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1998 Durango 5.2l v8 won't start but battery good?

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Old 08-16-2010, 11:39 PM
hairyone hairyone is offline
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Default 1998 Durango 5.2l v8 won't start but battery good?

This one is a puzzler...

On a few occasions now my wife's Durango would not start. On both occasions a jump start got it going again.

On the first occasion I checked the car in the garage, the battery voltage was 12.6. But none of the gauges or idiot lights came on when the key was turned. There were no relays on solenoids clicking. Nothing the car behaved as if there were no battery, tried the interior lights and headlights ... nada.

Switched the battery charger to its 225Amp jump start setting and it the gauges came on , the lights lit and the car started. Left the battery on trickle charge for 90 mins at 2Amps and the car started and ran fine for the next five days.

Second time, was exactly as before the car was jump started and we got it home.

Again checked the battery voltage and it was 12.6, turned the key without trying to crank it, and noticed that in the second position the battery voltage dropped to about 3.5V so no wonder nothing was happening. Switched off and back to 12.6 again. Once again no headlights.

Decided to take the battery out to inspect it, wiped it over checked fluid levels, everything as good. Put it back in and this time the gauges came on and the lights lit up and the car started.

All of which makes me think the battery is fine. Any ideas? All I can think of i that there is some sticky relay or solenoid, but could this cause the voltage to drop to 3.5, I don't think so. Could there be bits of plate on the bottom of the battery causing an internal short, that resolved itself when the battery was lifted out.

Any ideas

Thanks in advance
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Old 08-17-2010, 07:29 AM
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shrpshtr325 shrpshtr325 is offline
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if it were me i would just replace the battery, idk how old it is, but the avg life in these trucks is 4 years, so if its over 3 just replace it and dont think about it, but it does sound to me like something is wrong internally with the battery
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:47 AM
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Thanks shrpshtr325,

Usually that's what I would do, but there's something odd about this. Went into Batteries Plus this morning and they put the battery on a tester and the battery is rated at 850 CCA and he showed me that it could maintain 900CCA with little voltage drop.

I was hoping someone might know if there's a relay that would cause the dashboard and gauges to get no power. I don't think it could be a bad ignition switch because the headlights and dome light wouldn't switch on either and they don't go through the ignition.

I will probably still buy a new battery today (it seems illogical but if I don't my wife will still think it is the battery next time she is stranded.
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:09 AM
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2 things

1. Your battery IS stating that it is completely full and good by voltage, but what about under load? You stated that the Battery dropped to 3.5 volts! Now that is your main problem! Sounds like you have a loose cell grounding causing the issue. Take your truck to a Auto Zone or other and they can do a load test of the battery right in your truck and you don't even need to take it out! Also the test is free. If it is bad let me sugest a Duralast Gold Series Battery from Auto Zone.

2. It could just be a bad connection! Get a $2 battery brush/post cleaner tool and clean the crap out of them and reassemble, and while your there again have it load tested.


EDIT.......Should have hit reload before posting........LOL
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hairyone View Post
Thanks shrpshtr325,

Usually that's what I would do, but there's something odd about this. Went into Batteries Plus this morning and they put the battery on a tester and the battery is rated at 850 CCA and he showed me that it could maintain 900CCA with little voltage drop.

I was hoping someone might know if there's a relay that would cause the dashboard and gauges to get no power. I don't think it could be a bad ignition switch because the headlights and dome light wouldn't switch on either and they don't go through the ignition.

I will probably still buy a new battery today (it seems illogical but if I don't my wife will still think it is the battery next time she is stranded.
There is a Ignition Switch relay in the PDC you can swap out with a different relay. It should be the lower left Relay in the PDC (closest to the fender).

But I have seen this before with just a bad battery or bad connections.
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Old 08-17-2010, 02:39 PM
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i agree with hydra that one of the cells is acting up, and somehow that is knocking the battery down to only 2 cells in line (3.x volts = 2 cells @ about 1.5 -2.0v each)

we just put a brand new battery in my sisters car on friday, went to start it sat and it turned over VERY weakly (took 4 times as long as it should to start) the first time we started it, but was fine after running for a little bit, so we got out the hydrometer and checked the battery, yup bad cell, fortunately we got a new one with now trouble, (except having to pull two batteries in 3 bays out of a freaking VW bug)

moral of this story is if the battery is acting up, even if it isnt consistently, blame the battery
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Old 08-17-2010, 03:33 PM
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Thanks Guys,


Gonna swap the battery with a known good one from a Sprinter van tonight, will let you know how I get on.
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Old 09-15-2011, 09:04 PM
NoFearKanobi NoFearKanobi is offline
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Hello, new here! My 1998 Durango will not start. Battery is good, less than 1 year. All I hear is click, but will not complete engine turn. Please help!
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Old 09-15-2011, 09:15 PM
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Check your connections, clean the terminals, also have the battery load tested, I believe that autozone will do this for free. Batteries can go bad whenever they want to.
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Old 09-15-2011, 10:17 PM
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definitely have the battery load tested, check the relay, climb underneath the truck and tap the starter with a hammer (do this lightly) if that fixes it the starter solenoid is gone, the starter and solenoid are one unit and must be replaced together
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Old 09-15-2011, 10:17 PM
 
 
 
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