Battery or Starter?

Hi all,

When I tried to start my 2005 Toyota Camary today (after it sat for 3 or 4 days), all I get is a rapid fire machine-gun clicking. I assume this means the starter is trying to engage but can’t due to low amperage. However, all of my accessories (radio, fans, lights) work fine.

I’d rather not have it towed if it’s just a battery, but everything else electrical seems to be working.

Any ideas?


It is probably the battery. The starter pulls more current than anything else in the electrical system, so it is not unusual that the other electrical items work. A starter may draw 200 amperes while the radio may draw less than 5 amperes. A jump from a booster battery would confirm that you are ready for a battery, If the battery in your Camry is the original, you really got your money out of this battery.

Start with the easiest thing: Check all your connections, especially the battery terminals.

Battery terminal connections sometimes need to be cleaned, both the post and the connector. I was reminded of this just two days ago when my vehicle started when I wanted to move it to the garage to load some tools. Once loaded, it wouldn’t start. It was just bad connections, the battery was fine. I cleaned and tightened the contact surfaces and it’s been starting normally ever since.