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Need jumped every time to start

 
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Old 15 May 2017, 10:40 am
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Default Need jumped every time to start

My PT cruiser has been sitting while I was away at college. I drove it around once or twice during the year but not very far. I had the battery replaced when I was home in March. Now that I am home for summer I have started driving again and every time I go to drive it it needs a jump. I have had it in at advance auto to have the battery, alternator, etc. tested. Everything came back good. I tried putting it on a battery charger for a few hours and that let me start it up the next morning but now I'm right back to having to jump it every time I go somewhere. The battery is brand new and everything else is good so I'm wondering if anyone could help me out and might know what the issue is. Thanks.
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Old 15 May 2017, 10:59 am
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Default Re: Need jumped every time to start

Welcome to the forum. You should post about your PT and yourself in the new members section. To give you the best help, we will need to know what year model and edition your PT is and how many miles are on it.

Also, is your check engine light on? And if so, have you had the trouble codes read? And is the the battery light on?
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Old 15 May 2017, 11:31 am
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Default Re: Need jumped every time to start

Its a 2001 limited edition with 80,000 miles. No check engine or battery light. Like I said, I had the battery and alternator tested and it came back good.
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Old 15 May 2017, 11:58 am
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Default Re: Need jumped every time to start

Based on what you've said, I'd start by checking two things.

If you have a multi-meter, check the voltage across the battery terminals with the engine running. It should be somewhere in the neighborhood of 14 volts. This will indicate if the alternator is changing at the rate it should be while on the car. I think mine runs around 13.75 volts.

If voltage is good, check for a parasitic draw. If you don't have a multi-meter with a loop, you may be able to do this on an early model PT by selecting amps on your multi-meter and putting it in series between the positive batter terminal and lead. Here's some simple instructions on how to do that:

How to Find a Parasitic Battery Drain: 9 Steps (with Pictures)

I've also found that the local Advance Auto has a pretty good diagnostic tool for this that they will use to test your car with for free. It pretty well does everything I've described automatically plus it load tests the battery as well.
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Old 15 May 2017, 12:06 pm
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Default Re: Need jumped every time to start

Good chance your Multi Function switch is going bad and your driving lights are coming on and draining the battery. $.02
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Old 15 May 2017, 12:37 pm
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Default Re: Need jumped every time to start

Welcome to the forum from Texas.

Did you have the starter tested? How about the connections at the battery?
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Old 15 May 2017, 12:52 pm
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Default Re: Need jumped every time to start

Modern cars always draw current. Even in the 60's and 70's you were supposed to start your car and take it for a drive every couple of weeks if it was otherwise idle.

Today's cars can run down a fully charged brand new battery in just a few weeks. When that happens it "deep cycles" which is ok on a marine battery, but not a car battery. You should either disconnect the battery when away at school or keep it hooked up to a "trickle" or "float" charger if kept in a garage or back yard, or you can remove the battery and hook it up to the float/trickle charger.

Do a search on "long term" or "short term" car storage and you can get some good advice. Keeping a battery attached to a car for long term without use is a good way to kill a battery.

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Old 16 May 2017, 12:19 pm
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Default Re: Need jumped every time to start

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeX View Post
Good chance your Multi Function switch is going bad and your driving lights are coming on and draining the battery. $.02
I had this same issue also.
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