Problem starting car in cold weather

lexus

#1

My 92 year old mother has a 2000 Lexus GS300 with 30,000 miles on it. Up until three years ago, her car was in a garage. For the last three years it has been in a car port. Ever since she moved to central Ohio, she has been having trouble starting her car in cold weather. Two years ago the dealer replaced the battery, but the problem persists. After having problems late last fall, we took the car to the dealer, and we were told that there is nothing wrong with the battery, and she simply doesn’t drive it enough (which is true). Many of her neighbors at her independent living facility drive their cars less frequently and yet their cars start right up. The car wouldn’t start again this morning. Is this a problem that can be remedied? Thanks


#2

Your mother is an ideal candidate for a block heater. The carport must have a plug-in somewhere. That warms up the engine for easy starts. I also agree that someone should take this car for a fast 20 mile drive once a month.

My late mother in law lived in an identical situation.


#3

A battery with the most cold cranking amps (cca) should help check your specs for the battery, typically cca ranges from 500 to 875, more driving would be great, if you could set up a battery maintainer with a quick disconnect that would be ideal.


#4

The only remaining advice would be to change all lube oil to low viscosity synthetic. One of my vehicles is and it turns over like summer at zero degrees. Not sure about the transaxle but I would there too if applicable. Haven’t had a fwd car for a few years. This is important if the car sits and makes a huge difference for a weak battery.


#5

I’m not sure I know what the problem is. Does it crank but just won’t start? Or is it NOT even turning over? More information is needed.


#6

You never said what kind of trouble this is. When it is cold, she turns the key and…? She gets nothing? Some clicks? The car just cranks and cranks and cranks but won’t fire up? It cranks once or a few times and then the cranking just peters out?

If the car just cranks and cranks and cranks without firing up then forget about the battery. If the battery is just too weak to crank it then someone should check it for a parasitic draw. Since it’s not driven very much, it might not be a large one. Batteries do vary in their quality as well their specs. You might want to ask a reputable, independent shop to evaluate the battery and see if they suggest something with higher CCA or something like that.