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Discussion Starter #1
A week ago I went out to start my car and it wouldn't start. It turns out the terminals connected to the battery were "floating" and they couldn't be tightened anymore. I replaced the terminals and the car still needed a jump the next morning. Ok, time for a new battery........even though the one that was in it was less than a year old. So I buy one/put it in, go home, park the car for the night. Next morning I needed a jump again!
The morning after that too.....and again when I was leaving work!!
Hell, I need a jump now!
I know it's the alternator and it could go at any time.....the question is, how much time do I have. I'm dealing with below zero temps almost daily, a 30 mile drive on curvy mountain roads to/from work and the battery I just bught is the cheapest I could get ($39.95). I don't want to spend the money on a new alternator if I'm going to be trading the car in.........but it'll be at least a week before that happens.
 

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Is your battery light coming on when the car is running? If not your problem is not likely the alternator. More likely something is draining your car's battery when the car is off, like a light somewhere (trunk, glove box, hood, etc.)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
No, the battery light hasn't come on.....which kinda surprised me.

I don't have a light in the trunk or under the hood....and I'm not leaving any interior lights on........
 

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If your car can make a 30 mile trip right after getting a jump, then it's not the alternator. The alternator wouldn't be able to supply the pwer to keep the car running. It's either a short somewhere, or the voltage regulator isn't charging the battery properly. Turn the car off, and check for a power draw. if there isn't any, then it's got to be the voltage regulator.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Nevermind, the car is dead....won't start......being towed out of here this afternoon.
 

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Be sure to check the plug for the small wires on the alternator. They corrode and are loose sometimes which will do exactly as you describe.
 
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