My Jeep Is Cold Weather Electrically Challanged! - Off-Road Forums & Discussion Groups
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post #1 of (permalink) Old 12-18-2002, 08:14 AM Thread Starter
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My Jeep Is Cold Weather Electrically Challanged!

The electrical gremlins are at it again! Our Temperatures have been way above normal so far this winter, So I have been driving the jeep a lot. In the mornings, when the temps are in the single digits or colder, the electrical system does wierd stuff. I start it up and let it warm up while I scrape the windows. Then I get in it and try to drive away and the headlights are dim and the heater motor is slower than normal. Driving for a few minutes, the lights brighten up and the motor will speed up, but only after driving it for at least 1/2 minute. The charging system is good, it has a brand new red top Optima, and every thing has been correctly grounded. Also, I have a Sun super tach II that completely quits until it warms up. I do have some wiring problems with brake and turn signals are concerned, i.e. wrong bulbs light up, but I don't believe the two conditions are related.

Any thoughts?
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 12-18-2002, 08:36 AM
 
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Re: My Jeep Is Cold Weather Electrically Challanged!

I have an occassional problem with the accessories not getting any power for a few seconds after the jeep starts in -20 or colder weather. Even the gauges, blower fan is dead for a moment. Obviously the ignition circuit is getting power. It's like a switch fails to close after the key it rotated back from cranking position. Must be related to the ignition switch assembly in my case. Sticky in extreme cold? I suppose somewhere a spring returns it to the run position. It does stop cranking, but it doesn't immediately go into the position that reactivates power to the dash. Only happens occassionaly, and in extreme cold, so I don't worry about it.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 12-19-2002, 01:13 PM Thread Starter
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Re: My Jeep Is Cold Weather Electrically Challanged!

Mine is not related to an ignition switch hangup, mine, the heater motor is running and the lights are on, but after driving for 1/2 a minute, today about 3 minutes, it is like someone turned on the motor to high speed and the headlights to bright. It is not a gradual gain of power but a sudden like a switch being flipped. This stuff can be the most frustrating to track down, because the problem never happens when you plan on working on it.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 12-19-2002, 02:25 PM
 
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Re: My Jeep Is Cold Weather Electrically Challanged!

Take a look at the plug that goes into the alternator, they sometimes corrode and alternator wiring in general and related connections. If all the wiring checks out, or you replace it and no improvement, the alternator is faulty.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 12-19-2002, 05:39 PM
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Re: My Jeep Is Cold Weather Electrically Challanged!

1. Have ya gone over all those grounds?
2. A bad ground could mimic the problem.
3. Correct the bulb and wiring issues.. and it's one headache gone!
4. The you'll know what it ain't.
5. Which is almost as important to knowing what it is.
6. Any glaze on the alternator belt?
7. What's the voltage at the battery when cold?
8. What's the voltage at the battery when warmed up?
9. Dished Pullies?
10. What's the idle at?
11. Perhaps a problem with the regulator when cold?
12. Bad battery cables/wiring, corroded inside the insulation where it can't be seen?
13. What's the starter pulling in amperage.
14. Too much amperage to the starter motor and the battery will have to take longer to charge back up.
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