Battery Drain problem....Help! - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old Feb 26th, 06, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
 
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Battery Drain problem....Help!

Ok guys,

I spent most of yesterday afternoon trying to chase down a battery drain problem on my 69. Here's what I've tested and know so far:

- Altenator was tested at Autozone and passed all tests.
- Replaced original voltage regulator with Wells VR715 electronic unit.
- The current drain stops if I pull the "Ctsy-Ltr-Clk" fuse. So the problem is
on that circuit.

I got a PDF file copy of the 69 Camaro "CTSY-Ltr-Clk" circuit schematic and am trying to eleminate each component one at a time.

So far I've done the following:

- I've tested the dome light: Tested OK w/doors closed.
- tested the dome light by opening and closing the driver & passenger doors.
dome light works properly.
- Tested the dome light by closing the doors and turning the dome light on
by using the headlight switch. It works properly.
- I checked the "key reminder" circuit. It buzzed when I opened the door
with key in the ignition.
- I checked the horn, it works properly.
- I disconnected the wires to the horn, It still draws current.
- I disconnected the Hot wire to the horn relay, current draw stopped.
- I disconnected the power to the cigarette lighter, still drawing current.

I don't see any glove compartment lights or under dash lights.


I'M STUMPED! Could it be a bad horn relay even though the horn works? Anyone have any other ideas or things I could check?

Any help appreciated!!

Thanks,
-Mark
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old Feb 26th, 06, 12:06 PM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

If there is no glove box light, there still could be a wire for it under the dash near the lighter. Check for a loose wire up there thats grounding, otherwise you sure have looked everywhere. Since the horn relay is pretty cheap, why not replace it as long as you have the Wells new regulator too. Ive not looked inside the relay but maybe something is grounding inside it.

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old Feb 26th, 06, 12:11 PM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

console light in the back by the ashtray?
trunk light?
underhood light?
clock?? this will be a constant drain but shouldn't drain much very fast.

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old Feb 26th, 06, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

Thanks guys,

My car is a 69 plain jane coup so it doesn't have a clock or underhood light. Since there's no clock or underhood light, chances are good there's no trunk light either. I've managed to loose the trunk key so I can't get into the trunk until I get a key made...

I'll check for a light on the back of the console by the rear ashtray and for loose wires under the dash. Will probably pick up a horn relay too.

-Mark
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old Feb 26th, 06, 01:09 PM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

to open the trunk, remove the upright part of the back seat, reach thru the brace opening with a long pipe or stick taped to a crescent wrench thats open just a tad bit, about a popsicle stick width, reach to the tab that sticks out of the back of the lock and turn it and presto it opens

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old Feb 26th, 06, 08:05 PM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

One trick I used was to put an ammeter in line with the battery and witnessed about 1 amp of current at rest. I could shake the car and would se chnanges from 1 amp down to about 1oo mA. The 100 mA's was due to the clock but the 1 Amp turned out to be a light in the trunk that had a faulty switch.


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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old Feb 27th, 06, 12:11 AM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

Mark, Do you have an aftermarket radio or amplifier that is "Hot" all the time? Maybe someone wired it into the ctsy/ltr/clock circuit (which is not switched.) Most radios or amps can draw enough at idle to drain a battery in a day or so........ Jb

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old Mar 19th, 06, 10:50 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

***Update***

I spent most of yesterday trying to troubleshoot the Ctsy/Ltr/Clock circuit.

First, I replaced the horn relay. - No Change.
I pulled & cleaned the drivers side door switch - no change.
- Replaced the burned out dome light and rear ashtray light - They work now, but no change on battery drain.
- disconnected the tag light from ground - no change.
- I disconnected all wires (even the antenna) from the old AM radio- no change.
- All the wiring I looked at under the dash "looked" OK.

I'm still stumped!!!

The only thing I haven't checked for yet is to see if there is a trunk light. (I've lost the key to the trunk!! ) BTW, does anyone know if a base model 69 coup came standard with a trunk light???

I know I can get a battery quick disconnect switch and get around this problem but, I want to fix the problem if possible.

If anyone has any other ideas, I'm all ears!!!

-Mark

Last edited by Granny's 69; Mar 19th, 06 at 11:04 AM.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old Mar 19th, 06, 11:53 AM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

Mark, I know one problem on the 3rd gen Camaros is that the hood light will not go off when the hood is down. It's rare to see a 3rd gen Camaro with a bulb in the light socket, since people disconnect them all the time because they do not work in the first place. The point being that if you have an under hood light, it might be staying on.

