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**DONOTDELETE** 10-01-1999 11:27 PM

Electrical Problem
 
I can not remember if I posted this just before the old board went to "online heaven", so here goes. I put dual Optima Batteries in my Ramcharger. I got a drain on the batteries and couldn't start the RC. I took it to the electrical shop to look for the drain. They told me the ammeter was the weak link in those old Dodges. They wanted to disconnect it, so, because I'm going to re-do my dash anyway and replace gauges, I said go ahead and disconnect it and put a Voltmeter on the left wing of the gauge panel. They did. Took it home and it drained both batteries. We fixed all that (you can tell I'm trying to make this brief, can't you). They blamed it on the radio. To shorten the story more, I said let's put in a new ammeter, I can't have the old one just hanging inside the dash, with a hole in the dash. They said "You can do that, but you'll have the weak link back". I said "It looks like I already have a weak link. The ammeter never caused any trouble during the first 20 years the RC was on the road." I left it at that, and went home with a hole in the dash where the ammeter should be. Have any of you heard of that "weak link", or disconnected the ammeter and replaced it with a voltmeter? I have no idea what I would put in that hole, but I saw Andy's panel, and think I now know what I want to do. Any thoughts on all this "weak link" stuff. Should I run both a voltmeter and ammeter? Thanks. Ross


**DONOTDELETE** 10-02-1999 12:11 AM

Re: Electrical Problem
 
Ross I have never heard of such a thing, sounds like they are guessing from one thing to the next. Here is what I would do:

Hook up a digital amp meter at the positive on the battery with everything off you should see some amperage their if their is a drain. Now get rid of the dual battery and see if that makes any difference (by the way if you put a isolator on their it would only drain one battery) if that doesn't help start removing fuses from the panel one by one. If you get a big drop in the amperage drain at the battery you now know what circut it is in and narrow down things to look for. If you pull all the fuses and still no change you know it is before the fuse box or an unfused circut (like the ignition). A warn starter can also drain power sometimes. Remember to make sure everything is turned off when you do these tests. Hold the button in on the door so the dome light doesn't come on. Check things like the glove box light make sure it does off and any consule lights (if you have any of them).

Hope this helps, it will give you a starting point.



Mopar_Mudder
http://discover-net.net/~greener/truck.htm

**DONOTDELETE** 10-02-1999 12:43 AM

Re: Electrical Problem
 
Thanks Mudder. I think you're right, they are only guessing because they can't find anything wrong. Do you run both an ammeter and a voltmeter, or what?


**DONOTDELETE** 10-02-1999 10:00 AM

Re: Electrical Problem
 
Mudders idea is right on. Another trick to make it easier on you if you dont have another person to watch the meter is to grab one of the "buzzers" that you pulled out of a vehicle (the buzzer for key in ignition, lights on, etc) and put some pigtails on it. Hook up the same way you would the digital VOM and listen for the buzz. Once you find the problem the buzz will stop. You gotta love electrical problems!


**DONOTDELETE** 10-02-1999 11:52 AM

Re: Electrical Problem
 
Have an inoperative ampmeter in an '84 RC. Have been looking for the meter shunt which is supposed to be
located under the hood. Does anyone know where its located?


**DONOTDELETE** 10-02-1999 12:32 PM

Re: Electrical Problem
 
Hey, Wyz, slick trick. I'll do it. Thanks


**DONOTDELETE** 10-03-1999 12:59 PM

Re: Electrical Problem
 
The best way I found to check for draws.... Remove the negative battery cable, take 12V test light and hook one end to neg post and other to neg terminal. If a draw is present light will illuminate. if not..it won't. remove one fuse at a time to determine which one turns light off. if ligt stays on, remove pos cable from the alternator...then starter. try it .. it works.


**DONOTDELETE** 10-03-1999 05:00 PM

Re: Electrical Problem
 
Thanks, I will try it



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