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Low Battery: Start Engine - Battery fine...Alternator working great

Discussion in 'LR4' started by machmike, Mar 16, 2020.

  1. machmike

    machmike Full Access Member

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    Hi,

    My LR4 just rolled over 50k (out of warranty) I am literally at 50,007 on the odometer. My car has been giving me a warning over the last three days "Low Battery Warning: Star Engine".

    Does land rover have covert code to force them to break at exactly 50,001k? o_O


    Being serious now,
    I tested the battery with the truck off at 12+v, and under load with lights and everything on at 14.75v. So that seems to be OK. The batteries were both replaced 2 years ago as the factory ones were not great. The JLR dealer put Interstate in the Truck.

    I was dreading an alternator issue but this doesn't seem to be the case. The battery seems to be just fine as well. I am experiencing zero functionality issues with the truck and it hasn't been too cold here in Colorado.

    Any ideas? I currently do NOT own an OBD GAP tool. I do plan on getting one soon. I was waiting for the warranty to expire.

    Thanks
    Mike
     
  2. GreatNorthern

    GreatNorthern Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    My 2014 LR4 (about 65K miles) showed me the same display, “Low Battery Warning” a few months ago. I chalked it up to a lot of night driving putting a higher than usual load on the battery. This LR also gets less than regular use, meaning that it’s been known to sit unused for several weeks at a time. The battery was 2 years old. My assumption, then, was battery sulfation, a pretty common problem when a vehicle sits for any period of time. The good news is that there are a number of de-sulfation (sometimes called “Reconditioning”) chargers on the market. I use either an Optimate4 or the Dewalt DXAEC80 smart charger (both on Amazon). Be sure to disconnect the + terminal at the battery before you clamp the charger leads on, as this type of charger sends out “spikey” DC pulses that could disrupt the often delicate LR electrical system.

    1) check Interstate for any warranty coverage
    2) if none: Recondition your battery.

    Bob
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2020
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  3. roverman

    roverman Full Access Member

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    Is it just a quick message that pops up right as you’re starting the truck? My 2013 has done it semi regularly since I got it in 2015. I bought a new battery early on after seeing it, pretty much ignored it since. Although I’m due for a new battery anyway.
     
  4. machmike

    machmike Full Access Member

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    Talking with JC 4x4 they seem to think the charging system logic board just needs to be reset, or the battery is having issues even though its reading 12v+. Like a short or something in the battery itself.

    Bob, I also have a MINI (2011 S) with only 23k on it. It appears we love automotive agony. That thing has been a handful.
     
  5. ktm525

    ktm525 Full Access Member

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    12V is not precise enough. Use a multimeter.

    A few minutes after shutting off engine:

    12.8V is a healthy 100% battery
    12.4V is 50% discharged
    11.8 is toast.
     
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  6. machmike

    machmike Full Access Member

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    I did use a multimeter, its how I got my numbers 14.75v under full load. The battery is fine and read just over your listed healthy number in the thousandth range, the alternator is showing functional. I appreciate the full numbers though, those are extremely useful to know.

    JLR said a remote possibility exists the battery has a sort of short which would give a proper number and still kick off the warning. I probably would have experienced other issues. JLR said the control unit for the ignition system probably just needs to be reset as this isn't an uncommon occurrence with the LR4. They want $145. Which I don't intend to pay.

    I'm going to buy my neighbors GAP tool as his LR4 was totaled and his wife replaced it with a forester :(. He has never used it.
     
  7. ktm525

    ktm525 Full Access Member

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    Ok i misread your post I think. Don't run your truck. Turn the lights on for a minute. Now what voltage is your multimeter giving you?
     
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  8. jlach993

    jlach993 Full Access Member

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    So the LR4 is a weird truck when it comes to battery issues. First of all, upgrade the stock battery to an H8 AGM battery. It fits in the stock location plumply. Secondly, your battery will test fine after shutting the truck off even if the battery is shot. You have to give it an hour without the car on and then test it. You’ll get the real number. I had a bad battery that tested at 12.5v after shutting the engine off, then test 11.8 an hour later. Third, in regards to the low battery message, i’ve been getting that message for the past year on my LR4. You could be cheap/lazy and nurse the battery by not using any accessories while the truck is off and just use it to start the truck. That means no radio or lights when the truck is off. Eventually when the battery gets worst you’ll get faulty errors on your dash unrelated to a battery issue. I had a suspension fault that went away when i changed my battery 3 years ago. The last sign is a truck that won’t turn over. H7 stock flooded batteries like what the LR came with last exactly 2 years. H8 AGMs last 4 years with my experience.
     
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  9. ktm525

    ktm525 Full Access Member

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    My resting voltage is 11.8 on my 5 year old Interstate MTP/49-H8. I think I killed the old girl when I left my lights on for 6 hours at -10 and it still managed to start. H8 and it's extra reserve capacity for the win. Even though my experience with the Interstate MTP was good I "upgraded" to an Energizer AGM H8 through Costco. It was $100 cheaper than the interstate AGM (MTX) and on par with the flooded MTP. Costco's warranty on the Energizer is awesome. Free replacement first five years then something like 50% for the next 5.
     
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  10. Strizzo

    Strizzo Active Member

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    This is not necessarily accurate. I've seen batteries that could hardly light the brake lights show 13+ volts with the engine off. Your alternator charging at 14.75 with the truck running seems to imply that it thinks the battery charge state is low. I would get the battery tested at your local auto parts store to be sure.

    If you've replaced the battery, i think there is a setting that needs to be reset in the ecu to make it know the battery is new again.
     
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