Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: My car battery will not hold a charge

asked by on

It started one day while driving, my battery light started to flicker in a very irregular way, shortly after the cars engine began to lose power and the accessories started to dim and stop working. Eventually the engine lost all power despite the car still being on. When I pulled over and shut the car off it would not restart and neither would any accessories. After getting the car jumped it very weakly got me home. I replaced the battery and the car seemed to run fine for a few days and then the problem reoccurred. I then replaced the alternator and jumped the battery, the car started and idled but at times the accessory lights would flicker and when I turned the headlights on it killed the car instantly, as if the key was turned to off. I am not sure where to check next, could bad terminals cause this issue?

My car has 210000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello. This is likely related to a charging system problem. Since you have replaced the battery and the alternator, I would suggest checking the voltage regulator, which is a unit that monitors the voltage that the alternator provides to the battery when it is charging it. When this is not working properly, this can cause the battery to not charge at all or to be overcharged. Also, check the ground wire (black battery cable) opposite to the battery to be sure it is properly connected to the chassis of the vehicle. If you need any help, a technician from YourMechanic can come to your home or office and inspect why your battery will not hold a charge.

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: Car slightly shutters when coming to an abrupt stop. Failing master cylinder?

If you are getting a pulsation in the brakes and do not have an ABS or any light on in the dash then this is most likely caused by the front rotors of the brakes are warped. You should have...

Q: Rear power sliding door, 2005 Buick Terraza

The close operation for the door is dependent on the door not being blocked in some way or binding that will cause the motor to reverse. This is a safety feature. The first thing to do is open the door...

Q: Tach not working

Hi there. There are a few reasons why your tachometer is not working on your Dart. The tachometer on the instrument cluster may be bad, and the instrument cluster may need to be replaced. There also could be a problem...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
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...