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Greg Szczygiel
Greg Szczygiel, UK Car Mechanic
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 12
Experience:  Vehicle technician and electrician currently working in reputable independent garage in UK. Fully acredited ATA diagnostic technician.
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My 2010 i30 diesel estate sometimes doesn't start. Other electrical

Customer Question

My 2010 i30 diesel estate sometimes doesn't start. Other electrical equipment seems to function O.K.
The 1st time it happened the starter was turning the engine slower and slower, then it stopped and there was a clicking noise. I managed to start the engine with jump leads.
The second time the engine wouldn't start even with jump leads but it did start (albeit only just) after 5hrs of trickle charging. Subsequently I have used trickle charging only and the car always started OK when I have recharged or rather 'topped up' the battery in this way.
Contrary to advice and my general experience this car seems to start (better or at all) when the clutch pedal is NOT depressed. I and a couple of garage mechanics I have asked about it don't understand why that should be.
A few days ago I took the car to a dealer who had it overnight and concluded that the battery and the alternator are O.K., that there was no evidence of any parasitic drain and that the car should therefore be O.K.
Two days later (yesterday), the car didn't even seem to try turning the engine - what I got was just a clicking noise. This happened less than 24 hrs after a run of 60+ miles, so the battery should have been reasonably well charged.
I then trickle-charged it, left it overnight and today it started perfectly well. I then left the (dipped) lights on for ~3 minutes and repeated the exercise. The engine again started perfectly well. (I was monitoring the battery voltage and it was between 12.5 and 13 V at first, no lower than 11V while cranking the engine and between 14 and 15V once the engine was running.) So the battery does seem to be O.K. - unless it could be suffering from an intermittent collapse of a cell - can it ?
Finally, I rang the dealer and they now want the car week, to look faults, which isn't terribly convenient. Any thoughts or suggestions ???
Thanks, Muny
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Car
Expert:  Shantal-Mod replied 2 years ago.
Muny,
I'm Shantal and I'm a moderator topic.
I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.
I was checking to see if you had already found your answer or if you still need assistance from one of the Professionals.
Please let me know if you wish to continue waiting or if you would like to close your question?
Thank you,
Shantal
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

,

No, I haven't found an answer yet and will continue waiting if necessary.

Best regards, Muny

Expert:  Shantal-Mod replied 2 years ago.
Muny,
Thank you back to me and apologies that you have not received an answer yet. We have a range of Professionals online all the time. However specialties differ, and we are searching right professional to assist you.
Should you wish to close your question and reverse your charges at any time please let me know.
Thank you patience,
Shantal
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

again,

Not sure what information or reply from me you are after. I responded only a couple of days ago, saying that I would continue to wait if necessary.

I certainly did not imagine I'd be bombarded with meaningless e-mails.

If you can't find anybody with an answer to my problem please just say so and we'll close the question.

Best regards, Muny

Expert:  Greg Szczygiel replied 2 years ago.
Muny,
In order to help you locate the fault couple of things must be ruled out.
1.Poor engine/gearbox earth, try to connect jump lead between negative battery terminal and engine block to bypass, make sure there is good electrical connection.
2.When the starter just clicks what is the voltage of the battery?
3.When the key is turned in to start position and it clicks what is happening with dashboard lights.
It still could be the battery at fault, to rule this out try to disconnect it night and reconnect in the morning to see if it self drains.
I hope it helps.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

,

Thanks response !

1. I have tightened (only slightly) the earth connection cable clamp on the battery about a week ago and have not had the problem since.

2. I did not measure the voltage while the starter (if it was the starter) was just clicking. I will measure the voltage next time the clicking happens, if it does !

3. I don't think the dashboard lights went out during the clicking, they may have dimmed, not sure though. I will look out next time the clicking happens, if it does !

Thanks and regards, Muny

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

again,

I think that you provided a good and useful response. Just one point: there was a specific question in my original inquiry, regarding the possibility of an intermittent battery cell collapse: "...unless it [the battery] could be suffering from an intermittent collapse of a cell - can it ?"

Do you know if it can ?

Best regards, Muny

Expert:  Greg Szczygiel replied 2 years ago.
Muny.
Yes, the battery can suffer from intermittent collapse of single or more cells, the only problem is it can't be proven by any test.
Battery can't be opened or be seen inside to confirm cell collapse.
You have to think about the battery as one sole unit without going into detail of cells because one cell can't be replaced or fixed.
Only the whole battery can be diagnosed as faulty and replaced.
By using volt meter during cranking you can measure voltage drop, if the voltage doesn't drop significantly you can suspect faulty starter motor or ground connection issue.
Could you let me know what is the make and part number of your battery.
In reply I will give you the information of how low can the voltage drop on this specific battery.
I hope this gets us closer to pinpointing the fault.
Many thanks
Greg.
Greg Szczygiel, UK Car Mechanic
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 12
Experience: Vehicle technician and electrician currently working in reputable independent garage in UK. Fully acredited ATA diagnostic technician.
Greg Szczygiel and other Car Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

again,

Thanks !

The battery make is not obvious but it is the original battery fitted to Czech made i30s in 2010. The code and other specific information on it are: MF-54-26GL, 12V, RC:110 min CCA:600A

Hopefully that will give you the necessary information.

Thanks again and best regards, Muny

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

,

I did reply to your qustions above, this on Jan 17. Not heard back from you on that. No worries.

I have also rated your advice as good and paid the fee + tip (just under £5).

information, I have left the car with a franchised dealer week, it failed to start on day 5 when it was freezing. They then replaced the battery (after their tests repeatedly indicated the battery to be OK).

I just hope that it was the battery and the saga is over...

Best regards, Muny

Expert:  Greg Szczygiel replied 2 years ago.
Muny,
Thank You me know and rating.
It is possible the battery was at fault, you see sometimes intermittent faults on cars have to be diagnosed by replacing the parts.
So now the batter is new, if the problem will show up again other parts will have to be checked.
I'm standing by if you need any further assistance and I hope your car is fixed now.
Greg

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