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Old 08-17-2010, 11:00 PM   #1
KillerX
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Default Something is killing my battery, where do I start to look?

Well Iv gone through a ton of batteries (good thing I have warranty) something is killing my battery when the car is off, but I have no clue where to look. The power wire seems to be replaced with a 2 gauge power wire that runs to the front. where should that power wire end up?

Also I noticed its still not charging the battery when its on and it seems like the alt is working.

Im so confused and want to give up, this is the third time this summer Iv had to call friends to push it up my driveway and iv only driven it 3 times this summer

Any ideas would help

Brad
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:35 PM   #2
SmokedTires
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Yank the alt and hav it checked out, mine went bad and drained my battery
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Old 08-18-2010, 01:25 AM   #3
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If you think your battery is draining while the car is parked then you should check out each circuit one by one. Start by disconnecting the negative battery cable and installing a small test light between the cable and negative battery post. Make sure your doors are closed or both switches are manually depressed. If the test light illuminates brightly then you have a parasitic draw somewhere. First two places to check are your alternator and the radio.

Disconnect the charge wire from the alternator and watch to see if the test light goes out (be careful because the charge wire has juice so don't accidentally ground your wrench or let the wire touch any metal while you are doing this!). If that checks out ok, then pull the fuse for your radio circuit. If you have an aftermarket radio then it most likely has an inline fuse so that would be the easiest way to test. If the light is still lighting brightly, then remove, check light and re-install each fuse one by one until the light turns off or dims. When that happens, you have found a circuit with an issue. Depending on your year, some items constantly draw power but it should be very low amps.

If you don't have a test light, you can use a multimeter. Select Amps and connect the meter between the negative cable and battery post.

If none of this works, then you are looking at a possible starter/solenoid, ignition switch or maybe the headlight circuit.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

Last edited by Bronze76; 08-18-2010 at 01:29 AM.
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Old 08-18-2010, 07:43 AM   #4
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A bad starter will draw...........................
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Old 08-18-2010, 02:39 PM   #5
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Need to get your hands on a volt meter, ck voltage on alternater, should be around 14.5 V DC while running then check the battery voltage, it should be within a few 10ths of the alternater reading. After market radios, boosters,alarm systems ect are the first place to look. I found on my 68 that if the wiper sytem is not in the fully closed postion, it would drain mine. till then disconnect that battery when you stop. Luck to you.
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Old 08-18-2010, 02:40 PM   #6
alaskacorvette
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Default Battery drain

If you are working by yourself buy a cheap seat belt buzzer. Use that instead of the test lamp. When you pull a fuse and the buzzing goes away you have found the circuit with a problem. Good luck!

Jim
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Old 08-18-2010, 02:55 PM   #7
Frank43
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I had the same problem, and the culprit was the passive alarm. It didnt work anyway, but was a slow drain. I disconnected it and that was it.
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Old 08-18-2010, 02:57 PM   #8
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Check the interior lights delay dimmer module behind the glove box. Disconnect it and see if your problem goes away. Common culprit for this mystery battery draw.
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 08-18-2010, 08:28 PM   #9
alaskacorvette
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Default What year?

What year is your car? What options?

Jim
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Old 08-19-2010, 07:58 AM   #10
99 Black Bird TA
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What year is the car?

My car first issue with this was the ac/heater fan was running slowing when the car was off because of a bad relay. Unplugged the relay and the problem went away.


Then a year later the problem started again. The starter, alternator, and points dist were all swapped out with the motor swap. No more problem.

Sometimes cars with points can have issues if the points aren't set right or wear out. Bad starter, alternator, interior light on etc can call cause it too.
__________________
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Old 08-19-2010, 08:05 AM   #11
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I too had a battery drain and was tired to having to charge the battery everytime I wanted to take a drive. A short term solution until you find the culprit is to install a battery cut-off switch of some type. At least it will keep the battery from draining. I ordered the type that installs directly to the battery. It has a **** that screws into the positive side. When you unscrew it you disconnect everything... no drain. Also kind of acts as an antitheft device. Most folks will simply think the battery is dead.
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Old 08-19-2010, 08:18 AM   #12
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had the same problem with my 78, fought the problem for 18 months off and on till one night after i was parked it in the garage i was messing around before turning off the garage lights and waiting for the delay in the interior lights to go out. when i turned the garage lights out i noticed a dim lightglow still on inside the car DUH it was the glove box light still on. seems the glove box light switch holder had cracked and was not cutting the glovebox light off. this was an intermittent problem as the light would shut off at times. GOOD LUCK
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Old 08-19-2010, 11:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annicorvette View Post
had the same problem with my 78, fought the problem for 18 months off and on till one night after i was parked it in the garage i was messing around before turning off the garage lights and waiting for the delay in the interior lights to go out. when i turned the garage lights out i noticed a dim lightglow still on inside the car DUH it was the glove box light still on. seems the glove box light switch holder had cracked and was not cutting the glovebox light off. this was an intermittent problem as the light would shut off at times. GOOD LUCK
Had the same thing happen to me, I noticed the rear center compartment light on. I now make sure that it is fully closed.
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Old 08-20-2010, 12:39 AM   #14
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Wooow thank you soo much guys for the quick input!!! Its taken me a while to read and im still reading! My year is 1980 options are AC, power windows aftermarket cassette radio,and ya thats about it.

