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Discussion Starter #1
One morning it wouldn't start so I jumped it and lately I've noticed it has been starting slow. I took my 2003 Highlander to Advance to get the battery tested and they were not exactly definitive on what the issue was. Battery measured 305 CCA and 650 was expected. Alternator tested good (according to the tool) BUT the charging system results perplexed the tech so he asked someone else and she said based on the squiggles on the graph she thought a diode on the alternator was bad. No load measured 13.69 volts and loaded measured 13.43 volts. And something about the charge spiking after I let go of the accelerator when revving it. Anyway should I replace the alternator and try to trickle charge the battery back to health? Or just replace the battery since it is the stock one from 7 years ago. Is it possible to test with a multimeter?
 

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If your battery is actually 7 years old - you need a new battery. I suggest you go to Walmart and buy a battery - they do high volume so the batteries are fresh and they have pretty good quality batteries at very good prices. The mid tier or higher price battery usually get the best ratings there.
 

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Battery first for sure. Stay away from the low priced batteries. You will want something that comes with a replacement warranty and the highest cold crank.
 

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2008 Highlander Base
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Like jabberwock said, make sure the battery is fresh. You can do that by checking the date of manufacture stamp on the top or side of the battery, which depends on the manufacturer. If you don't know how to read the date stamp then just Google it, there's a ton of sites out there that describe how. :thumbsup:
 

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30YRTOYOTAPARTSEXPERINCE
04 Camry; 09 Sienna
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I am just going to add another "you need a battery" comment. 7 years on the origianl battery, yea, its time. Like other members have stated, make sure you get a fresh battery.
 

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I am just going to add another "you need a battery" comment. 7 years on the origianl battery, yea, its time. Like other members have stated, make sure you get a fresh battery.
+1. Most alternators like Catalytic converters usually don't die of natural causes, they're usually murdered. The alternator will have to work harder as the battery life gets depleted (I always change my Toyota batteries during their 6th year of use), therefore reducing it's lifespan. Alternators are designed to top-up a depleted battery under normal use not to recharge from a dead state. I would be wary about a shop that can't diagnose a simple electrical system.
 

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2004 I4 Highlander
2001 Honda Accord
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They didn't measure cold cranking amps in Denver in September. They measured cranking amps, and if it was 305 that battery isn't making it through winter. Start there, and I agree that is likely the whole problem.
 

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'06 Seinna XLE AWD, '04 Highlander V6 4WD
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+1 will not make it through the winter
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for all the advice! Just bought a new battery and things are working fine. I had to ask for a fresher battery from the back as the one he first offered was manufactured early 2010.
 

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2008 Highlander Base
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Thanks for all the advice! Just bought a new battery and things are working fine. I had to ask for a fresher battery from the back as the one he first offered was manufactured early 2010.
:thumbsup: That's the way to do it......the squeaky wheel got greased....
 
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