1990 Buick Park Avenue Lost all Power


My daughter was driving down the road yesterday when the buick just quit and lost all power. Unfortunately she is 16 and flighty so I have no way of knowing if any lights came on or if there were any strange noises leading up to the stall, I only know what I found when I got there to pick her up. There is no power whatsoever. No lights, radio, door locks - nothing. Any suggestions would be helpful. My husband doesn’t think it is the alternator as he believes there should be some power if that is the cause. I’m just looking for a place to start or we might just hall it to the junk yard.


It very well could be a alternator problem. If the alternator failed the car will run off the battery until it is dead. Then there will be no electrical power at all.

It could be a loose connection on the battery. So start by checking the battery cables, make sure they are clean and tight.

I would recommend having a complete charging system and battery check.


I agree. A mechanic can check the charging system and the battery quickly and for minimal cost. What those tests determine will tell you which way to go.


Yeah, aren’t kids great? Hopefully she didn’t leave it in the middle of the street like my oldest son did about 16 years ago. “Well, the steering quit when it died. I couldn’t pull it over”…

I agree that it could be the alternator. Once the battery is depleted to the point where the battery can’t run the car’s computer, IT WILL DIE.

Have you tried jumpstarting it?

Most parts stores, even WAL*MART, will check your battery, starting and charging system for free. You can remove the battery and take it to them for a check, but they’ll have to have the whole car to check the rest of it, once you jump start it.


We did try jump starting it and still nothing. Husband thought it was a loose battery cable but all efforts to get any kind of juice into the car were fruitless. The daughter did have enough sense to coast into the nearest driveway and pulled over far enough to the side to allow the homeowner to get past her. Ended up towing it home and now it sits. If it was a bad alternator would jump starting it work? Husband thinks he should have been able to get some kind of juice with the cables - got nothing. Any more suggestions as to what would cause this as we are going to be looking into it this weekend when we have more time. We have been able to fix most car problems without a mechanic, but this one has hubby stumped.


I would check the ignition switch circuit and the main power buss for the accessories for a problem. Having at least a test light probe to check for voltage will be necessary.