Battery died, car died after driing through puddle


HypnosisLady
01-11-2006, 12:44 AM
I drove through a large puddle, it was dark & raining hard. My car first lost its power steering, then the lights began to fade, then everything began to fade. The fan stopped working, the wipers stopped working, the lights died and then the car died. After about 2 hours the car started and still has problems with power steering, and battery light on along with the ABS light and the airbag light. I stopped the car after about 5 minutes of running it and tried to restart and only got clicking.

Is my car ok? Shot?? Please tell me that this is not serious.

Thank you,
Robin

way2old
01-11-2006, 07:34 AM
Look closely at the belt to be sure it did not break or come off the pulleys first. Have the battery charged and see if it will start. If it does, have the charging system checked.

Cntrysthbst
01-11-2006, 08:27 AM
Best thing to do is pop the hood and let it dry out. I live in Florida and have had this happen to me alot. You will cause problems with the car if you run it when it's wet in the engine compartment. The main thing I end up replacing when this happens is the belt. Next is the alternator. I've noticed that the belt loves to grab the water thats splashed on it from underneath and bring it right up to the alternator and distributor. When the alternator gets wet it can damage alot, short curcuit elec. engine parts. All the electrical connectors in the engine compartment are supposed to have alittle clear grease in them to help keep the water out but the engine compartment runs so hot most of the time the grease liquifies and in time nothing is sealing the connectors. When you go through water those connectors get wet and cause alot of problems. This is one big reason why you should not run your car if it is doing what you mentioned. It can cost you alot of money. I've had this happen to me so many times I had to grease everyone of my connectors. Those connectors will hold water too, even if the engine is dry. My wife just filled me in on a couple more things that get wet going through a puddle, the distributor, and the VAPS steering unit. I could go on and on. I guess the best thing about this is that any electrical damage will show a check engine light, which you have not mentioned.

When it is dry, I disconnect my negative to reset the computer just in case I have a code that was temp due to the water. If the check engine light comes on after that you need to do a code scan on it. If no light, great, but do check your belt, mine gets nice and shiney and real smooth which is not good. And your distributor cap.

Serious or not! You can never tell on these cars! My wife and I refer to these problems as X-files! Good luck!

PS. I have no clue to the year of your car, and engine size, that information helps when posting! This info we gave you is off a 93 Mercury Sable LS 3.8L. Others years are simular up to 95.

HypnosisLady
01-11-2006, 11:00 AM
Look closely at the belt to be sure it did not break or come off the pulleys first. Have the battery charged and see if it will start. If it does, have the charging system checked.


Thank you. I will look for this belt. I have no idea, but I am sure I will recognize what a belt looks like.

Is this an easy fix??

Yes, I know nothing about cars. argh!

Robin

HypnosisLady
01-11-2006, 11:03 AM
Best thing to do is pop the hood and let it dry out. I live in Florida and have had this happen to me alot. You will cause problems with the car if you run it when it's wet in the engine compartment. The main thing I end up replacing when this happens is the belt. Next is the alternator. I've noticed that the belt loves to grab the water thats splashed on it from underneath and bring it right up to the alternator and distributor. When the alternator gets wet it can damage alot, short curcuit elec. engine parts. All the electrical connectors in the engine compartment are supposed to have alittle clear grease in them to help keep the water out but the engine compartment runs so hot most of the time the grease liquifies and in time nothing is sealing the connectors. When you go through water those connectors get wet and cause alot of problems. This is one big reason why you should not run your car if it is doing what you mentioned. It can cost you alot of money. I've had this happen to me so many times I had to grease everyone of my connectors. Those connectors will hold water too, even if the engine is dry. My wife just filled me in on a couple more things that get wet going through a puddle, the distributor, and the VAPS steering unit. I could go on and on. I guess the best thing about this is that any electrical damage will show a check engine light, which you have not mentioned.

When it is dry, I disconnect my negative to reset the computer just in case I have a code that was temp due to the water. If the check engine light comes on after that you need to do a code scan on it. If no light, great, but do check your belt, mine gets nice and shiney and real smooth which is not good. And your distributor cap.

Serious or not! You can never tell on these cars! My wife and I refer to these problems as X-files! Good luck!

PS. I have no clue to the year of your car, and engine size, that information helps when posting! This info we gave you is off a 93 Mercury Sable LS 3.8L. Others years are simular up to 95.

She is now pulling her hair, running screaming from the room.

thank you, I will check the belt first, disconnect the battery (negative), pray, and then turn it all back on. It will then by devine design work like the amazing car it is, and will be perfect for me in every way....

I hereby promise to never drive through a puddle again, seen or unseen. Here in the Pacific NW that is hard to do, I will succeed!


Robin

HypnosisLady
01-11-2006, 04:17 PM
Look closely at the belt to be sure it did not break or come off the pulleys first. Have the battery charged and see if it will start. If it does, have the charging system checked.

