i can't get my car started. there's a loud ticking sound from the same area where the main relay is. the car won't even crank. could this be my battery?
i was working in the car with it idling and the radio on. i noticed that the music stopped and the stereo face was dead, but the car was still idling. i turned the car off, and when i turned the key to "on" the stereo came back on, and when i tried to start it again is when it wouldn't crank and was ticking.
i need to go pick up my girlfriend this evening, so i need to get this fixed asap.
Re: car won't start - loud ticking sound (Lil Red CRXsi)
check your alternator belt first, cause you wouldnt want to get it started going down your driveway then it just stalls, cause they you're stuck with a car that wont start on the road. try either charging the battery and see if it starts then or use jumper cables, see if it starts, if it does make sure it keeps running afterwards and then maybe get your alternator checked.
1988 Honda Civic Hatch SE - DOHC ZC(for sale)
1994 Accord LX coupe(current driver)
- lowered on eibach pro's and kyb agx
idle speed barely charges. unless u have a modded alternator. u gotta have it driven or 3-4000+ rpms for any good charge. and thats still not real good. took me a 8 mile trip to charge my battery sufficient enough to start it. my car also has a j1 tranny so keep high rpm is easy.
Re: car won't start - loud ticking sound (serious)
it also depends on how loud you had your stereo and whether or not you have an external amp in your car, etc. any time the current draw exceeds what the alternator is producing at a given rpm, the car will take the needed juice from the battery. the same theory works in reverse, whereupon if the alternator output exceeds the draw it will "overflow" and charge the battery.
point being, at a low (idle) rpm with a stereo up loud, ESPECIALLY if you have an amp or extra speakers (or headlights, etc) causing an additional current draw, there will be a constant need for the battery to supply the extra juice, until it is unable to do so.
depending on what you were doing to the car, you would have been best off if you took the car for a short ride without using the stereo and let the battery charge itself, or at least continued to let it idle, maybe revving the engine a bit, without the stereo on.
you might want to eyeball your alternator belt, and after you jump it you might want to check that it will make it around the block before you try to go get your girlfriend (if the alternator is dead, it won't last long before the battery runs down so low that the fuel injection system can no longer function), but most likely all you need to do is jumpstart it and don't use your stereo when you go to get her so the system has a chance to recharge.
Re: car won't start - loud ticking sound (xcathodex)
and yes, the clicking is the engagement of the main relay that activates the starter, but there's not enough juice behind it to actually begin to crank the car. since all signs point to you having run the battery down, this is your culprit.
turn on your headlights, and try to start your car. if the headlights dim when the relay kicks in, it's because there's not enough juice to crank the starter. if the headlights stay strong and you're even able to listen to the radio, the battery has juice and your starter is dead. however, in this instance, there's enough evidence toward the former as to almost rule out the latter.
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