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Old 03-09-2010, 06:20 AM   #1
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Battery dead - subsequent possible ignition problems

Hi
I stupidly left my '98 Boxster for too long between drives and when I went to start it, it tried but not enough power then just heard the solenoid sound. Really needed to get it started so hooked charger up and tried starting it. No joy. Anyway have decided to get new battery - all should be fine. Have checked what to do when reconnecting etc.

However, during trying to start my engine i'm not sure whether the ignition has gone? Ever since I have no power the ignition key seems like it wants to stay in the second position rather than the first where you can withdraw it easily. Is this normal for a dead battery ignition. Or am I looking at having to replace the ignition as well as a battery?

Help!


Last edited by smeech; 03-09-2010 at 08:16 AM.
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:01 AM   #2
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Ignition (starter) switch is Kaput. Cheap, easy fix.

NEVER try to start the car with a battery charger hooked up to it!

That is unless you actually enjoy shelling out thousands of dollars ('s in your case) to replace fried electronics!

If you need to recharge the battery, recharge it and wait. If you make you electronics go Blooey, you'll wish you had.

Cheers!
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Old 03-09-2010, 03:24 PM   #3
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+1 on what LB says - whatever made you think connecting a battery charger would help start the car?? The starter motor pulls over 100 amps turning over the engine while a charger delivers less than 10 amps......

As to removing the key, sometimes the springs in the lock get worn (a heavy bunch of keys on your fob don't help) so a new ignition switch may be required. Its not a difficult job as long as you're not 6'2" tall, as you have to get under the steering wheel to install.
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Old 03-15-2010, 05:28 AM   #4
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I panicked! Urgently needed to get car started and went a bit loopy.

Strangely enough I am 6'2". I am buying a new battery. Is it worth buying that first and trying to start and seeing if that sorts out the ignition switch or do you think it is definitely gone?
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Old 03-15-2010, 07:29 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smeech
I panicked! Urgently needed to get car started and went a bit loopy.

Strangely enough I am 6'2". I am buying a new battery. Is it worth buying that first and trying to start and seeing if that sorts out the ignition switch or do you think it is definitely gone?
The car will still probably start with the failing switch.

However, from what you have described regarding the ignition switch, and because the ignition switches fail and fail often on Boxsters (and other Porsches), I'd say you should replace the switch. If you buy the Audi part number and DIY it's only around $10.

The Audi Part Number, a/k/a/ the "new and improved" part....4A0-905-849-B, recognized as the replacement ignition switch part of choice for 986's and 996's.

Regards, Maurice.
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Old 03-15-2010, 09:20 AM   #6
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So do you think I should try the battery first in case this rectifies the situation and then get the ignition switch if needs be? If I do this should I then disconnect the battery if the ignition is still dodgy?
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Old 03-15-2010, 09:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smeech
So do you think I should try the battery first in case this rectifies the situation and then get the ignition switch if needs be? If I do this should I then disconnect the battery if the ignition is still dodgy?
Yes. I would buy (or order) the ignition switch in the meantime as it is nearly certain, from what you have described with the switch, that the switch will have to be replaced. Better replace it now than have it leave you stranded.

Go to Mike Focke's Boxster Pages for a nice DIY on the switch.

If you install the battery first, you should disconnect the cable from the negative terminal of the battery before you do ANY electrical work on the car.

If your Boxster's radio requires a security code, make sure you have that on hand before disconnecting the battery.

Regards, Maurice.
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Old 03-15-2010, 10:31 AM   #8
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Did any lights flicker as well? If so it's probably the battery...My starter made a sound like it was trying to turn over....and the lights flickered...windows went up and down...replaced the battery and it was fine.
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Old 03-15-2010, 10:33 AM   #9
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Thoughts

What I'd do.

Remove battery from car. Take to battery selling place. Have them charge and load test the battery (there is a specific "tool" to do this. About $100 to buy a good one.) and if bad, you replace the battery. Worst case you pay for the charge.

You don't need a Porsche battery, one under $100 would do. List of batteries known to fit is on my site. Link also discussion on how to test a battery there.

Replace battery with a charged battery and try to start. If that fails, then replace the ignition switch.
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Old 03-16-2010, 12:45 AM   #10
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Thanks all
My current (excuse the pun) battery is a bosch, but it's a sealed unit (no maintenance). Mike your website infers that it should be a low maintenance battery. Does this matter?
I would also add that this is not the first time the discharge of battery has happened and this time it truly is dead as a dodo that's why I was thinking of replacing.
I'll do what you guys say and see what happens!
Thanks again. Very much appreciated. At least a lesson learnt!


Last edited by smeech; 03-16-2010 at 01:17 AM.
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