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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 04-17-08, 07:49 AM   #1
loop288
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Dead Battery

begin rant

after deciding it was too windy to commute 10 miles I get into the car and find the battery is dead

this is after not driving it for only 5 days (toyota Yaris) like you guys I bike as much as possible running errands and work commute... save gas, cut pollution, get fit. I'm the only one that bicycle to work out of 700 employees

I finally get to work late after 1 hr wait for the tow truck... now I have to install a battery saver, I'm sure you're all ahead of me but for the new commuters get a battery saver or disconnect your battery if you want to save the planet

end rant
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Old 04-17-08, 09:54 AM   #2
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I would consider checking the battery out. Car batteries shouldn't die after only 5 days. When my last car battery died, it had symptoms of sluggish starting for a few weeks beforehand.

I hear some batteries can be rejuvenated by adding distilled water and/or electrolyte to the cells. But no battery (car or otherwise) lasts forever.
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Old 04-17-08, 10:02 AM   #3
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Toyota Yaris = pretty new car, right? A new battery shouldn't go dead in 5 days. Did you leave something on?

There was a thread about this in the "living car free" forum recently, some folks suggested a solar powered battery charger thing. I've also seen kill switches on cars, as security devices, but also would keep your battery from running down.
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Old 04-17-08, 10:23 AM   #4
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yes... the Yaris battery shouldn't die so quickly and no accessory was left on* so I'm as puzzle as you guys.

* as far as I know nothing was left on.

anyhow I'll be using a battery saver from now on
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Old 04-17-08, 10:40 AM   #5
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There's something else going on aside from just not driving it for 5 days. I've left my Jeep to sit in the garage for 2 weeks in the winter, and it still started up just fine.

You don't have anything plugged into the accessory outlet (used to be the cigarette lighter), do you? Most cars don't kill the power to that outlet just because the car is off. I nearly killed a battery because I left my CB radio on.
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Old 04-17-08, 11:03 AM   #6
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A car battery should be ok when left parked for at *least* a month or two. The issue with keeping a car parked for a month or more is with the fluid systems. The car's fluids need to circulate at highway speeds, and if it sits for too long (say, over a month) you end up with trouble. You don't need a battery saver, you need a chat with the dealer.
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Old 04-17-08, 11:08 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loop288 View Post
begin rant

after deciding it was too windy to commute 10 miles I get into the car and find the battery is dead

this is after not driving it for only 5 days (toyota Yaris) like you guys I bike as much as possible running errands and work commute... save gas, cut pollution, get fit. I'm the only one that bicycle to work out of 700 employees

I finally get to work late after 1 hr wait for the tow truck... now I have to install a battery saver, I'm sure you're all ahead of me but for the new commuters get a battery saver or disconnect your battery if you want to save the planet

end rant
How old is the battery? They can go at any time, gradually or all at once.

I used to live in the desert where we read battery warranties for chuckles. That was because when a battery gets over 100 degrees, it produces electricity at above 100% of its ability. It was rare to see a 3 year old battery.

It makes the wind seem a little less harsh doesn't it.
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Old 04-17-08, 11:11 AM   #8
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When I found my Tacoma with a dead battery after a few weeks of under-use (had to cancel a doctor's appointment that time), I just bought a new battery and then sold the truck.

I figured the truck got jealous of the bike getting all of the attention and wanted a better home. So I found it one on Craigslist.
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Old 04-17-08, 11:21 AM   #9
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Being that it's probably such a new car, I'd have the dealer replace the battery, the battery in my Subaru came with a 3 year warranty and the replacement battery I purchased for my Volkswagen came with a 64 month sliding scale warranty (the older the battery gets the less money towards a new one I get if I need it replaced).
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Old 04-17-08, 11:26 AM   #10
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If it can't hold a charge for 5 days, the battery is shot. Either that or there's something wrong with the charging system, or there's a light or something causing a drain.
Last year I was fighting my car battery being dead after a week of no running. I stuck a solar charger on it and that got me another month or two, but eventually I replaced the battery. Now it can sit for weeks and spin right up immediately.
Honestly it's the first time I've ever had to replace a battery. It was 11 years old. Then 2 months later the 7 year old battery in the van died. They must have infected one another.
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Old 04-17-08, 12:08 PM   #11
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+1 on 5 days being way too short. My beatacular truck's battery died after 6 weeks last time. On street sweeping day no less. I had to drive instead of bike to work that day so the battery would charge. Go figure!

If it's under warranty, take it to the stealership and get it replaced.
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Old 04-17-08, 03:42 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
How old is the battery? They can go at any time, gradually or all at once.

I used to live in the desert where we read battery warranties for chuckles. That was because when a battery gets over 100 degrees, it produces electricity at above 100% of its ability. It was rare to see a 3 year old battery.

It makes the wind seem a little less harsh doesn't it.
When we lived in Sin City, I replaced the battery every two years. I would trade in the old one for a new one, and it would only cost me $10.00 (92 Ply. Gr. Voyager).
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