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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm new here so you will have to bear with me. Today the Toyota died without any warning. So we replaced the battery, gave it a jump start and it started no problem, but then when we removed the cables and my hubby went to hit the brakes, the car stalled right out and wouldn't restart? Any idea what this could be, I'm think a short somewhere, because it would stay running as long as you didn't hit the brakes or turn on the lights...
 

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Gen 2 camry Guru
91 Camry Base
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more info

Hello,
can we get some more information from you? what year, engine, mileage, when the car dies does it sputter down or does it cut straight off?

Were you watching the tail lights when you hit the brakes? Did the lights flash or did they straight on and off. With the car stalled out will the brake lights work at all?

:welcome:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
it's a 1991 Camry, 325,000 miles, v6 2.5L one previous owner, it just dies no sputter, but will restart no problem when jumped. when hitting the breaks while still connected to the jumpers they would go on and off like normal, once disconnected they would come on and as soon as car stalled poof off and no restart and no electricity.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
not yet, plan on taking it in today, just last night I was so frustrated by the whole thing, that I thought I would ask before I took a good portion of the engine apart =D
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
not yet, plan on taking it in today, just last night I was so frustrated by the whole thing, that I thought I would ask before I took a good portion of the engine apart =D
So I have now replaced the battery and the alternator, which was not an easy chore, and the car still dies when you hit the brakes or turn on the lights, not sure where to go from here...
 

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sounds like you have a short in your ABS somewhere cause it to ground out the ignition.

no 'sputtering' sounds like no spark.

check all fuses and cables leading to the fuse box.

Check under hood fuse box and interior cab box as well.

if anything looks blackened check it out with prowess.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
it also happens when you turn the headlights on and off, am wondering if it could be a relay? checked all the fuses, they are all good.
 

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get the voltmeter (the cheap one is enough), set it to dc (20 volts) and measure the voltage at the battery with engine running; if it reads 12 volts (should be about 14) or less, either the alternator is not charging or the wire between alternator and battery is broken. Also check the "negative" cable connection to the transmission and the body.
 

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Gen 2 camry Guru
91 Camry Base
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additional ideas

Ok so lets start off with some basic testing here.

Put the car in neutral and start it up. Hit the brakes and let me know if it dies like before.

This could be a short at the light relay under the hood. Pull the relay and look for signs of scorching. If there is no scorching take a look at the bottom wires to make sure nothing is exposed or making contact improperly.

If there is nothing this could be your voltage regulator failing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I've checked all the grounds, all the fuses, including the relays, and it's a brand new alternator and battery, I give up at this point, I will either take it to Toyota or blow it up /shrug. I don't have a meter, and I can't really afford to do any of what I have done already to the thing. I am sorry I sound a bit brash, but I can't help it, 10 hours under the hood to have no progress =/
 

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Gen 2 camry Guru
91 Camry Base
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I've checked all the grounds, all the fuses, including the relays, and it's a brand new alternator and battery, I give up at this point, I will either take it to Toyota or blow it up /shrug. I don't have a meter, and I can't really afford to do any of what I have done already to the thing. I am sorry I sound a bit brash, but I can't help it, 10 hours under the hood to have no progress =/

I know your frustration buddy, step back take a diffrent look at this situation. We know it starts however when you hit the brakes or turn on the lights it dies this is the symptom. Think of this with a reverse approach ok we know how to trigger the event. We need to see how many ways to recreate the event.

Things we know!
1. The batt is good
2. the alternator is good,
3. the starter is good.

These are the critical starting and charging components all check out

So remove the light relays/ brake fuse and hit the brakes. We need to see if this will trigger the event. Another relay to check is the flasher relay. when the car is started does the flasher/turn signal lights trigger the event?

This is clearly an electrical problem the part is trying to figure out which ways you can and cannot trigger the event. Its safe to say the distributor is fine.

Don't give up but you have to test each part of the electrical system
circuit by circuit

To trace a wiring problem with the light relays removed
 

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The meter is about $10; the alternator from the chain store has 50% chance of being bad :)
 
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