Q: Vehicle won't start...one click.

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  1. One click no start. Old battery was depleted badly and would not charge/jump. Replaced the battery. Then it started and ran just fine.

  2. Next morning, one click no start again. Replaced the alternator. Recharged the new battery (which I found was still at 96% charge...so maybe the alternator wasn't bad, and it seems to rule out a current draw problem). Had some corrosion issues with the positive battery connector, so I cleaned it up. Ran fine again for the evening. Alternator was putting out 14.2 volts. Battery (after shutdown) was 12.9 volts. All good.

  3. This morning, one click no start again.

Not sure why this is happening intermittently like this. I think the battery connection may still be a problem. Not sure what else to try?

[2002 chevy venture, bought just before the cold weather as a winter beater]

Hi there. What seems to be happening is there is a parasitic load on the battery when the ignition key is off. What this means is that something is on when it should be off. To check this condition, first charge the battery to a full charge of 12.6 volts. Then start the engine and make sure that it runs. Then shut the engine off and disconnect the negative battery cable (-). Get a digital meter and put it on DC volts. Connect on lead on the negative battery cable and the other lead on the negative battery post. If the meter shows a voltage reference of 7 volts or higher, then there is a parasitic load (draw). Now with the meter still hooked up and on, turn on one thing at a time until the meter reads 0 or 0.5 volts. Then that component that was turned on needs replace or repaired. If you need further assistance with diagnosing your battery going dead overnight, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

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