Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: I went out of town and trunk wasn't shut, so battery was dead and had to jump it.

asked by on

Trunk wasn't shut for 4 days and the car was completely dead. Jumped it very easily and ran errands for a couple hours without turning it off. Then I turned it off and went to start it 30 minutes later and it wouldn't start. Lights came on but didn't turn over. Jumped it again and drove it to O'Reilly's to test battery. They said couldn't get a reading on battery so it meant alternator was draining it because alternator was going out. Drove it home and turned it off and then restarted fine. Do you think alternator is going out?

My car has 50000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hello, thanks for writing in. If the vehi...

Hello, thanks for writing in.

If the vehicle started back up then it is not likely that the alternator is bad. If the alternator was bad, the battery would have been low and you would not have been able to restart the vehicle later on. It may be possible that after driving it around for an entire day, the battery is now charged enough to properly start the vehicle again. However, if the issues persist, I recommend having the battery and alternator tested by another place.

If you would like inspection help, consider having an expert automotive technician from YourMechanic come to your home or office to diagnose this issue for you and make any repairs as needed.

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

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!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: My car won't start.

There are a few things to check before this diagnosis can be done. The engine will need to be checked for fuel pressure and spark. Once this is done, a the computer needs to be scanned for any trouble codes....

Q: Headlight stopped working

Hi there. Sounds to me that you have a power to ground short somewhere in your headlight wiring. Have a certified mechanic further diagnose your headlight issue in person.

Q: Water getting into car

Hello. During it's operation, the air conditioning system will come across a large amount of condensation. This condensation gathers around the evaporator and runs off through a drain. You may see water dripping from the car on a hot summer...

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...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...