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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Battery went flat, car won't start, dash doesn't display anything

Hey guys,

So I have a 1996 RR P38 4.6 HSE

The problem is my battery went flat, and now even with jumper cables attached, the dash doesn't light up at all and I can't start the car.

The lead up to this was as follows:
• Unlocked car to start it, dash all lit up, usual beeps etc, but too flat to crank
• Got some jumper cables, but in the mean time the battery completely died
• When I connected the jumpers, the dash displayed an "engine locked" message
• Tried to use the unlock code (using the key in the drivers door, lefts and rights etc) to no avail
• Now dash won't light up even with jumpers, car won't crank

Does anybody know what's wrong, and what steps I can take to start the car again?

Thankfully I can lock/unlock the car with the key, and the manual with codes in is in the house.
 

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LEGACY VENDOR
1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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2,064 Posts
Re: Battery went flat, car won't start, dash doesn't display anything

Most likly the battery shorted out. Start by replacing the battery then address the lock out.
Follow the stickey above. Check all the cables for corrosion as well.
 

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1,351 Posts
Re: Battery went flat, car won't start, dash doesn't display anything

P38's like lots of juice. I would start with the battery and have it tested unless it old then replace it. Be sure to get a heavy enough battery, one recommended for P38's. Quite a few times, people cheap out, get something smaller, and suffer a short battery life. A completely dead Rover won't jump from an idling small car either.
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Re: Battery went flat, car won't start, dash doesn't display anything

Thanks guys, managed to sort it in the end.

I think the battery had shorted. I bought an Accumate battery conditioner and tried to charge the battery with that. It didn't register a battery was connected to it at first (under 1V most likely) but I gave it a jump with the charger connected and it started to charge. After 3 days it was fully charged and the battery read 13.0V so I don't think any damage was done to the battery so I'm keeping it for now.

The lockout was easy to resolve once there was enough power.
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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1,425 Posts
Re: Battery went flat, car won't start, dash doesn't display anything

Aloha,
Did you ever find out WHY the first battery went dead in the first place?
A full battery, at rest should not be reading quite that high.
What is the voltage when the ignition is switched on and you have not yet started it?
Automotive starting batteries are not designed for deep discharge, yours will absolutely have been irreparably harmed by even this single event.
Bring the battery to someone with a proper resistive pile type load tester and have them check how much of it's original capacity is left.
If it is down by 25% or more, or if it is more than 5 years old, I would seriously contemplate replacement.
P-38's are seriously power hungry and work a battery hard!
Cheers!
 
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