The belt is off the pulley. I drove probably about 5-7 miles with it like that until it died. Would I have overheated my car to the point of destroying the engine by doing this?

Robin

HypnosisLady
01-11-2006, 04:17 PM
Look closely at the belt to be sure it did not break or come off the pulleys first. Have the battery charged and see if it will start. If it does, have the charging system checked.

The belt is off the pulley. I drove probably about 5-7 miles with it like that until it died. Would I have overheated my car to the point of destroying the engine by doing this?

Robin

HypnosisLady
01-11-2006, 04:18 PM
Look closely at the belt to be sure it did not break or come off the pulleys first. Have the battery charged and see if it will start. If it does, have the charging system checked.

The belt is off the pulley. I drove probably about 5-7 miles with it like that until it died. Would I have overheated my car to the point of destroying the engine by doing this?

Robin

way2old
01-11-2006, 07:18 PM
Only way to find out is to charge or replace the battery and see if it will start. If it was raining hard as you say, you might get lucky and the cool water kept the engine cool enough. If it starts, replace belt, thermostat and change antifreeze. Good luck.

Banjoman10
01-12-2006, 10:07 AM
Just curious: You didn't have the alternator warning light come right on? With the belt off, it should have come on immediately after the loss of the belt. And later the engine warning should have lit-up if it was overheating, never mind the temp. gauge. I don't mean to scold, but the warning lights and gauge(s) serve a purpose, they are not for decoration. Nobody should ignore them for any reason, and I should add, that ignoring them can be very costly - such as a new engine. European drivers are required to know and understand engine mechanicals (in addition to better driving skills) before they are granted a license. Having been driving over there too, I must say, those skills and knowledge should be required here also.

Cntrysthbst
01-13-2006, 05:12 PM
ok, sorry it took so long to get back. I agree with way2old. Water is not going to just make your belt fall off, theres a reason it fell off. Did you get the belt fixed? There are some other things you should check after you get that done, you may have a bad tensioner, bent pulley, etc.. Do you have just one belt? Do you have the 3.8? Thats helpful. The ac compressor can lock up and cause your belt to come off also.

and banjoman, about the europian driving thing. If they are that serious about the gauges, why do they even let ford/mercury tarus/sables over there to be drivin in the first place? Just curious!

Banjoman10
01-14-2006, 09:41 AM
Cntrysthbst to your knee-jerk reaction:1 Tauruses are NOT sold in Europe. 2. If you re-read my letter I wrote about required knowledge of engine MECHANICALS, not about gauges. 3. Tauruses/Sables brought over to EU need to be modified to be licensed and regiustered - to amber directional lights in particular, that I'm aware of, but there may be other things also. 4. European cars are better than american (unfortunately); have you heard about: BMW, Mercedes, Volvo, Saab, Volkswagen? - to name just the brands sold here. I think Citroens are better also, BTW. But I do think the Land Rover is junk. 5. Mercedeses are not that particularly expensive over there, last time I looked, there were 10(!) models of Mercedes cheaper than a Nissan Maxima. Mercedeses, and BMWs as well, are overpriced in the US for the American status-concious market, and if we take out the VAT (value added tax) which is from 15 to 25% - dependinng on the particular EU country, then they are cheaper still. However, VW Passats cost less here, then in Germany. I happen to like Tauruses, I have two, plus a Sable, but my next cars will likely to be the ones, that give a much longer warranty, than the miserly 36/36, because the dealer's charges are ridiculous for both parts and labor after the warranty period is over. For example, my local dealer charges $90 for an ODBII reading. I have my own laptop based reader, but to them it doesn't count, they say: "we have to do our own" and then they hit you with the $90. Obviously, they can't stop laughing at us...

Cntrysthbst
01-15-2006, 07:29 AM
About your reply banjo?! We meant to add mechanical to the statement as well, I think you went alittle over board! You apparently have not had the problems we've had owning these cars. We've owned 4 Sables, put almost a million miles on them combined and have nothing good to say about them except the Sable is a nice looking car! Having mechanical know how and knowing how to read idiot lights does not always solve your problems on these cars.

And about that Import stuff, If you think its expensive on American cars after a warranty is up, We do not recommend you go buy an Import. Buying a car is a gamble, some are good, some are bad, and that goes for Imports too.

Millermagic
01-15-2006, 07:42 PM
About your reply banjo?! We meant to add mechanical to the statement as well, I think you went alittle over board! You apparently have not had the problems we've had owning these cars. We've owned 4 Sables, put almost a million miles on them combined and have nothing good to say about them except the Sable is a nice looking car! Having mechanical know how and knowing how to read idiot lights does not always solve your problems on these cars.

And about that Import stuff, If you think its expensive on American cars after a warranty is up, We do not recommend you go buy an Import. Buying a car is a gamble, some are good, some are bad, and that goes for Imports too.
I have nothing bad to say about the Taurus / Sable. But there are a few bad ones that get out on the market.

I'm going with everyone else here, charging system.

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