Testing electronics before install? - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old Mar 22nd, 09, 02:41 PM Thread Starter
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Testing electronics before install?

Alright, getting ready to put the car back together this spring. I would like to know if my electronics are functional before I reinstall them, ie windshield wiper and fluid pump, heater blower.
The car is gutted. No wiring or components in. I have no idea if they worked before I took them out. The car had been in storage for yrs.

1) does anything need the engine to be running to function for a short time?
2) Or does the ignition just need to be turned to Accessories for the windshield wiper/pump and heater blower to function? Brake light swich? Headlight Switch ect.

If yes to number 2 then I have the following questions:

Can I hook up my new harnesses (AAW update kit) or even my old harnesses to the ignition and battery, turn the ignition and test components out of the car? Plug in the wiper switch, the motor and turn it on? Test whatever I can think of before reinstalling and find out it is not working.

How would you ground it? Negative terminal of the battery to a metal bar that you could attach ground wire/s to it?

Any suggestions or thoughts?

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old Mar 22nd, 09, 03:35 PM
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Re: Testing electronics before install?

You could bench check things with a charged automotive battery using some heavy duty jumper wires with alligator clips or with terminals on the ends to mate to what you are testing. Just be careful around any battery when making connections or breaking them as the spark which could ignite things.
If doing stand alone tests with just a battery I would also wire up the jumper wire for the positive lead off of the battery with an inline fuse to where if there is a problem it would blow. Some things will require a small amount of current/amperage while others will take more so you might have to change the value of the fuse now and then.
I've tested things like blower motors before but I would clamp it down because when the start up they have a fair amount of torque and might slip out of your hands.
If you want to check things using the harness in the car, make sure any unconnected wires are not hitting any metal creating a short. If a part gets it's ground through it's mounting, then make up a heavy duty jumper to make this ground connection to the battery negative post or to a clean bare metal spot on the car. You might have to wiggle it around to dig through any paint on the surfaces.


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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old Mar 22nd, 09, 05:47 PM
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Re: Testing electronics before install?

I bench tested my fan motor, radio, wiper motor, washer pump and some other things. I put together some 6ft wires with alligator clips on the ends to assist in the testing from the car battery.

For testing the wiper motor, search for a thread that I started on the subject and there is a good schematic of for to set it up. I also did this this to test switches before installing them too...

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 09, 09:03 AM
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Re: Testing electronics before install?

Also, get a Chilton's from O'Reilly or somewhere for $25. It'll have the electrical schematic for the car and have the color coding so you know where to apply voltage and ground if you're individually testing.
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