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I've compiled a few quotes from several posts made by 4.3 owners who have had starting issues and other problems that turned out to be a failing battery. The original battery that came from the factory seems to have an average life span of about 3 years. Many of these batteries slowly get weaker resulting in extended cranking times when the engine is cold. Others seem to fail all at once with no warning. I'm posting this as a reference for anyone who might be wondering why their RAV is taking longer to start:

February 5, 2010

patrick_ashour said:
Hi Friends,
My 2007 RAV4 V6, recently having some issues, when starting for the first time in the morning, or after 5-6 hours of inactivity, it takes more than usual time to get ignited.
when the engine is warm, the first ignition is starting the car, but when it's cold, it takes 2-3 time or 4-5 seconds to hold ignition key to start the car.

Does anybody experienced such a problem ?
what are the options to fix it ?

Thanks,
February 8, 2010

patrick_ashour said:
After unsuccessful attempts with changing gas brand, grade, air filter and all other fuel related issues, finally I decided to change the battery and that was the solution, so far after 3 days of changing the battery, the issue is gone and everything is back to normal.

Thanks for you advices and helping me to resolve the problem.

February 8, 2010

john1928 said:
I have a 2007 V6 RAV with ~31K miles on it.

Up until yesterday when I drove home from work the RAV ran fine. This morning when I went to start it, it behaved normally lights/fans/cranking at what seemed like full power for perhaps half to one second, then nothing, no lights, no fan, no cranking. Turning on the dome light manually it was very dim.

I thought that perhaps a door was left open, or a light left on to drain the battery so I popped the shift button out, put it in neutral and pushed it out of the garage and next to our other car to try to jump it. I hooked up the cables and after a couple minutes tried to start it and it fired right off. I let it sit idling for about 10 minutes without any issue. Problem solved or so I though.

I closed the hood, put away the jumpper cables, etc. and headed for work. I could tell right away that something was not quite right. Whenever I would use moderate throttle the radio/dashlights would dim and all/most of the dummy indicators would illuminate, the engine would continue running while this happened. I turned around about a block from the house and drove home. I also noticed that there was a bit of flicker to the dome light and the odometer illumination on the dash.

Does this sound like a bad battery, a bad connection, or something else that could have simply failed from one day to the next?
February 8, 2010

john1928 said:
Thanks for the help everyone. It was in fact the battery, when trying to turn the key the voltage would drop to ~3.3V.

No idea why it was functional yesterday and toast this morning, but it's back up and running now.

June 8, 2010

Forest said:
Our 2007 had the hard starting problem the last few days in the morning and I was thinking perhaps fuel pump check valve. This morning the dreaded click.click.click sound of a dead battery. Ran to Costco, new battery, RAV starts great, life's good!
July 25, 2010

darklord said:
Just this morning, I can't start my 07 RAV4 the car. I gave it a boost from another car and it started fine. But if the car slowed down, the lights on the dahsboard, AWD, Oil, you name it, would light up but the car is still drivable. I drove like that for 20 mintues, and stopped. This time the car cannot be started even with a boost.

To me this could be either the battery or the alternator. But it didn't look like the alternator because it was driving fine after the 1st boost for 20 mintues. So if it must be the battery but how can a three year old battery be dead?
July 26, 2010

darklord said:
Got the RAV4 fixed and it was the battery. The dealership gave me a Toyota
Premium COPBS-8424F battery to replace the original one and they look
different.

Come to think that I might have seen a tell tale sign of the battery dying
last winter, when there were couple of instances that the car would crank
hard to start in some not too cold mornings. I simply thought it's an 07 car,
what could go wrong and paid no heed to the symptons. Thanks for the
advice, I would stick to a 3 year battery replacement period as insurance
since a battery is not that expensive.
August 17, 2010

SeriousBlack said:
Ok, I have a question. I have a 2006 Toyota RAV4 V6 with 109,000 miles on it now. This past week, in the mornings, it is taking like 3 attempts to start. I was planning to change out the spark plugs at 120,000 miles. The BlackMobiles seems to run fine. It starts on the first try when warm. I've read about when it takes longer to start it could be the battery and replace it pretty quick because it might go dead all the sudden. I'll probably start with the battery tomorrow, but just wanted to see what you guys think. I'm on the stock battery and stock spark plugs.
August 18, 2010

