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Tool Hut
Tool Hut, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Mazda
Satisfied Customers: 515
Experience:  Owner of a mobile diagnostics company assisting auto technicians with difficult vehicles
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2002 tribute. Battery keeps dying, it is 2 weeks old. No

Customer Question

2002 tribute. Battery keeps dying, it is 2 weeks old. No battery light though and can't drive it anywhere to have alternator tested. Should I replace alternator?
JA: Have you tested the battery? Have you tried testing the alternator?
Customer: I tested the old battery and it was bad, the battery in it now is brand new
JA: Are you hoping to fix this yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: Yes hoping to fix it myself to avoid expensive labor fees, I haven't had the alternator tested. I replaced the battery exactly two weeks ago. The alternator is not new and I don't know if it has ever been replaced as I bought the vehicle used about 8 months ago. The battery seemed to fix the problem for two weeks and then with no warning I started it and drove less than a quarter of a mile and it cut off while moving no lights were on
JA: Anything else you think the mechanic should know?
Customer: The battery light works because it comes on when the key is turned on, however it has never came on with the vehicle running. I plan on checking the ground cable
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Mazda
Expert:  Tool Hut replied 7 months ago.

Hi, My Name is ***** ***** for posting your question to just answer. I am a independent contractor for just answer, and ASE Certified Master Auto Technician with 20 years experience. I am confident we can resolve your problem together.Please remember I don't know your skill level. I can't see, smell, hear, or touch the vehicle. It may take a few back and forth replies to get to a satisfactory resolution.There will probably be some equipment needed for a proper diagnosis. If you are not comfortable with this or do not have any test equipment please let me know ASAP. I also try to give all of the information you may need expecting a positive rating. I am not compensated for my time until you leave a positive rating. Your rating should be based on the service you received.

Do you have a volt meter?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
No volt meter, going to see if I can rent one from a chain parts store.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
The battery in the vehicle is 13 days old, the vehicle gets driven every day. If the alternator isn't charging at all would the battery have lasted that long ?
Expert:  Tool Hut replied 7 months ago.

What is the condition of your battery terminal ends? Did you replace or clean them before installing new battery? Why did you replace the battery? It is possible you got a bad battery and It is possible your alternator has been failing a while. I would suggest getting it started and check the voltage.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
The terminals and the cable ends are in good shape and clean no corrosion or build up on them at all. I replaced the battery because i had the old one tested and according to the guy at advanced auto parts that tested it it wasn't completely bad but the amperage was low enough that it should be replaced. I will get the alternator voltage tested, when I jump start the vehicle it will not stay running without keeping the jumper cables hooked up. As soon as I unhook them within a few seconds it dies again.Is it possible the voltage regulator is bad and charging at too high of a voltage and ruining the batteries? According to the guy at the auto parts that sold me the battery it is.....
Expert:  Tool Hut replied 7 months ago.

It is. I would suggest charging the battery, not jumping the car. Let battery charge until fully charged and check alternator with fully charged battery

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
This is kind of hard to explain but the vehicle is acting like the key is on without the key even in the ignition switch. And when I turn the key on to put it in neutral so I can push it I can't get the gear shifter out of park
Expert:  Tool Hut replied 7 months ago.

IT sounds like your BCM may have failed. DO you have a scan tool with DATA?

Expert:  Tool Hut replied 7 months ago.

Hello, I have not heard from you in a few days. Do you still need assistance? I also noticed you haven't left a rating. I have assisted in good faith and am only compensated when you leave a positive rating. Please let me know if there is anything else you need to leave a positive rating. Conversations can always continue after a rating is received.

Expert:  Tool Hut replied 7 months ago.

Hello, I have not heard from you in a few days. Do you still need assistance? I also noticed you haven't left a rating. I have assisted in good faith and am only compensated when you leave a positive rating. Please let me know if there is anything else you need to leave a positive rating. Conversations can always continue after a rating is received.