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acf

I Love A Lexus Dealership!

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Not.

Quick story that happened today. I got in my car to leave Home Depot and tried to start my car. Got nothing but click-click-click-click...when trying to turn over. My limited knowledge first impression was that maybe the battery was shot. But the radio, horn, dome light, etc. were all functioning perfectly. So my second thought was that it could be the starter. Here's where my knowledge ends though. As Murphy's law would have it, my cell phone is at home charging :rolleyes: so I use the phone at the service desk in Home Depot and call our only Lexus dealership in Charlotte to get their opinion. I get in touch with an intelligent sounding technician that tells me verbatim "I guarantee its the starter", so I'm like ok, how much? He says $1000! :o

I'm like :censored: I'm pretty much resigned to the fact that thats whats going to need to be done but before I call a tow truck I decide to play with the battery a bit...

I've already removed corrosion from my battery terminals before, but one of them has a little on it so I pour a Dr. Pepper over it to clear some out. Another neat thing I noticed is the little tool kit in the truck has a wrench that fits the bolts on the terminals so I figure I'll check them out. Turns out the "clamp cable" (I don't know the technical term ;)) that connects the battery to the starter? lifted right off the battery terminal. So I'm praying somehow it was making enough connection for everything else but not enough to turn the car over. I tried to tighten that clamp and those bolts wouldn't budge. Seems they are too corroded/ rusted? Not sure so I decide to actually bend the "clamp' so it makes a little better connection. I get back in my car, turn the key, not expecting anything and IT STARTED!! Man, I go from thinking its gonna cost me $1000 to it costing me the $1 for a Dr. Pepper! :D

Couple questions now.

1) Is there a battery cleaning solution that can maybe loosen up those bolts or do you think I'll have to replace the clamp/connector?

2) Is there ANY chance I still could have a starter problem?

Thanks for listening. :)

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If you left a low voltage situation for a while it would cause carbon to build up and cause a problem. I doubt it will have a problem now on. A toothbrush and some rust check spray works great for me . I used it yeaterday working on my fatherinlaws accord and it removed the corrosion on the terminals and turned the copper conduductors pink when i wiped them after i had to loosens them again. I was suprised it worked so amazing and leave a caoting to prevent corrosion.

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acf,

You've found the problem. Any cable that can just lift off the battery terminal would cause the car to click, click, click!

Most battery cables are made with built in terminal clamps....so you could just replace the whole thing. Still a cheap fix.

I do not think there is anything wrong with the starter.

99

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Cool thanks, and I'm curious, can labor for the starter be enough to charge $1000??

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What should the battery be cleaned with, I think the manual said baking soda and something else.

acf: I liked reading your story, for some reason it kind of remined me of some people.

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Cool thanks, and I'm curious, can labor for the starter be enough to charge $1000??

Believe it or not, that's not too far off! A little high, but still a monster :angry:

I'm sure its 4-6 hours labor....that starter is buried under the intake manifold and just a killer to get to ;)

99

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What should the battery be cleaned with, I think the manual said baking soda and something else.

acf: I liked reading your story, for some reason it kind of remined me of some people.

Yeah,

Baking soda with a little water and old toothbrush....

They actually make a "battery terminal" brush....you just pop it over the terminal and start twisting - the wire brush is circular and will clean it right up :D

Autozone or similar would surely have one....

99

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I almost bought one of thsoe brushes yesterday but decided just to get a couple multi-purpose wire brushes instead.

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