My i10 ever since i got it years ago had battery problems. If left for 4 days after a short trip, it discharged enough to not start again without jump starting. If long trip then expect 2 weeks. Is this normal or alternator problem? Mechanics just replaced battery.

Secondly, im looking for battery tender, and im thinking of getting solar charger because of no outlet, will that work ?

  • A car should last at least one week without charging. The culprit is most likely a power drain (dark current). Have the car checked by a competent mechanic. I once found a lojack in a car that the owner knew nothing about. The car was used and the device went bad, started killing the battery.
    – vini_i
    Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 15:30
  • It went through different mechanics over the years, they probably checked, I dont know. Its a small battery because a small car. Maybe because of excessive jump starts the battery worn out? Could a mechanic have damaged something in there at some point ?
    – Altoban
    Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 15:37
  • How many compression strokes does it take to start your engine? A modern engine in good condition should start in 2 or 3, even if it has been sitting unused a week or two. But if it routinely takes 10 or more before it fires, that will be much harder on your battery, and might explain why a "short trip" doesn't recharge it fully..
    – alephzero
    Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 16:34
  • Normal strokes, not a problem with engine.
    – Altoban
    Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 22:40

2 Answers 2


Bought years ago + small battery + chronic problem+ short trip + 4 days.

If the battery has been in use for more than 4 years, replace it. If it were me, I'd look through i10 forums and see if someone has been able to install a larger capacity battery without a major modification.

When replacing it have the battery connections to the block and body checked and the primary cable resistance measured and the clamps cleaned.

If the battery is less than 4 years old, my next thought is that your driving habits may not have been fully charging the battery.

Batteries can fail. If lead acid batteries are allowed to discharge they fail faster. If they aren't fully charged on a regular basis, they fail faster.

I would connect the battery to a smart charger, charge it until the charger indicated full charge. Disconnect the charger. Turn the headlamps on for 1 minute, then off. Wait 5 minutes and measure the battery terminal voltage.

Repeat the battery voltage measurement daily and see if it is declining. If so, either you aren't driving far enough between starts or the battery is failing.

With a battery more than 3 years old, I wouldn't worry about drive belts and alternators until I'd eliminated the battery as the problem.

  • Well, it depends. I recently had experience of a small 8 year old car, with the original battery never replaced, which had (for unplanned reasons - the driver was in hospital after a medical emergency) been sitting outside, never used, for 3 months in the middle of winter. The headlights still came on but the starter wouldn't crank. After half an hour on a battery charger, it fired up first time, and it's still running on the original battery 12 months later.
    – alephzero
    Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 16:40
  • The battery is just months old, all batteries it had experienced the same including original
    – Altoban
    Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 22:40
  • Eliminate driving habits first then check the connections at the starter. My mom had an "inexplicable" starting issue where battery was new, local shops tested the charging system, couldn't find anything,but the car would randomly not crank. A solar charger with a 4 amp output will maintain a charged battery during day with full sun.
    – P Schmied
    Commented Oct 19, 2018 at 20:08

Regarding a solar battery tender - I actually did this for a while with my car.

I'd recommend if you do this, get somewhere between a 5-10W solar panel, but also, get a solar charge controller!

If you don't get a charge controller, the solar panel may continue applying charge to your battery while it's full.

This won't cause significant damage to your battery in the short term but may cause gassing/slight leaking over time, as it is going to be overcharging your battery.

A charge controller will stop applying current once it reaches the appropriate voltage, reducing the risk of damaging your battery.

It's only a few watts that you'll be tendering the battery with, but still. I did that with my car for a while with a 5w panel and no charge controller for a while, and was amazed at how quickly corrosion started showing up on the positive terminal (over charge)

  • How do you know if your battery is full charged or not? I now managed to get solar charger working after removing the drain, but at max it gets to 12.58 volts when measured.
    – Altoban
    Commented Dec 25, 2018 at 17:08
  • 1
    Your battery is 'fully charged' at roughly 12.7-12.8v. If you're not getting up to this voltage, your battery isn't fully charged. However, if something electronic is on inside the vehicle (Or outside the vehicle, for example, headlights), the load will temporarily lower the voltage present at the battery. Make sure everything's off when you check the battery voltage for charge to get the most accurate readings. 12.6v isn't bad, the goal here is less to keep your battery at 100% and more to keep your battery at a charge level that can start the car.
    – schizoid04
    Commented Dec 27, 2018 at 18:27
  • 1
    If you can leave the car for 2-3 weeks without the voltage dropping significantly, you've got a winner; Most cars will discharge their battery in about 18-30 days (Or less if they have more electronics running); I found a need for a solar charger when I was in Phoenix and started riding a bike to work and only driving about once per month (and thus found myself with a dead battery as it had discharged). The solar charger solved the problem outright
    – schizoid04
    Commented Dec 27, 2018 at 18:28
  • I left the car for a week and stays at same voltage, not fully charged, I guess that's not bad. I will see if there is opportunity to test it for more weeks. Solar charger would not be enough though if I didn't cut off power to internal lights and radio do that's weird.
    – Altoban
    Commented Dec 31, 2018 at 18:49
  • If you disconnect that solar charger and measure the charger's output voltage, with the car parked where you're leaving it to charge, what's it read? If it's only outputting like 12-13 volts, that may be why. Most '12v' solar chargers really output 15-18v with low amperage when in full sun. Otherwise, it may not be putting out enough power to fully charge the battery / overcome the battery's internal resistance. Either way it should be fine, if it prevents battery from discharging, goal should be met.
    – schizoid04
    Commented Jan 1, 2019 at 20:09

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