Batt drain help - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 11th, 14, 08:18 PM Thread Starter
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Ben
 
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Batt drain help

When I bought my car from previous owner not long ago, on test drive I drove the car around and we parked the car for a few minutes (not long). When we tried to crank and drive the car again it acted as though the battery was dead. So he went and bought a new one... Well I got the car home drove it around 2days and parked it. Well I had been going outside and cranking it just to keep batt up, and fluids circulated. Well other day it would not crank and batt was dead. So I jumped it off and ran for about 30 minutes. I tried the next day and batt was completely dead. So I fully charged it and well it's dead again. I'm figuring I have a drain on the batt. So I said all that to ask,where do I start? How do I test the source? Do I test from fuse box or... I had a previous thread on my wiring issues but I had to fix other problems first, so I think that this might go hand in hand. Thanks for the advice in advance.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 11th, 14, 08:57 PM
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Re: Batt drain help

Check the easy stuff first dash lights glove box light trunk light door jamb switches brake light switch etc. If you don't find it there put a 12 volt test light on the battery it will be lit because there is a draw. Start pulling fuses all of them but do it one at a time. When the light goes out you have isolated the circuit that the short is in start rewiring or repair the bad wire. If its in a tough to get at place solder the repair rather than Scotchlocks or butt connectors and make sure it is sealed well. Alex
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 14, 04:09 AM
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Re: Batt drain help

Quote:
Originally Posted by ss27 View Post
If you don't find it there put a 12 volt test light on the battery it will be lit because there is a draw.
Put the light between a battery cable and battery post.
Good advice given by Alex.
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 14, 04:41 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Batt drain help

Thanks Alex and Everett I'll try this. I'm going to check it lout this morning. I'm kinda curious though if the alternator isn't working properly either, because when it's running the lights are still a little dim. Any way I'll check for draw first.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 14, 04:55 AM
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Re: Batt drain help

I'd make sure the alternator is good too. I just had to replace my alternator. Got in to start it...nothing. Jumped the car and drove it a little....went to A Zone and they checked the battery....was at 9.6V! Took the battery in to them so they could charge it and test it and they said it was bad. I told them I wanted to see the test for myself and sure enough the battery tested good! Nice try guys! Then I replaced the voltage regulator...still no charge. Finally I replaced the alternator with the old one I took off when I put the chrome one on....good to go!! Bad alternator!
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 14, 05:45 AM
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Re: Batt drain help

Sixty68-Camaro,

I would suggest you start by having someone check to see if the charging system is works properly, next I would suggest that you pull the fuses for any non essential items, heater fan, interior lights, radio...

See if the problem stops. If it stop killing the battery, you can assume that one of these items is got an issue. Then you can install the fuses one at a time until the problem reoccurs and bingo you know where to start.

I am still betting that your charging system has a problem. Check your ground for the voltage regulator.

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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 14, 08:25 AM
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Re: Batt drain help

Check alternator belt tightness.
Then check voltage at alt BATT stud referenced to battery neg post and compare to vaoltage across bat posts.
If more than 0.4 VDC difference, disconect battery and follow red wire from pos battery clamp to battery junction block to horn relat buss bar to alt BATT stud and wire brush everything, reassemble, clean battery posts and clamps.

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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 14, 05:56 PM
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Re: Batt drain help

Starting and running the car for a short time is probably less good than letting it sit.
Starting draws hundreds of amps while the car charges at tens of amps.
Also, the engine needs to get warm and then run for a half hour or more to get moisture out of the oil.
Measure the battery voltage (at the battery) before starting, then w/ the engine running. A charged battery is 12.6V, and running you should see ~14.5V on the battery.
Try disconnecting the - terminal, charging overnight, and then starting. If it discharges overnight w/ the - cable connected, keep it disconnected til the trouble is fixed.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 14, 08:08 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Batt drain help

Ok I didn't get a chance to work on it yesterday (Christmas shopping) anyway I took the brand new batt back to the zone this morning and they told me it was bad. I didn't have the previous owners number he put in for that batteries warranty and I don't want to bother him. I took the batt to oriellys and they are checking it now. I don't believe it's bad. So my question is what brand batt works for y'all. If the batt is bad I thought about buying a yellow top optima batt is this a good decision?
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 14, 08:28 AM
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Re: Batt drain help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sixty8-camaro View Post
Ok I didn't get a chance to work on it yesterday (Christmas shopping) anyway I took the brand new batt back to the zone this morning and they told me it was bad. I didn't have the previous owners number he put in for that batteries warranty and I don't want to bother him. I took the batt to oriellys and they are checking it now. I don't believe it's bad. So my question is what brand batt works for y'all. If the batt is bad I thought about buying a yellow top optima batt is this a good decision?
AC Delco works for me...

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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 14, 09:58 AM
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Re: Batt drain help

Depends on where the battery is. If in the trunk Yellow or Red top Optima or other AGM battery is needed. Under the hood, either type is fine.

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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 14, 10:20 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Batt drain help

Well battery is good so I didn't have to buy a batt after all. I can't believe the zone told me it was bad. Well I tried checking for parasitic drain. It seems when I pulled the neg side of and put test light between it and the post the light blinked but didn't stay on. Does this mean it has a drain? The connections are good. So why doesn't the light continue to stay on if it's a drain?
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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 14, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Batt drain help

I'm going to check the alternator right now, to see if it's working right.
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 14, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Batt drain help

Well I tested the alternator at battery and it reads 12.56 when cranked but it never reached the 14. Then I tested at pos on alternator and it read the same. I also put a load on it and it jumped down to 12.3 so is it safe to assume the alternator is bad.
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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 14, 11:38 AM
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Re: Batt drain help

If when you said 12.56 volts when "cranked", and cranked means running, then something definitely sounds bad with the charging system. I'm pretty sure that if your reading relatively the same low voltage at the (+) post on the alternator and the battery, you can assume it's the alternator and not the voltage regulator. I use an internally regulated alternator so I can't give much help other then basically agreeing with your diagnosis by isolating the 2 devices as you indicated you did.
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