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post #1 of (permalink) Old 02-24-2002, 09:33 PM Thread Starter
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how to find what is draining battery?

I have had an optima red top battery for about a year with no problems at all. This week I parked my jeep at the airport for a few days, and the battery was dead when I came back. I got it jumped and it ran fine on the way home. When I hooked up my battery charger to the battery, it showed it as 0% charged.

I'm guessing there is something that is draining the battery while it sits, but I haven't known about it since I drive the jeep everyday and it is getting charged while driving. I had recently re-loomed some wires, so maybe something that was unshielded is now making contact with an accessory or a ground.

Are there some things I can check with my volt meter to locate where the power is going??

I'm really at a loss of where to start. I will check the places where I re-loomed the wire first, but I want to make sure I find the problem.

I appreciate any help.

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post #2 of (permalink) Old 02-24-2002, 10:22 PM
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Re: how to find what is draining battery?

I removed one battery terminal then brushed it to the post.
If you see or hear a spark,it's too much. Then I removed one fuse at a time until I found when a certain fuse was out, there was no spark. It made the short easier to find.

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post #3 of (permalink) Old 02-24-2002, 10:59 PM
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Re: how to find what is draining battery?

One problem with trying to check for a current draw by "brushing the battery post" is there are many things on a vehicle that draws power at all times-Stereo's, clocks, and computers all keep a small amount of power flow. These will show a spark, which is dangerous around a battery due to explosive gasses that all batteries release. This can also cause computer problems by causing a power spike. The proper(and safer) way is with a DVOM and checking amperage draw on each circuit.

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post #4 of (permalink) Old 02-25-2002, 08:29 AM
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Re: how to find what is draining battery?

I believe the old way was, disconnect POS post terminal and place a test light between battery post and cable connector. Then, check and locate your battery drain from there. I believe the test light should stay off for no drain. If test light is on then there is your drain. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, it has been awhile. [img]/wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

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post #5 of (permalink) Old 02-25-2002, 08:54 AM
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Re: how to find what is draining battery?

That's a good way to check it. You can pull the fuses also and replace them one at a time to see what is draining the system. Even a bad diode in the alternator will drain the bat.

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post #6 of (permalink) Old 02-25-2002, 12:50 PM
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Re: how to find what is draining battery?

I have the Optima and accidentially allowed it to discharge to near 0. I then tried to charge it, but with little success. Ater reading an earlier discussion on the board, I used a low trickle charge and it came back to full charge. That is not to say that a drain on the battery is not a constant problem, but one it is drained, recharging it can be a challenge.

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