What happened to my car battery?
May 26, 2010 7:26 PM Subscribe
Yesterday my car started fine, but today the engine wouldn't crank even once. What caused my car battery to fail so suddenly and without warning?
posted by cosmic.osmo to travel & transportation (18 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I have a 5+ year old Toyota Camry, and until today I used the original factory battery with no problems whatsoever. This morning it wouldn't start (the dash got some power, but the engine wouldn't crank), so I had to get a jump. I let the car run for an hour and a half to charge, but that did no good, and I had to get another jump to take it to the shop to get the battery replaced.
When my car was in the shop, they ran a battery test on my old battery. Here are the results:
Rated CCA: 582
Measured CCA: 366
Measured Volts: 12.78
Degrees F: 121
State of charge: (a gauge reading ~87%)
State of health: (a gauge with the needle towards low, at about 25%)
I'm curious about how my battery might have failed. I've had batteries fail on me before, but it was always during cold weather, and they always managed to crank the engine even though they couldn't start it. I was expecting some warning sign, like noticeable difficulty turning over the engine, not a sudden and near complete failure. The service rep I spoke to said he couldn't really offer an explanation, besides saying the battery needed to be replaced.
Automotive geniuses, what could have caused my car battery to fail so suddenly and without warning?