Q: After sitting for months, jump-started battery

asked by on

"My pickup hasn’t been driven in several months (and I’m trying to sell it). The past month the battery was dead and I’ve jump-started it a couple of times and have let it charge for the past 2 weeks. It will start a couple of times, but if I’ve let it sit for more than overnight, it is completely dead. So much so that I have to unlock the door with the key and no lights turn on inside. When I try to start it, nothing at all happens. Almost like there’s no battery installed at all. Before all of this when it was a running pickup, there were several warning lights on that weren’t on when I’d stop driving, which were: ABS, two VSA lights, emergency brake (which I know was not engaged), and tire pressure. The battery and check engine lights are not on (which should be on). Also, after charging it and turning it off and on several times, I used the command start to try to turn it on in order to make sure that it was still working. It did work, so I turned it off and locked it up. Around 20 minutes later, the alarm went off and the only way to get it to stop was to disconnect the battery. I tried to reset the computer by disconnecting the battery for 15 minutes and then reconnecting it -- but no success. I have an appointment at the shop in a few days, but first I would like to know your diagnosis and what should be done?"

Hello. It sounds like the battery is not working properly and this may be the cause of your problem. Batteries have cells in them and these could go bad even with a charge to the battery. It sounds like the cells in your battery are not taking a charge and this is giving you the problem you are experiencing. I would recommend that you have a certified technician, like one from YourMechanic, replace the battery as well as complete an inspection of the charging system.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1,000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. After sitting for months, jump-started battery

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Door not locking or unlocking

The actuator is the most likely cause of the problem; if the actuator is bad, it may prevent the door from locking, or unlocking. I recommend that you have a mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, run an inspection to...

Q: Newly installed battery goes dead next day

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 1989 Dodge Ramcharger. There is the possibility of an electrical component malfunctioning and causing a parasitic drain while the vehicle is off, but a technician must perform the right tests to uncover...

Q: Battery & airbag lights come on and SUV won't start

If you said the Check Engine Light came on, I would recommend starting there. Have a qualified mechanic pull the codes from your Chevrolet Tracker using an OBD2 scanner. Any codes found will lead the mechanic in the right direction...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.