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The answer was that the battery was bad. Apparently it was a cheap battery and the failed alternator drained it. Once it had been drained, it would no longer hold a charge. Replacing the batter with a new, good-quality (VW) battery fixed the problem entirely. One clue was that when I jumpstarted the car, all the symptoms went away -- no blinking lights ...


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When you turn the car off and remove the key, make sure the steering is not turned to one side. If you leave the car with the wheels turned you may load up the steering lock as the steering geometry tries to straighten up. You are able to get round this in the circumstances you describe by 'rocking' the steering wheel to relieve the loading on the lock as ...


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Your mechanic seems to have repaired the fault by replacing the alternator. A faulty alternator will drain the battery as you describe and can be quite dramatic in causing other symptoms.



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