Car Died and now won't start without jump

I have a 2001 Honda Civic that died a few nights back after a trip. I got it jump started to drive around and charge the battery but it died while idling at a stop. Got it towed back home to work on it and was told it was probably the alternator. Since I just replaced that back in january I was alright with that, and ran an alternator test today to see if that was necessary and it appears that the alternator is still working. (Volt tester jumped from 12.3 volts while off to 14.3 volts once I jump started the car and got it running). After getting it to run for 30 minutes I turned the car off and left for half an hour. Went to restart the car and it died again. Not sure if it is the battery as that is only 2 years old, figured I would check here to see if anyone might know something.

You mean the engine cranks but does not start?

Yes, apologies. Still new to the technical lingo.

Apologies, it cranks the first time when trying to start it.

I guess its not related to a charging system problem but more like a fuel delivery problem.

With the engine off ,press on the gas pedal for 30 seconds then try to start the car

Attempted that, but the engine didn;t crank so I am charging the battery and will get back to you once I try it again

Did you happen to check what the charge was on the battery?

58% on the battery

Which is what voltage?

Voltage while not on bounces between 11.4 to 12.6

11.4 is too low…your battery may have given up the ghost.

1 Like

Batteries can die prematurely.

I had to replace one once that was less than 3 years old. Luckily it still had a week or two of the 3 year warranty, and I got a brand new one for free.

If the engine cranks over fine but will not start you might give some consideration to a failing ignition switch as that has been a problem that has lingered around forever. See if there is a spark at the plugs while cranking.
Some Hondas of this era are under a Recall for this problem but it applies to various decades of Hondas Recall or no Recall.

If you need a jump to start I will assume you left your headlights on or battery drained for some reason. Checking the voltage is one thing. A weak battery will show 12.5 volts but what you need is a load tester. It will show voltage then you press a button for a few seconds and it puts a “load” on the battery and you can watch the needle drop.
Jump statring is for emergencies and I abhor the practice. I have seen both batteries die forever during a jump start and I have seen them explode.
If you must jump start and it runs but dies after a mile then your battery is shot, probably from leaving ights on which 2 or 3 times your battery is dead. Then people abuse the alternator using it as a battery charger! Bad! Use a battery charger ASAP after a jump start 24 hours on low amp setting.
The alternator is there to top off the battery while you drive and run accessories. It cannot charge a battery and trying to make it do so it will die soon from the practice.
You have toasted and abused your vehicle electric system. You can google stuff these days so google automotive batteries (not youtube) and find a bona fide site to learn. Lots to know to take care of a battery. I buy a 4 year battery and can get 7 years out of them by doing the right thing. So learn everything, about cars that you can (forums too often are “Did ya try…”)

or, their battery just died. It happens, and not always from abuse…

1 Like