Mystery Battery Drain

courtesy of Bob, The Auto Answer Man


Hello,
I have a Chevy with a big problem. Batteries go dead when the ignition is off. We have put three new batteries in over the last 6 months. Some said they were too small. The last one I put in was what the book called for. It is 1000amp / 800 cold cranking. I have checked for drainage with my voltmeter at several stages and don't see any drain. My son-in-law who was a mechanic for 30 years helped me check all the circuits at the fuse box and found no problem.

I took it to an Auto Electrical Specialty Shop. They charged me and said nothing is wrong. "Bring it in when the problem exists." That's a laugh How do I bring it in dead! When I go away for a couple of days I unhook the battery cable. I am at a loss. I feel it may be an intermittent short, but, don't know what to do next. It is a Caprice Classic with the a V8 and automatic
Walt H.

Walt,
Here are a few things to try. One, remove the negative cable from the terminal and put a test light between the cable and the battery post. If the light glows, there is a drain. To find what circuit is causing the drain, remove one fuse at a time until the light goes away. Then, install them one at a time. When the light glows there is a drain, when the light is off, the bad circuit was removed. You may not get the light to turn off. In that case, it means that there is a drain in some other circuit that does not run through the fuse panel. First place I would look at is the starter. Starters have been known to short out at the solenoid and cause a constant drain to ground.
Good Luck!
Drive Safely!
Bob, The Auto Answer Man


Have a car care question? Visit our automotive center and see if we've already answered it or a similar question.

Stay Connected with TDS






TDS Pinner Of The Month




Subscribe to TDS Newsletters

Join over 250,000 other subscribers!

Join Fido!

Discounted movie tickets
Sign up for Savvy Savings at TDS and get a free membership for discounted movie tickets!

Your Email:


The Dollar Stretcher
Dollar Stretcher Parents
Dollar Stretcher Tips
Surviving Tough Times
Financial Independence
The Computer Lady
Computer Lady Lessons
Healthy Foods

Your Email:


View the TDS Privacy Policy.