CarTalk.com Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Starting Trouble and ABS Failure?

I have a 99 Honda Accord with over 217,000 miles. My car runs great once I get it to start. About two weeks ago I was fueling up and forgot to remove the keys from the ignition and totally drained the battery. I jumped started the car but ever since then it has a very hard time starting. When I go to turn on my car, the first time I turn the Key the engine turns over like its supposed too but it doesn’t start, so I turn the key back to the off position and turn it again and it starts up after a few seconds. What do I need to replace to make my car start on the first turn like a normal car?

My second questions is about my ABS. I was driving home from a friends house and a dog ran out in front of me; I hit my breaks and realized my ABS wasn’t kicking in and hit the poor dog with the right side of my bumper and the right wheels went over the dog. I pulled over to check on the dog and stood next to him until he left us. When I got back in my car I noticed my ABS light was on. What do I need to do to fix this problem, and about how much is it going to run me?



Thanks Your Buddy

Luis Rangel from Bakersfield CA

8/17/09

I was fueling up and forgot to remove the keys from the ignition and totally drained the battery.

Unless you are spending hours trying to start your car, it is not going to drain the battery while you are filling it up.

My guess is you need to check each end of each battery cable. Disconnect one end at a time, clean it and reattach securely. I would not rule out a starter problem either.

I agree with Mr. Meehan, as I usually do.
If your battery was severely drained by having the ignition key in the “on position” for a few minutes, the battery is essentially at the end of its lifespan and will not hold a sufficient charge. A battery that is in good condition could endure this situation for a few hours and still have more than enough power to start your engine.

As Mr. Meehan suggested, check the battery connections at both ends for corrosion and tightness. Have a load test done on the battery, and replace it if–as I suspect–it is not holding a charge properly. Bring the car’s maintenance up to date, because old worn-out spark plugs will also produce starting problems. If none of these things help, then it will be time to consider problems with the starter or the fuel pump.

The ABS problem is unrelated. The presence of the ABS light indicates that, while your braking system may be operating normally in other respects, the ABS function is non-operative.

The car can certainly be driven w/o ABS, but if you want to have the ABS problem fixed nobody can tell you from a distance exactly how much that repair might cost. However, you should be aware that ABS repairs are not usually cheap. Only after an examination of the car can a mechanic can tell you exactly what is wrong with the ABS system, and how much it will cost to remedy the problem.

thanks ill start out by checking the battery.