it. So is this the battery now? I know the alternator is new. I usually take my car out about once a week for errands and thats about it. Any help would be appreciated before I have to pay my mechanic for something new LOL Thanks.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Sorren wrote:

How do you know the alt. was toast, is that what your mechanic said? You probably have a parasitic drain on the battery. This would be a courtesy light, radio or door switch or some other small electrical switch staying on. Could be a lighted mirror in the visor or glove box switch. Given that you only start the car once a week a parasitic drain would leave the battery too low to work the starter. If you started it every day and ran it for a few minutes you'd charge the battery up some and it might not be so bad when you needed it.
Hook up an ammeter in series with the battery ground and frame and see what reading you get in milliamps, should be about or under 100, because the clock/radio does draw some power to keep the memory alive. If you get more than that start pulling fuses to see which circuit is causing the drain. Probably a door switch or courtesy lamp.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

When I brought the car in I watched while they worked. The wiring was fried he used a machine to check the volts (not sure what it's called) and it was way below 14. I knew it was going as the sounds coming from it were loud and bad. The belt was chewed to within a centimeter or it's life and Yes my mechanic said it was done. LOL

It a very old car. There isn't many lights or switches that work on it anymore. Haven't worked since I got it. But I can take it for a ride around the neighborhood daily to see if it's just because I am not using it enough.

Oh that's the other thing my damn radio was at 6am and my stations were gone again like when I've had to unhook the battery for other repairs and then re- hooked it up. That's what made me think it was the battery in the first place. Thanks!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.