SeriousBlack said:
Just did get it replaced. The guy said it tested ok. He did mention something about it dropping to an 8 on the second test (I don't know what that means). I figured to go ahead a get a new battery and hope it will last just as long (over 100,000 miles). We shall see if this makes a difference over the next couple weeks with the early morning starts.
August 21, 2010

SeriousBlack said:
Hey thanks RAVolution76! So far, the battery seems to have been the issue, but I want to wait a couple weeks before claiming victory. I didn't get any fancy battery. I went to AutoZone and got a Duralast 24F-DLG for 89.99 installed. It does have a yellow top :lol:
August 20, 2010

chewy2314 said:
Glad I found this thread. my '07 RAV4 V6 Limited is at the currently at the dealer for this same issue: difficulty with cold start, no issue with warm start.

This issue started about 3 weeks ago. Dealer had it overnight (outside in Roseville,CA) but supposedly fired up right away. I park it in the garage, so i'm thinking they tried it after the sun was up and heated up the engine compartment.

I'll post if my dealer finds the issue.

edit: just talked to the dealer. my battery is testing at only 280CCA (battery is rated at 550CCA). so i'll be changing the battery and report back.
August 23, 2010

chewy2314 said:
Well, i'm here to report that a new battery fixed my starting issue. starts like a champ now for the last couple of mornings.
August 23, 2010

dj06482 said:
I've been seeing these same symptoms on our original battery over the past week, so today I checked the voltage across the terminals and got 12.5V. I pulled the battery and will take it to AutoZone for a full work-up.

First start generally cranks for a while, and I've even had to turn off and try again on a few occasions. Hot starts are typically fine...

Just got back from Autozone, they set the old battery to 500 amps and it wasn't even doing that. So, in my case it was the battery. I'll be installing the new one tonight, we got about 4.25 years out of the original. I've seen original batteries go much longer in other cars, but I guess we actually did pretty well considering the experiences of some others on here.

I am thankful it went gradually as opposed to all at once...
September 2, 2010

computerguy25 said:
This past week my '08 Limited 2WD V6 with OEM battery started taking a few seconds longer to start up. I can hear the starter working but the engine doesn't turn over until after about 2-3 seconds. Previously the engine would start right up within a second. It happened once on Sunday after the car was sitting a day and a half in the garage. Then it happened to me again 2 other times this week when I started the car leaving work. I don't get the problem when the car is fully warmed up and I try to start it up then. After reading through the forums this sounds like the first sign of my battery going bad.
September 7, 2010

computerguy25 said:
Thanks for all the feedback guys. I went to Autozone and compared the Duralast 24F-DL and Duralast 24F-DLG and they looked the same as far as placement of the posts and size. The guy at the store looked up my RAV in the computer and again the Duralast 24F-DLG was not listed so it appears the main Autozone database is not correct.

I installed the battery with no problems and it fit perfectly. Even the thin plastic heat shield that wrapped around my original OEM battery fit on the new one.

My old battery did test a little low so hopefully my start issues go away.
September 16, 2010

7tisix said:
That was my problem, delayed starting. Doesn't sound like the battery, but in my experience with this problem, it is. The factory battery is a POS.
September 20, 2010

Oldguy said:
I had the problem of requiring several trys to start the engine on my 2007 V6 after setting overnight. The engine seemed to turn over normally each try but did not fire until the fourth or fifth try. I then used another vehicle to jump the battery for the first start of the day and it started immediately each of 3 days. I then bought a new battery and it started on the first try for the past 5 days.

If the battery is not the single cause of the problem, a new battery seems to overcome the problem for some yet to be determined period of time. If anyone discovers another cause please post it.

October 23, 2010

savvy said:
This has started happening over the last week and it is quite strange

When the engine is cold I seem to need to crank longer than when it is warm (which will immediately start). The battery is charged fully and the cranking sounds strong. I cleaned the contacts of the battery and its terminals with no luck. Any ideas on what this could be?
October 26, 2010

savvy said:
I love this site. I was thinking "there's no way my 3 year old battery is dying - I've been recharging it and its *only* 3 years old".... then I come here and confirm the weird cranking and flashing lights behavior and how many people are having batteries die.

