Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Is my alternator bad or my cables?

asked by on

The car will not keep a charge and will not start. I have replaced the battery and the starter. If I connect my battery charger to it, the lights come on , but no start. Once I take the charger off, nothing in the car works, not even the lights.

My car has 19500 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hello. If the vehicle is only working when ...

Hello. If the vehicle is only working when the charger is installed then there is high resistance in the vehicles electrical system. Most of the time it is caused by a bad positive battery cable. I usually do a voltage drop test of the positive and negative battery cables to make sure that they are fine. If they are then I test the resistance going to the fuse box as high resistance in that circuit will cause this also. If you are planning on having this no electrical power problem checked, consider YourMechanic, as a certified mechanic can come to your home or office to diagnose and repair this.

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・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Fuel rail injection pressure sensor

Hey there, thanks for writing in. It is in the top center of the motor on the fuel rail. You have to remove the upper intake manifold to get to it.

Q: transmission axle has play or movement.

Hi there. The axle play could be caused by the outer bearing on the transmission to be worn out. The bearing is inside the transmission, so to replace the bearing, the transmission will have to be removed from the vehicle...

Q: Check engine light came on, attached code reader on pickup code 0138, 0132, and 0420 came on

Hello. Typically when you get these codes together it is because the catalytic converter has failed. When it fails and clogs internally then these codes will come up. As for the no start, it may indeed be a starter or...

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...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...