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Thread: Average lifespan for battery in adapted minivan?

  1. #11
    Senior Member brian's Avatar
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    Pretty much anywhere will test your battery for free. Call ahead to make sure. Every repair shop will have equipment to test batteries and alternators.

  2. #12
    It might be a defective battery. If your alternator isn't charging an indicator light on the dash should be on.

  3. #13
    Senior Member lazierdog's Avatar
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    I have a 17 year old grand caravan and I'm on my 5th battery. I've tried various ones from a cheap Kmart Penske $50 battery to an Optima Red Top $130 battery. I also installed an autoignition starter after the first battery went dead so the ramp is rarely operated without the engine being on. Now I just keep track of it and replace it as soon as any symptoms show up.

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Theophania View Post
    thanks guys. well here's the crazy thing - i do have an exterior auxilary switch on my van (got it at a RV place). i turn it off everytime i park (especially in the winter), so no power is leeched from my battery whenever i park. this fixed my van dying problems yrs ago....but now even that isn't helping.

    i got the battery at walmart. i heard if you go back there they'll test your battery for free. i think i'm going to go there first (hoping its not the alternator. are there any specific signs that point to an alternator problem?).

    just worried it might die if i drive there! uggg
    Take the positive cable off while the vehicle is running, if it dies the alternator is bad
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  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by TimothyP View Post
    Take the positive cable off while the vehicle is running, if it dies the alternator is bad
    No offense, but that should never be done on a modern vehicle.

  6. #16
    ok good news! walmart totally replaced it since it was only 2 yrs old! w00t!
    May the fetus you save be gay

  7. #17
    Junior Member
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    Turn your headlights on while driving. After a period of time the engine will start to die if you have a bad alternator. Turn your headlights off and the car will run normally.
    Sometimes you can't get where you're going until you've been where you've been.

  8. #18
    Have someone, not Walmart or a dealer, check your alternator. It takes a couple minutes. Up dere in da uff da country dem batteries takes a beatin ya know. When its 10 degrees out your battery has about half the power as it does above 50, so with age it gets touch for it to get going. Like me.

  9. #19
    If you do not find a contributing factor, I suggest you get a remote starter switch installed. It will enable the engine to be started before you get in and to keep it running until you get out. That way you do not drain the battery. Not only that you will be able to start it and have it warmed up before you get in. If I lived in MN I would not hesitate to spend the $120-$180 bucks just for that reason. Most work from up to 100 feet away so you can probably start it from your house.
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