Im sure ill have questions after I read all the posts so ill be back

thanks again guys, this was really stressing me out
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Old 08-21-2010, 11:37 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frankenvette View Post
I too had a battery drain and was tired to having to charge the battery everytime I wanted to take a drive. A short term solution until you find the culprit is to install a battery cut-off switch of some type. At least it will keep the battery from draining. I ordered the type that installs directly to the battery. It has a **** that screws into the positive side. When you unscrew it you disconnect everything... no drain. Also kind of acts as an antitheft device. Most folks will simply think the battery is dead.
Here is a link to one:
http://www.ecklers.com/battery-quick...side-post.html

I have the same problem so this is what I'll be ordering
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Old 08-22-2010, 06:27 PM   #16
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all good advise here... I'm having the same issue in my 75 ... thanks!
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Old 08-22-2010, 08:51 PM   #17
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I've had a problem chasing down a battery draw on my '81. I thought the alternator was not charging properly, so I took it to the local pro. He said it wasn't bad - but not perfect, either . After a few more mornings of dead battery I installed a lever-type cut off switch./ Love it - no more problems!!!! The downside is the new stereo loses the presets and the clock is always wrong - so what!!!

...Alan K.
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Old 08-22-2010, 09:49 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeroL81 View Post
I've had a problem chasing down a battery draw on my '81. I thought the alternator was not charging properly, so I took it to the local pro. He said it wasn't bad - but not perfect, either . After a few more mornings of dead battery I installed a lever-type cut off switch./ Love it - no more problems!!!! The downside is the new stereo loses the presets and the clock is always wrong - so what!!!

...Alan K.
That's a temporary fix. I wouldn't be happy with that, I want everything working correctly.
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Old 08-22-2010, 10:34 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bronze76 View Post
If you think your battery is draining while the car is parked then you should check out each circuit one by one. Start by disconnecting the negative battery cable and installing a small test light between the cable and negative battery post. Make sure your doors are closed or both switches are manually depressed. If the test light illuminates brightly then you have a parasitic draw somewhere. First two places to check are your alternator and the radio.

Disconnect the charge wire from the alternator and watch to see if the test light goes out (be careful because the charge wire has juice so don't accidentally ground your wrench or let the wire touch any metal while you are doing this!). If that checks out ok, then pull the fuse for your radio circuit. If you have an aftermarket radio then it most likely has an inline fuse so that would be the easiest way to test. If the light is still lighting brightly, then remove, check light and re-install each fuse one by one until the light turns off or dims. When that happens, you have found a circuit with an issue. Depending on your year, some items constantly draw power but it should be very low amps.

If you don't have a test light, you can use a multimeter. Select Amps and connect the meter between the negative cable and battery post.

If none of this works, then you are looking at a possible starter/solenoid, ignition switch or maybe the headlight circuit.

Hope this helps. Good luck.


I found mine from above post. Power antenna, interior dimmer delay module, and bad battery cables (not visible but corroded inside the sheath). It now charges and runs very well.
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Old 08-22-2010, 11:02 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CobaltOwner View Post
Here is a link to one:
http://www.ecklers.com/battery-quick...side-post.html

I have the same problem so this is what I'll be ordering
I had the same problem off and on the first 2 years I owned my car.
I installed a quick disconnect and used it religiously for 2 years. NOW I NEVER USE IT WTH ! Its still there if the problem ever happens again. I still use it when I go to Moose Jaw (45 min drive on hwy) once a year for ice cream with the wife Godda be safe dammit !
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Old 08-22-2010, 11:02 PM
 
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