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Discussion Starter #1
Hi folks. My truck started just fine today. I drove it to my wife's school to move some equipment for her. Got it loaded and tried to start. Got the "solenoid rattle" as if I had dead batteries. Put a charger on it, and it showed them as good. The "startup lights" (WTS, CEL, etc) on the dash come one for a few seconds, then flash off briefly, back on for a few seconds, etc. If I try to start it, the lights go basically out (again, like a dead battery). Battery connections look fine. Turned the switch to "run" so we could push it into a parking space. The whole time I was moving it, the dash lights were flickering intermittently. Any suggestions?
 

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TMS,

What does a voltmeter say? Have someone true starting the truck while you watch the voltmeter reading.. It really does sound like you have a pair of dead batteries. I don't particularly trust what a charger says about the batteries' health. Or pull both batteries and take them over to a battery shop and have them checked out.

Cj
 

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Discussion Starter #3
TMS,

What does a voltmeter say? Have someone true starting the truck while you watch the voltmeter reading.. It really does sound like you have a pair of dead batteries. I don't particularly trust what a charger says about the batteries' health. Or pull both batteries and take them over to a battery shop and have them checked out.

Cj
Thanks. I am actually wondering that myself. I just looked it up. I bought the batteries in May 2016. They SAY 6 year, but we all know that's rarely the case. Hopefully I can put a meter on it tomorrow.
 

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Battery connections "seem" ok has made a monkey of me, on several occasions. Lol

I would start there, remove and look, especially if it's been a long time since they were cleaned. Make sure the cables are still tight in the cable ends also, no major corrosion.

From what you are describing, it sounds like a loose connection, check ALL the connections, batteries, starter solenoid, starter, everything.

Sent from my E6810 using Tapatalk
 

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I'm with the others, it has to be a connection somewhere, check all connections and grounds.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Pretty sure it's simply dead battery(ies). I tried to jump it off a Jeep 4.0, but it just wasn't enough juice. It DID at least engage the flywheel and try to start, just didn't generate enough RPM to do it. Got the batteries out and have one on the charger now. I'll be disappointed if my 6 year batteries have only made 3.5, but I should be able to get about 35% of my money back. These are Interstate Megatrons. If I decide to go with something else, what do you guys like? I will double check all connections for cleanliness and tightness when I reinstall.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
So....the driver's side battery was low. I couldn't jump it off my son's Jeep 4.0 (not surprising), but after some charging it at least turned over, so I think it's only a battery/alternator issue. I took both batteries out and brought them home.The driver's side was low. other was OK. Assuming my connections are good, sounds like a bad battery? I charged it Weds night. Put the I think I my reverse the battery locations when I put them back in and see what happens. A few questions:

1-When I put a voltmeter on the low battery, I swear it said c. 24 volts (engine running). This would make sense if the batteries are in series and one is low. But.....are they?

2-Normally I would expect 14.4v with the engine running. Is that true, or 28.8?

Sorry. Diesel noob here. Thanks in advance.
 

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It’s a 12v system. And FWIW interstate batteries are total garbage in my experience. We get a year at best out of the MTP series 65 group batteries.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks. That's what I thought. I must have just set something wrong on my multi meter. If it's charging at 24V I would have a MAJOR issue. Thanks for the heads up about interstate as well. Are the Optima Red Tops good? One of our local police officers was recommending them. He used to have a 7.3 Excursion.
 

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i regularly get 5-6 years out of interstate batteries in all vehicles except for the plow trucks. the heavy load of plow motor and emergency lights drops them to two year life
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks, Tom. Good to hear. I had chosen Interstate when I bought them BECAUSE they seemed to have a good reputation. This truck's life has been shamefully easy since I bought it. Towing a 14,000 lb 5th wheel camper trailer a few times a yeat, and a 5500 lb enclosed about half a dozen times a year. I AM curious how they will handle a warranty claim if it is indeed a bad battery. Shouldn't replace only one battery.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Firestone is prorating both batteries (even though only one is bad), so no worries. Couple hundred bucks for both. Doesn't make sense to switch manufacturers when it would cost me double to do so. Thanks for the advice.
 
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