Battery or alternator


car won’t start except with a jump…and then not again…thoughts


You’re probably dealing with a dead battery. This is especially true if the battery is over three years old.

A word of warning! If you continue to operate the vehicle with a dead battery, the alternator will eventually be damaged, and that will require replacement also.



Go get the battery tested. Most autoparts stores can do a load test on the battery and check the charging system for free. This takes the guesswork out of it.


Remove and clean the battery connections. Reconnect the battery, jump start the car again and check the electrical system voltage. It should read about 14 volts with the engine running. If it is lower (12 volts), then the alternator is not working.