Why Won’t My Pontiac Start? Pontiac Service & Repair with Certified Technicians in Everett, Lynnwood, Edmonds, Mukilteo, Mill Creek, Washington

May 20, 2011  

Tips & Tricks for Dead Car BatteryPontiac vehicles are no longer being manufactured but Everett Pontiac Repair and Service is still available at Carson Cars Auto Repair.

It’s 8:00 am, the kids are waiting in the car, you’re running late (as usual)…where are the keys? Ah-found them! Quick! You can almost make it to work on time….to the car, your beloved, faithful Pontiac – everybody is strapped safely in – adjust the mirrors, insert key in ignition…turn the key – NOTHING HAPPENS!!!! Now what? Turn the radio off, switch the air conditioner off – try again….no response! Chances are your battery is dead. Not the best time, but at least it’s a quick fix, right? Lasso the children back into the house – call the sitter – take a deep breath and call Carson Cars guaranteed Pontiac Service & Repair with Certified Technicians in Everett, Lynnwood, Edmonds, Mukilteo, Mill Creek, Washington. Now, fix a cup of coffee sit back and let the experts do their thing!

A not uncommon series of events likely led up to this morning disaster. The folks at Carson Cars, while they love serving you, would like to offer a few tips and tricks to extend the life of your Pontiac’s battery.

Car Battery Primer

A car’s battery has the primary purpose of providing the electrical current required to start the engine. Once the car is running normally, the battery is recharged via the alternator and voltage regulator. There are cases when electrical demand placed on your Pontiac’s electrical system must be supplemented by the battery:

  • Traffic jam – the alternator is not capable of supplying power because it is not ‘spinning’ fast enough. In certain situations, like a dark rainy night, when the windshield wipers, head lights, heat and continual braking all require electricity; with no power from the idling engine, electricity is drained from the car’s battery.
  • Leaving headlights or interior courtesy lights on
  • Corroded or loose battery leads
  • Defective charging system (alternator) that fails to recharge the battery
  • Old batteries lose the ability to hold a charge. Most batteries have an expected life span of 3-5 years.

Charging a Dead Battery

With a portable charger, you can restore a battery following manufacturer’s instructions. The ‘Battery Booster Box’ connects to regular household current via grounded plug. Connect the box’s cables to the dead battery – always remember:

red = positive and black = ground

Check your Owner’s Manual to determine whether it is safe to jump your car’s battery. If you have access to a vehicle with a charged battery, and both manufacturer’s approve of the ‘jump-start’ process, you are in luck!

It is essential that you read both manuals to determine the exact recommendations for charging a battery:

Check the owner’s manual for both cars.  On some vehicles, the manufacturer does not recommend jump starting under any circumstances.  Other vehicles have specific steps that must be taken before jump starting, such as removing a certain fuse before proceeding.  Failure to follow these manufacturer’s instructions can cause expensive damage to the vehicle electronics.  If the jump start procedure in either owner’s manual is different from the instructions listed below, you should follow the instructions in the owner’s manual instead.

General Instructions to Jump-Start a Battery

Using heavy duty booster cables only (at least 6 gauge)and donning proper eye protection:

  1. Maneuver car with live battery into position that allows for access to battery. Examine both batteries to assure booster cables will reach both batteries.
  2. Open both car’s hoods.
  3. Turn both cars off – remove keys from the ignition
  4. Connect the RED (+) cable to each battery – the positive (+) terminal usually has a red protective cover.
  5. Connect the BLACK (-) cable to the negative (-) terminal of only the good battery
  6. Connect the other BLACK (-) cable to ground on the car with the dead battery. Ground can be achieved on the engine block or any metal bracket directly connected to the engine block. Note: if there is a large spark when connecting to ground, do not attempt to jump the bad battery!
  7. Once all connections are completed, attempt starting the disabled vehicle. If it starts easily, your problem is solved!
  8. Disconnect the booster cables once the disabled car is running. Remove cables as follows:  negative from engine block of disabled car; negative from other car; positive cable from disabled car; positive cable from other car.
  9. Close hoods of both cars.
  10. Shake hands, exchange numbers, become FaceBook friends.
  11. Keep the problem car running for at least 30 minutes to allow the battery to recharge.
  12. As a precaution, take your vehicle for full testing of the charging system by Pontiac Service & Repair Certified Technicians in Everett, Lynnwood, Edmonds, Mukilteo, Mill Creek, Washington