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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, haven't had any problems with starting. Replaced battery in the fall, full tune up just before that.

I accidently left my door ajar and I went out to start it, after several days, and obviously it wouldn't start. Called my brother to give me a boost and after many minutes (15+) it still wouldn't start. Nothing. No lights, no security light, no turning over, nothing. So he hooks up a battery charger/starter and it reads the battery as still dead and still won't start with it on "Jump" setting (completely dead). He checks a bunch of the fuses under the dash, all look good. Took out the battery and put in another one and it still doesn't turn over. He put the charger on the second battery and set it to "Jump" and we hear a ticking noise coming for the passenger side, but I don't think it was the starter (could be wrong) and when he goes to start it, it doesn't turn over but makes a sound - not sure how to describe it though.

So, I do some small repairs on the truck, but nothing too major. What steps should I take to diagnose this? If the battery is charged, shouldn't I be getting power to the accessories? Would a bad starter cause no power? Are there other fuses I should look at? I even tried to start it in neutral (it's an automatic). Considering I haven't had any problems with starting I'm not sure where to start. I thought it was just a dead battery. Could it be the starter? The alternator? Wires? Relay Switch? Fuses? Etc??? I even tried hitting the starter (although it's in a tough space to give it too much of a hit). At this point it's a lawn ornament and would prefer to check out things myself before paying to have it towed somewhere.

Any suggestions or ideas would be greatly appreciated!
 

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Hi, if you still have this problem, you were thinking about it the right way.

It can be a bad ground from the battery or other bad wires.

It can be a relay or the starter.

I may start with visually looking at the wires around the battery, the battery terminals, etc. If they seems bad, clean them up or replace them.

If that doesn't work, try jumping the starter right to the battery. If that does nothing, take the starter out and take it to autozone or another auto parts place. They can test it in a machien and it will tell you if the starter still works.

If you can jump it and it starts, it would probably be a bad relay or iginition or the wires for those.

This is just a place to start.

And yes, if the battery has juice, you should be able to turn the headlights on, the radio, and other things with just the key in the on postion (lights dont even need that usually). If this isn't happening, then the battery isn't putting anything out to the car. Either bad bateries or wires, fuses, etc.

Just start here and post the results and I can try to help you with everything I know (fixing things is just a hobby and I'm only 21 yrs old, so I don't have too much experience yet)
 

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Hi, I recently had the same problem with my Sentra. It turns out, the battery terminals on mine were totally dirty and caked with stuff. Have you tried cleaning the terminals AND the clamps that hook on to them? I suggest a paste of baking soda & water with a metal brush. It worked for me, it started right up after I cleaned mine. Otherwise, I'd say look at the alternator.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies. Forgot to come back and let everyone know what happened.
I had the truck towed into a local shop that specializes in electrical issues. Turns out it was a fuse (actually two). The other fuse was for my radio and had nothing to do with the vehicle not starting (obviously).
The mechanic said that this particular fuse is actually under one of the fuse panels under the hood and you have to remove the panel and then unbolt this fuse from the frame to replace it. On the invoice they called it "100A Maxi Fuse". Turned out to be a fairly inexpensive fix considering what some of the other issues could have been.

I highly recommend that if anyone ever has a problem that is obviously electrical in nature to take the vehicle to someone who specializes in it. I paid a little more per hour but I'm sure a "we do everything" garage would have taken twice as long to diagnose the problem and would have ended up costing more. That is assuming that they didn't go through their 'swap out' diagnostic procedure where they guess at what is wrong and you pay for the time and parts they replace. The fuse cost me $7 and they replaced the other fuse for free.

Thanks again for the advice!! Hope this helps someone else in the future.
 
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