Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car is not starting and new battery didn't work

asked by on

I usually handle car maintenance but I am working out of the country right now, so my wife has to do it instead. Our car has never given us any problems. My wife thinks that she left something on in the car one night cause when she came back out, it was dead. She tried to jump start it, but it didn't work. I thought maybe she had it hooked up wrong, so we did a video chat and I walked her through it.

The car did nothing when not hooked up; no lights on the dash, nothing. The dash does not light up when they key is inserted. When she jumped it with her car and let it charge for a while, she could get the instrument panel to light up, but when she tried to crank, it was just a soft clicking sound. When she took the jumper cables off, it went right back to being dead. She took the battery from the car to Auto Zone and they said it was fully charged. So, she picked up a new battery and installed it, and it still didn't work. We did discover that if she hooks up her car positive to positive and negative to negative, she gets nothing. But, if she grounds the negative lead to the engine block she can get the lights and dash to come on.

A: Hello. It sounds like the battery fuse may ...

Hello. It sounds like the battery fuse may have blown out. The battery fuse is a high amp fuse that can range from 80-amps to 120-amps, and is bolted to the fuse box. It also sounds like there may be a short to ground from the battery or starter. My suggestion would be to have a certified technician, like one from YourMechanic, come to your home or place of business to inspect your battery and charging system.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 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

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: Display shows "Service AdvanceTrac", what does that mean?

AdvanceTrac is the traction control system that is used in Ford vehicles. Your car is equipped with wheel speed sensors at each of the four wheels which monitor wheel speed while relaying this information to the traction control system, which...

Q: Front end shaking.

The speed and conditions where the shaking occurs is the key to diagnosing this issue. For instance if the vibration starts occurring around 55 MPH and subsides after 65-70MPH this could be an indication of a tire/tires that are out...

Q: Car won't start occasionally

Hello. It sounds like there may be an intermittent problem with the starter. A solenoid is located on the starter and it is possible that there is a bad spot on the solenoid that is preventing the car from starting...

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
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.