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Old 03-26-2014, 09:50 PM   #1
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98 mustang won't start with new battery

I have a 98 mustang that just stopped starting last night. Nothing would work no lights no controls nothing... I jumped it this morning on a battery cable pack and it started. I took it to the shop and bought a brand new battery, brought it home and hours later went back and it wouldn't crank again but atleast made a sound... Any ideas on what the problem is or what I should do next????
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Old 03-26-2014, 09:57 PM   #2
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some things draining the battery.. maybe the alternator isn't working properly or u have a short somewhere
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Old 03-26-2014, 10:06 PM   #3
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How can I trouble shoot to see if it is a fuse?
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Old 03-26-2014, 10:07 PM   #4
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Nothing works in the car...no lights controls or anything and there is a brand new battery in it now so what should I do next or look for next that is the prpblem
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:03 PM   #5
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Do you have an aftermarket sound system?
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:09 PM   #6
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I bought a new headunit and speakers like 8 months ago...
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:31 PM   #7
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open the hood and check to see if the connections on the battery are tight
if they are get a boost..
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:33 PM   #8
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if it starts up and dies later and wont start again then I would say your alternator is done.. probably start rite up with a boost. next time shut your lights off
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:37 PM   #9
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How much does an alternater run

---------- Post added at 04:37 AM ---------- Previous post was at 04:37 AM ----------

I didn't leave anything on it just randomly happened
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:39 PM   #10
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like 60 bucks. 2 minute job on these cars... easy... don't pay anyone to change it lol ... but get a boost and see what happens.
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:44 PM   #11
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I boosted it this morning and it cranked right up.. Drove around and it just went back to the same issue... No crank no lights no electronic anything.. So your saying I should buy the alternater myself and do what? I know I can't change it I don't have a clue what to do lol
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:47 PM   #12
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sure. open the hood its the first thing ull see. very simple to change. u need a socket set and about 10 minutes
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Old 03-27-2014, 07:44 AM   #13
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Pull your alternator and take it autozone or somewhere that will bench test it for free. Alt on these cars is the first thing you see when you open up the car. Just press down on the tensioner to release tension, remove the belt and then there are two bolts that hold the alternator to the block behind the water pump pully. All you have to do is loosen those, not remove them, and the alternator will lift right out. Obviously disconnect the negative battery cable and unhook the power cables/plugs going to the top of the alt first.
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Old 03-27-2014, 08:31 AM   #14
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The shop said they tested it yesterday when they put the new battery in as said the alternater tested fine so now what?
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Old 03-27-2014, 08:41 AM   #15
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Then you have a short somewhere that is draining your battery when the car is off. Check all your grounds and go from there. The main ground on these cars is from the driver's motor mount to the frame and it has a bad habit of corroding all to hell.
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Old 03-28-2014, 09:53 AM   #16
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How to test if your alternator is bad. Loosen and take of negative cable to battery off then put back on and tighten somewhat. Boost and start car. Carefully remove negative cable while car is running. Did the car stay running? Can you have a buddy turn the lights on while you are still holding the negative cable in your hands removed from the battery? If the car stalls the alternator is not putting out.

Another test. Go to harbor freight and get on of those $3.95 red voltmeters with the red and black probes. . Measure the charge on the battery while the car is off. What is it? 12 volts or less. 13.5 or more?
Just start the car, remove jumpers and measure the battery, what is the voltage now? 14volts + See that pattern here. A charged battery is less than 13.8 volts, but while charging you should see closer to 14.1 or more.

If you cannot do those tests yourself, you will need a a shop to diagnose your car, electrical work can be very complex if your don't understand it.
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Old 03-28-2014, 10:12 AM   #17
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He said he already had it bench checked. Its likely a draw somewhere from a crudded up ground or crossed/chaffed wire or something.
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Old 03-28-2014, 12:44 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottydsntknow View Post
He said he already had it bench checked. Its likely a draw somewhere from a crudded up ground or crossed/chaffed wire or something.
He said the shop checked it when he got a battery, I used to work in one when I was 17, you cant always trust the test was good. In fact most are just a dumb go-no-go box put on the battery. The tests above will verify exactly if its a charging issue or a draining issue. Charging issues can be caused by things other than the alternator.

If both of those tests go OK, then likely something is draining the battery FAST. If something that is draining the battery that fast, I would remove the fuse from the last aftermarket device put in (radio?) and see if the drain stops.

My bet is those tests wont go OK, and then its between the battery to the alternator. Alternator, wires, something else I would need to see the wiring schematic online someplace.

Quote:
a draw somewhere from a crudded up ground or crossed/chaffed wire or something.
A bad ground could prevent charging, not cause a drain on the battery while its sitting. Same with the cruded up wire, failure to charge rather than a drain while not running. This is likely what you meant but I wanted the electrical theory to be stated correctly while trying to show electrical tests.

A crossed wire with failed insulation could cause a short, shorts that drain fast are going to blow a fuse or burn up the wire. Good time to open the page that shows where the fuse boxes are in the model car this is and check the fuses with the ->- diode symbol on the $3.95 Red Harbor Freight Digital Multimeter (or other one that the OP might have or get get cheap)
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