Assistance Troubleshooting Possible Dead Battery from 5000 Miles Away!
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    1. #1
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      Assistance Troubleshooting Possible Dead Battery from 5000 Miles Away!

      OK, there are dead battery topics - I searched. This one about trying to troubleshoot a battery issue from 5000 miles away. I'm away from home until mid November, we have people watching our house, and one of the things I've asked it to start the car 2x per month and drive it. They called me to say it's dead. Here is where we are:

      1. 2006 V50 2.4. Battery 5+ years old
      2. Car stored on Battery Tendor Junior trickle charger (steady red light should indicate that it seems to be charging...but not green that says charged.... or not flashing red that means not-chargeable)
      3. Key is now stuck in ignition
      4. Car "dead". Nothing at all
      5. Attempted to start it with a jump-box (nothing happened)

      I'm trying to walk our friend through this step by step. I'm wondering if its simply a dead (old) battery?

      1. I think battery tender "junior" may be too wimpy to charge a really dead battery?
      2. would a better battery/tender charger help? (I worry that if battery is really at 0 volts, there is nothing I can do)
      3. Or should we go right to replace the battery?
      4. If replace, is it ok to let car sit in its current dead state for another 6 weeks? Or should I get car towed and have battery replaced (ugh. don't want to pay towing for something so simple but don't want to ask this friend to to take on replacing the battery.

      Thanks!
      2010 V50 R-Design, T5 AWD 6-Speeed | 2006 V50 2.4i

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    3. #2
      Junior Member Jirv0id's Avatar
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      Those tenders are really only good for an amp of charge. If you have a parasitic drain like a light or something it can pull more than an amp easy. These cars also pull a lot of power when they are in the number 2 key location. What should be done is the battery terminals removed from the car and have the battery charged while it's disconnected from the car.
      2007 V50 T5 AWD M66 ~ Custom machined weighted shiftknob powdercoated wrinkle polstarblue, Custom pod filter intake, Muffler delete, 18" Pegasus IPD Reps, EBC redstuff pads, EBC blank rotors.

    4. #3
      Junior Member Sysyphus61's Avatar
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      Certainly wouldn't bother towing... I like Jirvoid's suggestion of charging while disconnected from the car - if that doesn't work it's going to be a lot cheaper to bring a new battery to the car than bring the car to a new battery. Can't see it coming to any significant harm without a battery for just a few weeks
      2009 C70 T5, Celestial Blue 130k
      2011 S60 T6 AWD Caspian Blue

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    6. #4
      My .02 -

      If you want your key out, I would disconnect the battery shoe from the battery and attach a booster to the shoe and ground. It will give you enough power for enough time to switch the key back to off and remove. With the battery connected, it is trying to suck down (or even shorted out) enough to reach a "balanced state" aka similar voltage as the booster, and therefore, nothing else will be powered. If you pop out your headlights and unplug them, that's gonna be about 120w of power you just disconnected from the system that automatically turns on when you turn on the key.

      Then you can get another battery in there and swap it out at your leisure.

      Theoretically a car can sit for quite a while. I revived my neighbours dead mustang which had sat for 6 months with a new battery, and a turn of the key. I advised him to get an oil change (as with synthetic oil when exposed to enough moisture and cold begins to change into some nasty stuff that's bad for the car). 6 weeks is literally nothing to a well oiled motor, but I would suggest an oil change should the winter months strike early. Cold weather and synthetic oil means you'll get a waxy buildup wherever synthetic oil resides.
      2006 Volvo S40 AWD T5 M66 - Dusty Rusty
      2012 Subaru Outback 2.5i CVT - Slowmobile - CAI only, Powerstop Rotors+Pads.
      1996 HD Electra Glide - Big Bertha - 10:1 Wisecos; EV13 Cam: Ultima Digital Ignition; Buell Head Conversion; E85 Carb Tuned;

    7. #5
      Junior Member
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      Thanks for the suggestions, I am leaning towards doing nothing until I'm back in November. I'm not sure how comfortable our house sitter would be disconnecting the battery. I'll try to get one of my more car-savvy friends to see if they can pass by the house and unhook the battery and reconnect the trickle charger to see if that does anything at all.

      Great suggestions. Thank you
      2010 V50 R-Design, T5 AWD 6-Speeed | 2006 V50 2.4i

    8. #6
      Junior Member
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      Apr 2018
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      I'd bet your battery is just dead. Even with the battery tender, the battery won't last forever. I have a Jaguar that sits on a battery tender 99% of the time. I barely ever have time to drive it. It's battery recently died. It was 5.5 yrs old as well. The tender still had a red light but the car wouldn't crank.
      The key stuck in the Volvo is a pretty good indication of a bad battery

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