I started having problems with my 2000 lexus es 300 a few weeks ago. My battery kept dying. I would jump it off and it would take me to my destination and then would have to be jumped off again. I got a new battery sunday, it ran fine all week long. On Thursday however I had to jump it off again. Drove straight home. Then tried to restart. My father in law replaced battery cables and it melted them (3 x's). Now you jump the battery and remove the jumpers, as soon as they come off, the car goes dead (windows would not roll down or anything). Now I finally get it to continue to start once the battery was charged but even thought the fuses are all working, I have no dash lights, windows and locks dont work, no tail or brake lights ( and even though the interior light wasn't working last night, when I got in to move the car now that it will crank, the interior light is working again but still none of the others). Was going to move it into the drive way but after I started the car. The gear shift will not even move out of park. I tried turning the wheel, etc. It will not move out of park. Any ideas?
At some point you have to figure out the battery isn't being recharged after you start the engine. With an electric fuel pump and electronic fuel injection, the engine will run on a fully charged battery for about an hour. It's not the fault of the battery. You have a charging system problem. To prove it, once the engine is running again after a jump-start and the jumper cables removed, use an inexpensive digital voltmeter to measure the battery voltage. It must be between 13.75 and 14.75 volts. If it is low, the battery will not recharge after starting the engine. Most of the time the generator is the problem although it should be tested before you buy a new one.
Also be aware that when the battery is completely discharged, it will take a good 15 to 20 minutes before it starts to take a charge. That means while the engine might start right up with a jump-start, it probably won't charge the battery enough to keep the engine running in that minute or two the jumper cables were connected. The battery should be charged at a slow rate for one to two hours.