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Old August 31st, 2014, 09:12 PM   #1
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06 2.4L Electrical Problem

So I went into AutoZone to do change up my battery. Swapped it, and the car was simply dead. There are no lights, no ignition, if i turn the key no noises are made none of the dashboard lights up, nothing. The battery is brand new and has 12.5V. I checked the battery and ignition fuses along with the rest of the fuses. I checked the battery ground, engine ground and connections to the positive battery terminal, everything is ok.

This is where it gets bizarre. If I disconnect everything and leave it disconnected for around 30-40 minutes, sometimes I will have ignition again and all the lights on the dash will function, when I try to actually start the car, it clicks once and then everything dies again. If I leave the battery connected the car just stays dead indefinitely. I had a mechanic check it out before he closed down and he has no idea thus far, went through and checked most of the connections. I have a sound system, but for trying to get the car to start I completely disconnected anything extra.

On top of this, sometimes when I drive, the voltage sometimes goes down below 12V and the dash flickers, all the gauges go down to zero and comes right back up and I can keep on driving, but there is no consistency, sometimes it happens when I brake, sometimes on acceleration, sometimes just while driving at 30mph or 50mph. There doesn't seem to be a pattern of any sorts.

This happened before in the winter time when i was still in Chicago and it was -20 degrees outside, so I was convinced it was the cold. The same thing happened as it did today, but the car decided to just startup again after a few hours and it hasn't happened again until now. Now I am in the bay area in California, so weather doesn't seem like it would be an issue.

My car will be getting a thorough looking through on Tuesday, but until then does anyone have any ideas at all?

And just for fun, here it is being towed:
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Old August 31st, 2014, 09:48 PM   #2
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alternator, relay, or dead ecu would be my guess.
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Old August 31st, 2014, 09:56 PM   #3
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If it was the alternator, wouldn't I still get power to interior lights?

Also, how would I test the relays without any power to the vehicle? Just get new ones and replace?

Is there a relay that could possibly cause this?

Also, when I touch the negative terminal to the battery, no spark happens, so the circuit isn't completing it seems. It does spark, when I get interior power, but as stated before, it dies when I try to start it.
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Old September 1st, 2014, 11:10 AM   #4
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So I went and put a bigger screw into the engine ground, wiped the dielectric grease off of everything, and checked my connections in the back of the fuse box. It started right up. I'll let you guys ponder what it could have been.
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