Car Doesn't Start if it Sits for a Day

Last fall my car sat for a week. The battery was dead when I tried to start it. The garage installed a new battery. Two weeks ago after the car sat for 2 days the battery was dead. Neither the tow truck driver nor I could jump the battery. The car started the next morning at the garage on the 1st crank. They replaced the battery. I drove it for 6 days straight. On the 7th day it sat and wouldn’t start the following morning. This time my wife suggested rocking the car which we did. After 3 attempts it cranked. After 4 days of driving it sat for 24 hours and won’t crank today. On each trip to the garage they said all diagnostics on the starter, battery, proved negative… everything is functioning properly with no drains registering on the battery while it sits. Can anyone give me some help on this?!? In advance, thank you!!!

Please Introduce Your Car. We Need: Make, Model, Miles, Engine Size, And Transmission Type.

Please supply any of this information you know. Many problems are vehicle specific.

Has the alternator been checked? A faulty alternator may prevent the battery from charging while it’s running.

With all due respect to you garage, you COULD have a faulty starter with a “flat spot”. This allows it to start sometimes and sometimes not. When you rocked the car you moved the flywheel just enought to allow the starter to make proper contact.

Your whole electrical system needs to be checked out carefully. Don’t go and replace things based on a hunch! As stated, some of these problems are specifc to some makes and models.

We had another post yesterday where the owner had a similar problem, but his A/C compressor had ceased up. If the A/C clutch is engaged, the car will not start; if it is disengaged, there will be no drag and it will start easily. My wife had this on a Ford with one of those huge compressors. The service station attendent just cut the drive belt and the car started.

There is an intermittent electrical disconnect, somewhere. If you hear a click, or chatter, when you try to crank the engine, that shows that full battery voltage is NOT getting to the starter, or starter solenoid. Is this the case?

1995 Oldsmobile Delta 88, 6 cylinder, automatic, 109,000+ miles

Thank you. I’ll have my electrical system checked out as soon as possible.

Also, tonight I notice there is a ‘ticking’ sound coming from the dash board on the passenger side. The light in the glove compartment dims for a ‘split second’ when the ‘ticking’ sound is heard, brightening back up until the next ‘tick’. This is when the car is turned off. Do you have an idea what this could be and is it related to the problem I described previously?

I Believe Hello Kit Is Correct.

I see that there have been Technical Service Bulletins and Revisions for electrical issues including, but not limited to, intermittent no start problems like this one with your GM Olds Delta Model and other GM models spanning several years.

They advise checking electrical connections and even say that sometimes just unplugging and replugging a connection can “fix” it. The big question is, Which connection and where is it?

Someone needs to do some tests of the start circuit. It’s basic electrical testing. Here is the wiring diagram of the start circuit: Go to Fig. 44 (Diagram 42) and enlarge the image. To enlarge the image, on your pc, press the ctrl++ keys eight times, and click “Enlarge” on the image; or, go to View, Zoom In eight times.

Let’s start at the beginning and jump to the end – electric circuit-wise. First, the battery – read the battery voltage from the battery positive post (not the cable clamp), and touch the negative test probe, of the digital multimeter, to the engine block. Is the voltage the same as when you touch the negative test probe to the negative post (again, not the clamp)? If yes, good.

Next: disconnect the little wires from the starter solenoid. Touch the positive test lead probe of the digital multimeter to the pink wire. Attach the negative test lead probe to ground. Have assistant turn the ignition key to START and hold it. The voltage should be within one volt (11 1/2 volts) of the battery voltage. If it is not, some switch, or wire connection, along the way (from battery, to ignition switch, to starter enable relay, to starter solenoid) is a poor contact and is dropping the voltage; or, if zero volts the security system (Passkey II) is preventing the starter enable relay from being energized.
This is not a full tutorial. Someone will have to take the testing from here.

Thank you for the insight. I’m going to try to get this towed to a ‘electrical expert’ that lives near. I appreciate the help.