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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This started happening about a month ago and it has only happened a few times. I go to start it in the morning and it doesn't crank or anything. All electronics turn on just fine though. If I go start it in the middle of the day or even at night, it starts right up just fine.

It's also not even going below freezing right now too. It was probably 45F yesterday morning when it didn't start and 55F at night when it did start. I've read a few threads (here and other forums) where people had similar problems. One person said a cable was pulled too tight in the submarine panel (no idea where this is) and someone else said it was the ignition switch.

I also have a 2JR ECU from an 04 if that matters (I have an 05).

Here's what happens when I go to start it. You'll hear a click:
 

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Sounds like the starter relay comes on and then the volts go so low everything blacks out.
I'd check your starter. It may be locking up due to a very close tolerance between rotor and stator and not turning over.
Is you battery possibly undersized or going bad and not able to source the amount of cranking amps ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How do I go about checking the starter? The battery is just whatever the Costco replacement is for the car. Its only about 2 years old if that. I also replaced the alternator last year too.
 

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Costco battery....part of the problem. The starter can be pulled and taken to the parts store and tested.
 
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Autozone/o Rileys can test alt., Starter and battery in the car with a load test. You have to be able to turn the car off and back on though.

Costco/Walmart those batteries seem to only get you 2 years in my experience. They don't like the cold either.
 

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Do you have an autozone or the like near you? If not like CrickiKaze was saying other places can bench test the alt.,bat. and starter but you have to take them off.
I'd run it up there in the evening and have them run those 3 test.
I hate the buying guessing game. We're giving you are experiences. May not necessarily fix what you got going on.
I know we say this alot around here but it could come down to a bad ground or even morning moisture getting in a wire harness plug not letting electric flow.
 

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First, check the battery. It might not be the actual problem, but you can't test anything else with a bad battery. Brands and stores don't matter. There's three companies that make lead acid batteries in the US. Johnson Controls, Exide and DEKA. Even most dealership replacements will be from one of these three. Usually the best bet is the most capacity and best warranty. Walmart and Costco both satisfy this. If the battery is bad and was bought at Costco 2 years ago, you should be able to get a replacement. (36 month free replacement warranty)

To easily test the battery, fully charge the battery, and with the car off measure the battery voltage. Take another reading while it's in the crank position, and a last while running. Fully charged off should be about 12.6V, cranking should be about 11.5V and definitely not lower than 11, and running over 13.8V.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
There's an Autozone down the street from me. I'll go there today and have them test all 3. How would I be able to tell if it's a moisture issue?

I also hate throwing money at parts for a "maybe this will fix it" too. I have the Torque app and it's usually running in the mid 13's while I'm driving I believe. I'll see what it does when I go to Autozone.
 

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While driving voltage should be 14 +/- .3 pending load and may/will fluctuate, I don't remember what it should be but as long as its over 14 with no to minor load it should be fine. Low voltage would be an alternator issue initially but there is always a high probablity that when the alt goes the battery goes to and vic-a-versa due to not catching the issue soon enough will "strain/overwork" the other.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I just went to Autozone and the starter and alternator passed. The battery passed then failed then passed.

I had a low voltage issue before I replaced the alternator and replacing it fixed the issue so I wonder if the bad alternator affected the battery.
 

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Yes a bad alternator can affect a battery, especially if it has a failed diode passing AC direct to the battery. Same if the alternator does not put out the correct volts or amps as the battery will never get a full charge to recover from the starting drain.
 

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Didn't know that about the batteries MI Matt.
Must just be the cheaper grade all together. The ones I've had problems with Didn't have the 3 year warranty.

As far as the pass / fail on the battery...
I'm betting after they had mixed results they didn't disconnect the battery and test it not hooked up.

After it failed did they have you start the car before they tested it to be good again?
If so the battery is most likely on its way out.

I have seen that load test machine say a bad battery when it was a ground going bad. Not only sanding where the wire bolts to, but try to look up in the wire itself to make sure it ain't green looking. If you can't see in there slit the sleeving so you can, if it's good you can just tape it back up.

So the next move. If that battery is under warranty go get it. If it passes while you're there see the manager if you have to, they'll swap it.

No warranty at this time I think I'd bite the bullet and get the battery. Clean and check the grounds. And don't be afraid to look up in that positive cable on the battery for the corrosion to.

Moisture/wire corrosion problem is a mother to track down. Start with the stuff above and if we need to go down old corrosion road I'll help you best I can.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I got a new battery in and cleaned up the terminals. Though they won't that bad to begin with. It was in the low 50s this morning and it started right up.

I guess I'll have to wait and see for a colder morning but everything seems good so far!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Welp, it didn't start again this morning. Same thing is happening. One weird thing I did notice is that when I switch to on, the doors lock which is expected but when I go to start it the doors unlock. Not sure if that's another clue but thought it was weird. Still hear the fuel pump, no cranking or anything. I feel like it started in colder weather than this morning with the new battery.
 

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Might be the solenoid being stuck during the cold, that is a thing. next cold start and it doesn't turn over the first time hit the solenoid/starter really good and let us unkown what happens.
 
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