Bought an Autozone Duralast Gold 24 last night. Fits fine with the heat shield in my 2007 V6 Limited.

We'll see if the cranking is fixed after a few cold starts.

It was the battery!!!!

Starts like a charm and the 24 size fits no problem even with the heat shield.

I'm so happy, thanks everyone for the help
 

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I suspect that what all the quoted cars have in common is their batteries needed to be replaced well before they actually were. And if properly load tested they would all have failed.
According to this site http://autorepair.about.com/library/weekly/aa101604c.htm
a good fully charged 12 volt battery won't drop below 9 volts while cranking unless it's below freezing. Yet, thanks to Toyota, our RAVs will still start, albeit somewhat slower, at 8 volts with a battery that's on its "tenth life." That's why the "just replace the battery" answers usually turn out to be right.

Philosophy: On the first page the site says, "If you only think about (testing it) once a year, fall would be a good time to go outside and spend some quality time with your battery." Yeah, like that's gonna happen! It's maintenance free isn't it? Instead we'll run it into the ground, beat a dead battery and then complain it was junk from Toyota that let me down. But we get even more POed if someone tries to sell us something we didn't absolutely need.

As for me I will use it all up but replace it one start before my wife gets stranded!
I use batteries, usually from Walmart, with a 5-year warranty with 3-year free replacement warranty.

BTW, I wonder how long the 100-month (8 years, 4 months) Honda battery that came in my used Accord will last?
 

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Sounds just like my Mazda. Ensure the battery dies just after 3 years so that it's not under warranty anymore.

junebug, thanks for making this thread too. It's really informative and now I know what to look for if the battery starts dying. I wish there was some resource like this when I had my Mazda cause that battery died on New Years Day when everything was closed and I was parked illegally too.
 

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Batteries can last anywhere from 18 months to 84+ months.....

It all depends on.........
Where you live, heat and cold kill batteries.
How much extra load you put on it.
How often you charge it, either by driving or charging.
Do you let the water level go down by not servicing it (Maintenance)

I know of batteries lasting for years and others for months.....

Bottom line is: Do proper maintenance and be aware of poor battery performance so you do not get stranded. :shock:

Yuma,
 

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Bottom line is: Do proper maintenance and be aware of poor battery performance so you do not get stranded. Shocked

Every 6 months I add distilled water. Seems that it takes about a cup and a half each time. That would be 9 cups by the end of 3 years-enough to kill a battery?
 

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Yuma said:
Bottom line is: Do proper maintenance and be aware of poor battery performance so you do not get stranded. :shock:

Yuma,
But Toyota says the batteries are maintenance free! :)

Anyways, I really hate how the sight bubble is covered. I remember before, I can look into that bubble and it indicates roughly what the condition of the battery is.
 

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focus123 said:
Bottom line is: Do proper maintenance and be aware of poor battery performance so you do not get stranded. Shocked
Every 6 months I add distilled water. Seems that it takes about a cup and a half each time. That would be 9 cups by the end of 3 years-enough to kill a battery?
Not if it's needed!!!! Also, why? If you live in a hot climate (like I do) and drive a lot, OK.
You may have a charging issue that might cause the water to boil off... (Check out every thing).

As for Maintenance Free....... :shock: Yes there are some newer batteries that are maintenance free BUT, if you have a load on them all the time (as newer cars do) they may need to be topped off with a trickle charge every now and then (if you have the car parked a lot). So there is SOME maintence.... :D

Yuma,
 

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Something else to consider is some of the OEM no maintenance batteries can leak. As a matter of fact both of our 2008 RAV's had batteries that leaked. It was a corrosive mess. Both were replaced under warranty with a new but regular "requires maintenance" batteries. With the old batts out the tray and surrounding areas were power washed to clean them up. The mechanic at the dealership discovered it on my car and handled it. When I got home I looked at her car and it was also leaking. I've never seen this before and I've owned 40-50 cars over the years. Point being, it's worth checking the battery visually every once in a while even if a no maintenance type......something I will do from now on.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
RTexasF said:
Something else to consider is some of the OEM no maintenance batteries can leak. As a matter of fact both of our 2008 RAV's had batteries that leaked. It was a corrosive mess. Both were replaced under warranty with a new but regular "requires maintenance" batteries.
Where were the batteries leaking from? Was there a crack in the case? I assume they were the OEM Furukawa batteries? I'll be keeping a close eye on mine.
 

