Never had this happen before

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My tercel:: 87 tercel 4x4 wagon w/reringed engine, 83 tercel 4x4 wagon w/salvaged engine and 4.1 Diff's
Location: seabeck, washington, USA

Never had this happen before

Post by xirdneh » Sun May 24, 2020 12:11 am

drove 84 miles non-stop.
stopped and parked car for an hour
started car and drove it 2 miles and stopped for 10 minutes
started car and drove 1 mile and stopped for 30 minutes
tried starting car and starter did not do anything
the only thing that worked when i turned the key was the radiator fan
no radio, no headlights, no nothing
i messed with the battery terminals and tried starting again
this time nothing happened and the radiator fan was not running either
but this time the cabin blower (fan) came on for about ten seconds then shut off
i borrowed a good battery, swapped it out and the car started and everything worked
I bought a new battery and drove home
the next morning i checked the alternator output and it was good. figured it was because none of the usual warning lights ever came on on the dashboard console
i also put the old battery on the charger all night.
it registers as charged up and cheap battery tester says its good but i plan to let it sit for a few days to see if it holds a charge.
Love those Tercell 4x4 wagons but they sure suffer from road noise.

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Re: Never had this happen before

Post by NWMO » Sun May 24, 2020 10:03 am


The electrical issues aren’t always as intuitive as nuts/bolts/gears. I gave up trying to figure out every electrical gremlin.

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T4WD augury?
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My tercel:: '86 SR5 4WD, 5AFE, lifted rear, 195/70/14 tires
Location: Seattle, WA

Re: Never had this happen before

Post by teranfirbt » Sun May 24, 2020 7:05 pm

I usually find that weird problems like this come down to dirty or loose connections. My dad had a Talon that alternated between eating alternators and eating batteries, turned out the ground between the battery and and the chassis was just loose enough to cause an intermittent connection.

First step on something like this is to make sure all of your big connections are clean, tight, and high quality. Sometimes the ground straps are old and corroded and need to be replaced.

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