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old Mar 19th, 06, 12:37 PM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

time to get out the cheap handy 12v light tester with a point on the nose of it, ($5.99) put it in between the Neg post and the Neg cable, (pull the cable off the post first). If the light is on, then you have a direct power drain, now start pulling fuses till you see the light go 'off' then you know which circuit it is.

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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old Mar 19th, 06, 02:17 PM
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Jim
 
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Granny's 69
- The current drain stops if I pull the "Ctsy-Ltr-Clk" fuse. So the problem is
on that circuit.

I got a PDF file copy of the 69 Camaro "CTSY-Ltr-Clk" circuit schematic and am trying to eleminate each component one at a time.

Any help appreciated!!

Thanks,
-Mark
Mark,

Do you have the PDF file others like myself could look at or is it online somewhere and do you have a link ?.

I would think too your car is similiar to my 73 and 74 Nova's in the fact that there is an orange wire going down the driver's door sill to above the driver's rear inner wheel housing and from there there is a connector that extends this orange wire along with a white wire up to the dome light. Back at this connector if there was an optional, standard equipment or a trunk light someone else wired it might be at the driver's side inner wheel housing area and connected there. If you want to you could pull the rear seat to see if any non factory wires are run to the trunk for a trunk light or you might be able to see this factory connector and be able to reach back there and unplug it or see if there is another connector plugged into it with a wire running back and up towards the trunk hinge which then goes to the trunk light. Another option would be to cut the orange wire which should be the power for the dome light and make a cut back by the rear seat or in the door sill and then you could splice it back together if needed to try an eliminate some things.

If you have the file so we can see it, let us know.

Jim

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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old Mar 19th, 06, 02:45 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

Thanks all,

Camaro Dave - There isn't an underhood light on my car.

Click - Already done the hook up tester, pull fuses routine. It's definately in the Courtesy-clock-lighter circuit.

SOA-Nova - here is the link to the diagram I'm using....Thanks 69-ER!!! http://www.myimagehosting.com/pic.ph...8aaKnA&i=19413

Sorry if this seems like a silly question but, is the "key reminder" switch separate from the ignition switch?

-Mark
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old Mar 19th, 06, 03:47 PM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

It's possible that the driver's switch is the problem and to check that, remove it from the door jamb, unplug the two wires going to it, do not allow them to touch the body of the car and then see if you have any current draws. The driver's switch is actually two switches in one. If there is still a current draw using the diagram you have there are connectors off of that circuit to help track down the problem (it's just how hard are they to access and unplug).

Where it’s at I don’t know but I’m going to think close to the fuse block but try unplugging connector C200 and if the power drain goes away then there is something past this junction drawing power (of which the diagram shows a trunk light circuit but you also have underdash lights and the roof light in this leg of the circuit).

If C200 is unplugged but there is still a current drain then either the console light portion is drawing power or it is the glove box light or the cigarette lighter portion.

If the problem lies past connector C200 then it branches to connector C231 and C250. Unplug those to see which way the problem is.

I know you have said "All the wiring I looked at under the dash "looked" OK." but I have done a lot of wiring installations in cars and can make a harness look untouched when looked at by others and I have to wonder if someone has not made a splice into the harness at some point and it's not easily detectable (like maybe someone wired up a vanity light on one of the visors or added a Lojack module or a pager alarm, who knows as to how invisible they might have done the installation).

Jim

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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old Mar 19th, 06, 05:33 PM
 
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

Two points of interest you may want to check. The most obvious one, does your stop lights stay on? I used to have an International truck and always backed it in to the parking spot where it had to go after work and every morning the battery was dead. After a little trouble shooting, I found the mechanical brake light switch didn't line up with the brake pedal too well. I don't know if you have a hydraulic switch or mechanical, but it wouldn't hurt to check it out. The second obvious thing to do is to check the battery. The one you have may have a short in one off the cells. To check if it does, take the cell caps off of the battery, check the acid level. Maintanence free batteries can still loose acid levels if overcharged. If all cells are up to level, put a probe such as a nail on each end of the alligator test leads as to not contaminate the clips with battery acid, and with a volt meter, probe each cell individually side by side. Each cell to cell reading should read 2 volts. If it does remove the leads and check the next two cells side by side including one of the cells you just did for a two volt reading. If you come across one with much less that two volts, one of the cells are dead. Shorts in battery cells usually occur from overcharging a battery with a low acid. Also check the specific gravity with a hydrometer for each cell. Any automotive store sell them with easy to understand instructions on how to use it.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old Mar 21st, 06, 08:19 AM
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Re: Battery Drain problem....Help!

It been a while since i've been on this site..

There is a metal strap around the battery cable that holds it to the solenoid, if i remember right. See if it has worn through the cable.

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