1990 Escort GT, Battery Dies

Hello All,
Just wondering where to start chasing down the reason why if my car sits for a few days the battery dies. This seems to have happened about three times with two different batteries on particularly damp
mornings.
On all occasions the car sat for at least two days without being started, and was discovered on very damp mornings (not wet and rainy, just pervasive dampness). Something is probably draining the battery, since I have not had any trouble lately with the charging circuit. I think the dampness might have something to do with it.
Would a bad ground, combined with the dampness possibly shorting something, cause this? I can check the charging curcuit but don't know where to go from there, especially since I don't know what the possible causes are.
Thanks, Matt
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You need to put an ammeter is series with the battery with the key off.The clock and computer and radio will draw some current, but I think it should be less than 50ma (somebody correct me if I am wrong). If it's more than this start pulling fuses until the current drops and that may help isolate it (if it a fused circuit). I've seen people with faulty trunk and or hood light switches have this problem; light is on even though the trunk is closed.

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Hello jk,
I think I get the idea, I have a dvm I can use to check the amperage.
Thanks, Matt
jk wrote:

off.The
should
than
isolate
hood
is
rainy,
battery,
I
know
possible
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I checked the amperage between the neg battery post and the neg terminal on the 10 amp setting, resulted in 1.06 amps with the hood up, light on, and 0.43 amps, hood down, light off. The light I am referring to is the underhood light.
Does anyone know if 0.43 amps is in the correct range for "static draw" off of the battery with the car completely off? I think this reading is indicating much more current draw than 50 milliamps that JK mentioned.
Thanks, Matt
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

0.43A is 430mA and is far too much for "static draw". Something is draining current, I would start by pulling out fuses until you find the culprit.
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Great... time to pull the front seat out. Thanks for confirming that! Matt
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imho (former 90 ford escort GT owner):
Once when I had a dead battery, I did some checking with coworkers, and one said, if the clock doesn't go into sleep mode, it can be a big draw on current. Although it didn't make sense, I was determined to rule it out, by testing that first(yank the fuse), but when I checked the battery, it was way to old to even consider not replacing it. I bought the car new, so I never changed the battery so I figured it was already done.
Have you just checked if the batteries you used were 'fresh'? Plus when you say it doesn't start, you mean it cranks but doesn't fire? Wondering if you have an ignition problem too, with the humidity issues.
hth,
tom @ www.CarFleaMarket.com
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It was the vanity mirror in the passenger visor that was not shutting off. It was pulling about 190 ma off of the battery.
Recently I jammed a bunch of documents up there in a rush and didn't realize it. Doh!
Now the cover joint is stretched and doesn't turn the switch off. I taped a quarter to the mirror cover and it shuts the switch off.
I still have about 240 ma draw off of the battery due to some other electrical issues, haven't isolated the circuits yet.
Matt
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On 12 Jan 2005 10:30:11 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Ha ha ha, that would explain why mine was actually melted(the lenses).
Good catch. I ended up taking the bulbs out.

later,
tom @ www.MedicalJobList.com
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Melted???
I considered removing the bulbs myself but I went with the hack repair instead, as indicated
Matt
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On 13 Jan 2005 08:13:12 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Yeah melted, warped and bubbled. I thought it was that the plastic was sentive to parked car summer temps, but later on, I noticed a funny smell in the car, and found that I was driving around all day with the vanity light on. Those little bulbs get hot when the heat is trapped inside the flap. Wonder if anyone ever had a fire?

later,
tom @ www.MedicalJobList.com
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I guess I am lucky this happened in the winter season!
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On 13 Jan 2005 11:50:30 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Instead of taking the bulbs out, you can just snip the wire going to the visor, but that is more perm, and could effect resale value.
Hahahahahah
Sorry, I had 158k on mine when I gave it away in 99.
later,
tom
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