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  #1  
Old 02-08-2008, 09:12 AM
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
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Posts: 211
Default Battery Drain

Alright, so electrical **** is not my cup of tea!!! --- After replacing the motor in my 89 DX, I noticed a power surging problem. All the lights in my car would surge. Eventually the damn thing would steadily lose charge and the lights would dim down so far that I was literally driving in the dark. Then, the car would just sputter under heavy load from lack of power and die on the side of the road.

I replaced the alternator and battery with brand new ones and the car drove fine for maybe 50 miles, now it's draining again and showing the same symptoms as before...

Anyone know where to start?

NOTE:

Did not have any power issues before motor transplant. PLEASE HELP. I'm so sick of sinking money into this car. The whole ****ing top end is like brand new now. Hope someone can help, Thanks in advance!

Battery light was never on during it's surging phase.

Battery light came on after heavy gasing in 2nd gear, with the new alternator installed. This prompted me to buy a new battery. Now the light is on and stays on.
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  #2  
Old 02-08-2008, 09:14 AM
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
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Default RE: Battery Drain

Also, car does NOT drain over night when the car is sitting. It's only when the car is operational and it steadily loses charge as I drive it. When my lights dim to almost nothing, I know it's time to pull over and get a charge from some jumper cables.

Remember: Alternator and Battery are both BRAND NEW.
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  #3  
Old 02-08-2008, 09:20 AM
RonJ's Avatar
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1997 Honda Civic
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 9,450
Default RE: Battery Drain

Begin by focusing on wires and connectors going to and from the alternator. Look for damaged wires and corroded connectors. Also inspect the battery connectors and wires, as well as the battery ground wire connection to the body frame. Replace and clean anything that is damaged or corroded.
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  #4  
Old 02-08-2008, 09:22 AM
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
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Posts: 211
Default RE: Battery Drain

Thanks Ron, I'm going to dig in this son of a bitch today I guess. I'm just so frustrated at this point, I've dumped over 2 grand in this car since I bought it for 300 bucks witha blown head gasket. UGHHH
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  #5  
Old 02-08-2008, 09:37 AM
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
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Posts: 211
Default RE: Battery Drain

Ron, do you know if I could use a volt meter or something to help me diagnose this problem? If so, what's the procedure? I've got a multimeter, but I wouldn't know where to start and what to look for... I think it would be better than trying to reach up under the intake and trace it all the way from the alternator (driverside) to the battery (pass side) with my bare finger tips. All the wires are insulated and I'd have to cut that off to actually find the problem.
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  #6  
Old 02-08-2008, 10:17 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
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Default RE: Battery Drain

Sounds like trouble with the alternator. I know it's new and all that, but that doesn't always mean it's good. You could take the alternator out and have it bench tested.

Check in the underhood fuse box that the screws for the two big wires and all the big fuses are tight.

As for what you can test with a voltmeter, plenty. With the engine running you should have about 14 volts across the battery and also from the big wire on the alternator to ground. If you have a very high voltage at the alternator but low at the battery, there is a problem with the big wire from the alternator to battery, or in the underhood fuse box which links them together.

Also check that you have battery voltage on the little wire that goes to the "IG" terminal on the alternator when the key is on. If not could be one of the fuses uder the dash.
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  #7  
Old 02-08-2008, 01:26 PM
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
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Posts: 211
Default RE: Battery Drain

I'm getting 11.5 at the alternator and 11.5 at the battery at all times. Even at start up. The car simply won't start now, it acts like the battery is dead. I'm going to jump it again and see what the battery looks like after a few min of charging, updates soon.


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  #8  
Old 02-08-2008, 01:42 PM
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
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Default RE: Battery Drain

Charged battery to 12.6, car had slow start but fired, then dropped to 12.1. I checked it again about 10 minutes later of idling and it dropped to 11.3. Haynes manual says to remove the green connector from the alternator and if the battery light goes off, then the alternator is bad. I did just that and the battery light went off. I'm thinking that something happened to the alternator when I accelerated hard to get around this jerk swerving in my lane because that's when the battery light initially came on.

I'm going to pull this alternator and take it up for a bench and possibley replace it tomorrow and hopefully this solves my problem. I'm so freakin pissed. I have to move out of my house by this weekend and then I have to put up with this B.S. UGHHH
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  #9  
Old 02-08-2008, 04:14 PM
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1997 Chevrolet C/K 1500
My Garage
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Brownsburg, IN 46112
Posts: 11,206
Default RE: Battery Drain

sounds to me like the wires that activate the alternator is the problem......
tho i have no idea what wires are what... sorry...
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till the next project civic i get- thank you and goodbye. i will return.

^supersize, thanks
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  #10  
Old 02-08-2008, 04:34 PM
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1997 Honda Civic
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 9,450
Default RE: Battery Drain

I think mk378 got it right when he said the "new" alternator might be bad.
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Old 02-08-2008, 04:34 PM
 
 
 
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