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I bought my 2005 Honda Accord in 2019. I have driven it a handful of times, other than that it has been sitting in my driveway. I bought a new battery for it today and put it on the car. When I turn the key the lights and all the electricity comes on. The radio, headlights, dome lights, all that works. But when I try to start the car it will click one or two times, but won't turn over. Could it be the spark plug or ?

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  • When you try to start the car and it clicks, do the lights dim? If so, how much?
    – marcelm
    Mar 8, 2023 at 13:33

3 Answers 3

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Possibilities -

  • Corrosion at the battery terminals causing a bad connection
  • Bad connection from the battery to the chassis of the vehicle
  • Bad connection from the battery to the starter solenoid
  • Seized starter solenoid
  • Corroded contacts within the starter solenoid
  • Faulty starter motor
  • Seized engine
  • Bad engine earth strap connection

I would start with the easy tasks of checking for corrosion on the battery terminal connectors and the thick wires that are connected these connectors.

Try turning the engine over a little using a wrench on the crankshaft pulley to check that the engine hasn't seized due to being left for so long.

To answer your suggestion of the spark plus - Unless one of your spark plugs has snapped and dropped inside the cylinder (extremely unlikely), which would stop the piston moving, the spark plugs wont be causing the issue.

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  • 2
    I'd like to add a possibility: the new battery is faulty or almost discharged. Normally, you'd expect a new battery to come at least half charged, but you never know.
    – marcelm
    Mar 8, 2023 at 13:34
  • @marcelm That is a possibility. Why not add an answer of your own, I will upvote it.
    – HandyHowie
    Mar 8, 2023 at 13:54
  • @marcelm I second the possibility that the battery might be faulty / not charged! It does happen. Mar 8, 2023 at 14:18
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Do you have a remote car starter or any wires dangling?

Probably an uncommon one, but just in case: I started having occasional dead battery a few months back. Sometimes the car would start and then die, or not start at all. I had done the normal of checks: load testing the battery, load testing the alternator, cleaning the battery and wire contacts. Ultimately, I replaced the battery, but started having trouble again a week later. Finally, I took it to the dealership. I got a call that they didn't find anything. Later when I went to pick the car up they told me they went to move the car it died again. They found a loose wire under the dash. They removed the wire. Car is fine now.


Backstory

I had a remote car starter that no longer worked. Part of my remote starter includes a module stuck under the dash. The module had come unstuck and was hanging by the wires, probably why it didn't work 😉. I ended up removing the module, and had completely forgotten about it and hadn't gotten around to getting it repaired.

It turns out I didn't notice that one wire was still there dangling 🤦‍♂️. Apparently, the wire was sometimes shorting out the remote car starter circuit/ignition and was the cause of all this.

I've learned my lesson. Perhaps my mistake will help someone else.

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You say you just changed the battery. So, a few things to check:

  1. Are the cable connections to the battery fully tightened down and gripping the battery terminal tightly? Loose connections may carry sufficient current to drive lights, but won't carry enough power to turn the starter motor. You should also spray both the positive and negative terminal connections with battery terminal spray (basically clear spray lacquer with a little color (usually red or green) added so you can see where you've sprayed it, but can still see the terminal and cable ends). This helps prevent terminal and cable corrosion..
  2. Are the cells in the battery full of acid to the top? If not, add DISTILLED WATER to bring them up to the top of the cell. Pour the water into a measuring cup then slowly add water to each cell, pouring the water through a funnel to ensure the water goes into the cell. If you have to do this you'll want to charge the battery afterwards.
  3. A battery that's been sitting may need to be charged - it may be putting out rated voltage, but without sufficient power to drive the starter motor and spin the engine. I suggest investing in a good battery charger.

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