I have a 1999 Chevy Tracker that has a couple of problems. First, the battery keeps going dead. Everything is off, can’t find an electrical short. The second is that occasionally, it starts hard, acts like it is starved for fuel. Any help will be appreciated
As we have no knowledge of your mechanical expertise (or lack of) please do not take offence if this reply sounds a little condescending at times.
Fixing one thing at a time should make finding the faults easier.
Whatever you do, do NOT throw parts at it in hopes of correcting the problems.
Has the CEL (SES) come on?, get the OBD read for any codes. Sometimes, codes will be set without the CEL coming on.
Charge the battery up to a full 12.6V charge and see if it will hold it. You’ll soon see if it doesn’t.
How old is the battery?
If over 5 years, you may have to replace it.
Once you have a fully charged battery in place, have a full load test performed on the charging system. (in the vehicle, with the engine running) (make certain all battery cable connections are clean and wrench tight. (Don’t forget the starter connection)
This test can be done even with the engine running rough.
A dead battery can also result in a parasitic drain. (Eg: a glove box or in- trunk light that refuses to turn off)
Once the electrical system works, the hard starting issue can be investigated.
If the fuel supply is suspected, first check the pump to hear if it primes the fuel system when the key is turn ON.
When was the fuel filter last replaced?
Plugs, wires, dist. cap and air filter in good condition and all connected properly?
How many miles on the vehicle and what size engine, also, standard or auto transmission?
Try to keep up with the thread so we (myself and others) can continue to help get you back on the road.
Remember, it’s all in the details.
If the battery keeps going dead, the first thing I would do is get the battery tested for free at your local auto parts store. It it is fine, I would take the car in to have the charging system checked. If the engine and battery in this tracker are as small as I think they are, it might just be time for a new battery. Getting it tested will help rule that out, especially since letting it go dead repeatedly will kill it quicker than if it was being used normally.
If you rule out the battery and charging system, I will have more suggestions.