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The brand I don't know but they were OEM, came in the cars from the factory. Apparently the cases were cracked somewhere as there was corrosion on the tray and below. These were the no maintenance batteries that had a strip of tape across the caps to the cells that said "No Maintenance battery". Remove the tape and the cell caps were right there & could be unscrewed with a large bit screwdriver.
Oddly both started the cars the instant you turned the key. The only clue that something was awry was visual.
 

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Well, I've changed the battery every fifteen months, the first time under warranty, but exactly fifteen months later the other battery died, and now a year after the last one, the car takes more time to start up, I have had four previous cars and never have to changed batteries so often, my wife had a Hyundai Santa Fe diesel, and has to replace the batteries the same like me, I dont know whats its happening with this cars
 

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Hey - my RAV4 just started the “slow cold starting” thing this week. It’s reaching 30k miles now since been picked up from dealer’s lot in March 2006.
Never paid attention to the little nice clean battery till now its morning wake up suddenly takes a few seconds longer; nothing else noticeable. Then I read your posts here and ended my superstition about the superpower of modern batteries… Time to say goodbye to the rock solid guy.

Thanks junebug for organizing these posts.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Well, now it seems to be happening to me. For the past 10 days or so, since it's been getting chilly, the RAV takes a little longer to crank first thing in the morning. Most people would never notice, but I can tell since I have to keep the starter engaged maybe a half second longer. My 2008 is 2 years old this week and I have a little more than 10,000 miles on it. I added distilled water to the battery a few months ago--maybe I should have just left it alone.
 

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Happened to me last summer, while exploring some forest backroads, 15km away from the main paved road, without any warning the battery was too weak to even open the electric door lock, i was lucky some folks had the same idea and offered me a lift to the park entrance where, i could get cellphone reception and call a CAA towing.
They boosted the car and i followed the towing to the nearest garage, there i could not restart the motor, had to boost it again just to drive in the garage door.
Turns out the almost 3years old battery was shorted, so i got it replaced and everything is in working order since then.
 

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Well, yesterday I inspected the battery and all cells were at the proper level. No corrosion on the terminals at all. I attached my battery charger and left it charging for about 3 hours until the draw was about 1 1/2 amps. This morning she fired right up instantly even though it was pretty chilly. I'm keeping my eye on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Follow-up: Ever since I charged the battery the RAV has started quickly every morning. Seems the battery just needed a little boost.
 

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junebug1701 said:
Well, yesterday I inspected the battery and all cells were at the proper level. No corrosion on the terminals at all. I attached my battery charger and left it charging for about 3 hours until the draw was about 1 1/2 amps. This morning she fired right up instantly even though it was pretty chilly. I'm keeping my eye on it.
good job~ what kind of battery charger?

maybe i should try doing that next time before pulled it out... anyway last battery had lived 4 years 28k miles long... not bad for being a RAV4 battery in Minnesota! :p
 

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Discussion Starter #19
xfn said:
junebug1701 said:
Well, yesterday I inspected the battery and all cells were at the proper level. No corrosion on the terminals at all. I attached my battery charger and left it charging for about 3 hours until the draw was about 1 1/2 amps. This morning she fired right up instantly even though it was pretty chilly. I'm keeping my eye on it.
good job~ what kind of battery charger?

maybe i should try doing that next time before pulled it out... anyway last battery had lived 4 years 28k miles long... not bad for being a RAV4 battery in Minnesota! :p
It's an old Schauer battery charger, nothing fancy:

 

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Went to our local Toyota dealer yesterday to get some anti-freeze and told the parts guy I couldn't find any warranty for the battery. He said the warranty was 3 years and was also told that most people get 5 years out of the original battery....sooo at 4 years 8 months need to start looking for a new battery probably at Walmart, their batteries are highly rated by Consumer reports. At least the battery lasted longer that the original tires that were shot at 23K :)
 
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