2004 Century was totally dead after church, no crank, no horn. Made
sure it was in park. All I noticed with the key in ON position was the
indicator LED by the A/C button dimly lit.
Hooked jumpers onto it, let it sit like that less than a minute, tried
starting it and it popped right off.
Unhooked cables and drove it home, literally two blocks, shut it off
and tried starting it again, and it cranked right over like nothing was
What would have caused that? I suspected the battery at first since
it's an '04 and original battery, but it starts fine ever since.
Anything to do with that chip in the ign key?
Good chance it was a dirty connection. Putting the cables on it may
have been just enough to jiggle it for a better connection. Take the
cables off and clean them.
If the battery is truly eight years old, it is not going to last much
longer. I don't know what your driving conditions are, but I'd
probably replace it now rather than have to go dead in the middle of a
rain storm at night. It may last two more day, two more moths, two
more years. Do you want to take the chance? Comes down to how much
of a value you put on peace of mind. Even if you have AAA or other
road service, do you want to wait for the to show up?
Your message here.
Look for a bad connection. A standard car battery will not go from
completely dead to fully charged within 1 minute. How was it
determined that it was completely dead and fully charged?
It so happened that while the problem was present I couldn't get to my
voltmeter. So when I say it was "dead" and then "fully charged" I am
just going by what it acted like.
The car is driven by an 85 year old -- often only a couple of blocks,
literlly -- and looks new under the hood, including the battery. But I
will inspect the connections tomorrow. I hope I find that to be the
As far as replacing the battery due to its age, I agree with that
logic. We probably won't be as lucky as last time -- the original Delco
battery in her previous car ('93 Gran Prix) lasted 11 years (I know,
That infrequent use, very short trips are probably exactly what the
problem is. Battery never gets fully charged, so it spends much of its
life in a half-charged state. This is hard on the battery. Also battery
terminal corrosion often is not visible, especially with side terminal
Were this mine to repair, I'd put in a new battery, make 100% sure the
terminals were in perfect condition, make sure the battery (new one) was
fully charged and perhaps even consider a trickle charger to keep it
fully charged (they are not terribly expensive.)
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