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Old 03-13-2015
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: louisville ky
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Help with a strange group of symptoms?

This completely came out of the blue. I had been on a 20 mile trip, parked the vehicle for about 10 minutes went out to start and had nothing. Checked the battery cables and the battery which read 12.6 volts. I put a Harbor Freight battery pack on it and tried to start, got a very weak turnover for a few seconds. I was going to position the truck so I could jump it with another vehicle but I can't get it out of park.

Is it normal to not be able to get this vehicle out of park when the battery is dead? Could these symptoms be the brake switch? Is there a way to overide this so I can at least position the truck?

It's raining now and I didn't want to get under this to look at the starter terminals. Is there any troubleshooting I can do at the starter to track this down? Acts like a bad cable would act but the connections at the battery are squeaky clean and tight. Thanks for any help!!
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Old 03-13-2015
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 7,601
2006 Ranger will have "Smart Charging", this can make the battery last longer but it MUST BE a Silver Calcium battery, not the normal lead acid car battery, smart charger will ruin lead acid battery.
You also should NOT jump start this system, you can disconnect the battery and charge it, just don't do it with battery connected.

So at 9 year old is the battery factory original or has it been replaced, and was it replaced with a Silver Calcium battery?
I think it was replaced.

If battery has 12.6volts it is probably fairly new, I would guess 2 maybe 3 years old.
And I would also guess the problem is the starter motor, not the battery.
The fact that is was just driven, so charged up and after trying to start engine it still shows 12.6v reads like it has plenty of juice, and the fact you added more juice with battery pack and the starter slowly moved means to me that the starter is drawing too many amps.

It could just be a corroded cable on the starter motor end, I assume the battery end looks fine, but more likely problem at 9 years would be starter motor failing.
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