I have a '99 Ram that I haven't driven in about 14 days. This morning the
main battery was dead (the seat belt tensioners wouldn't even release
because they had no power). I suspect I may have to replace the main battery
after being drained so thoroughly. I have a battery isolator/combiner which
allowed me to start the truck and after a few minutes of charging it idled
smoothly and I was able to drive it the rest of the day without incident.
The main battery is only a few years old. It has sat for up to a week
before without any problem. I haven't had a chance to have the main battery
tested or to check my "truck off" current draw. So either...
1) The main battery needs service/replacement.
2) The isolator/combiner is drawing current from the main battery.
3) I have a current draw somewhere unrelated to the isolator/combiner.
4) 14 days is too long to allow the truck to sit without a battery
What is the "normal" current draw while the truck is shutdown, and how many
days should I expect a stock (or replacement of like kind) battery to sit
idle and still be able to provide cranking amps?
you say the battery is only a few years old. how many is a few? down here
in the south where we get periods of 100 degree days it has a tendency to
kill batteries during the heat. what is your climate like? i would figure
out how old that battery is and test it before i went looking for more
complicated issues. if the battery checks out then dig deeper.
The battery is about 2 years old, the climate here is almost perfect except
for the wind. We complain about the heat when it reaches 90F and the cold
when it reaches 50F, (yet we don't complain when the winds are at 35+ MPH
from noon to sunset, unless it's a "cold" day) so I think the battery should
be good, but I don't know how long it sat at the autoparts store before I
bought it. I had a 6 year old battery in my Scout II tested while I was
looking into starting problems with the Scout and it held 650 amps (the
battery's rated CCA) for a minute with no problem. I realize the age and
performance of that battery doesn't translate to this battery.
I also recieved some good information about the ignition off drain (IOD)
this truck should experience and a few tips on how to trouble shoot, so I
think I'm armed with the knowledge I need, now all I need is the time.
If I find that the IOD is within parameters, I'll have the battery tested.
Put a DC ammeter in line with your battery and cable and see how many amps
it's drawing and then disconnect one thing at a time until you see it drop
significantly. Often times the alternator can have a broken diode that will
suck the life out of a battery, and yet still charge the battery. Start
with the alternator.
Go back to one battery for these tests, remove the stuff in between the two
0.46 is borderline. Best below 0.40 if you can.
Generally speaking make sure your test is done about 30 minutes after
the last thing done on the vehicle (close doors, don't reopen them,
etc.) wait 30 minutes then test. Some circuits will draw current for a
while then shut themselves off after an predetermined interval.
Thanks. I know the CTM should shut off after about 2 minutes and the SCTM
after about 30 minutes. The problem is my digital multimeter shuts off
after 15 minutes, and my ammeter isn't sensitive enough to see a difference.
I should get an old fashioned analog multimeter with the correct
sensitivity. Everything is working (at least for now), so I've learned how
to live with it.
It has to do with the seat belt system they had to come up with for the quad
Belts are not attached to the body but to the seat structure. They are
electrically locked in a collision.
The quad cab has a motion sensor under the seat as the seat belts aren't
anchored to the door posts.
There is a wiring harness under the seat that connects to the motion sensing
device to lock the seat belts in case of collision.
The plug that connects this harness under the seat shorts and you have
current flowing all the time.
If you would like to know how to fix this drop me a note.
Drop the j in the email address.
Sorry guys ... been very busy lately and truck is in storage.
I will go over there this week and get the info on which conductor on that
harness that you have to cut and splice through. You have to bypass the
plug or replace the wiring harness under that seat to fix this problem.
Finally got a chance to have a look at the truck in storage.
The fix is to splice the light blue conductor going into the multi conductor
plug under the driver's seat. Cut the wire on both sides of the plug and
butt splice it around the connector.
The problem is an internal short in the multi conductor plug under the seat
that develops over time.
Sorry for the delay.
Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.