Author Topic: Battery Problems  (Read 703 times)

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Offline Clifford

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #15 on: January 13, 2019, 10:20:03 am »
On your next battery you should consider upgrading to the 850 CCA battery. Two things tend to kill a battery excessive heat and excessive power drain while not running. Also another issue to consider is high amps recharging your battery when your vehicle is running. If your battery is getting overcharged it will boil off the acid in your battery.

So summing it up, issues to consider:

Is the battery being over charged?

Summer heat (as well as overcharging) can be an issue. A lot of vehicle come from the factory with an insulation blanket thing around the battery to protect the battery from underhood heat. Sometimes these blanket things get pictched during ownership of the previous owner.   

Get the larger 850 CCA battery.

A little blinking LED blinking light really shouldn't be using that much energy. Look/trouble-shoot for other battery drain issues.

The Big Red Dog

Offline BOSS-STANG

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #16 on: January 13, 2019, 11:20:27 am »
Thats what I'm thinking is getting a Motorcraft BXT 65 850 battery. I don't seem to have any problems in warm weather but the last battery I had crapped. out in Aug. of 2016. It was only a year and a half old. So many possibilities from all who have responded my head is about to spin off. Relays and modules and sensors oh my. I hate modern technology. >:(

Offline Clifford

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #17 on: January 13, 2019, 11:12:02 pm »
I have an older Ford van with the 7.3L diesel engine. It has two batteries and due to the limited space under the hood one battery is smaller than the other. The owners manual suggests if I have to replace one battery I should replace them both. Problem is they both don't go bad at the same time. So I figure why not just replace the one that is bad/weak so that's what I do. When I start having starting issues due to one of the batteries being weak how do I know which battery is the problem battery? Your local chain auto parts store has a portable battery load/life testing meter. They will check your battery/batteries for free and this meter will tell you how much life is left in your battery. You don't have to take the battery out of your vehicle to get it checked. This is what I do so I know which is the weak battery that needs replacing.

A cold battery (like during cold winter weather) has less available energy/power for starting. A "weak" cold battery will have even less energy for starting. Bottom line is if you have an old/weak battery you need to replace it. Let your local auto parts store check your battery and if it needs replacing, replace it. But it doesn't mater if its 650 or 850 CCA, if its bad or weak it will give you problems in cold temperatures. Get it replaced.

My 3rd battery is starting to give me problems. I live in western NY and we do have cold winters. I don't drive the truck all the much in the winter. At the moment if I let the truck set for 3 or 4 days it doesn't crank hard enough  to start so I get out the charger and with in 5 minutes of quick charging it starts. I'm wondering if my anti theft indicator which blinks every 2 seconds when the ignition is of is enough to run the battery down during cold weather? Or could it be my alternator charging intermittently?

This symptom sounds like a battery that is weak/old and it needs to be replaced. Have your local auto part store put their meter on it and give you a battery diagnosis.

A 850 CCA battery will make a world of difference over a 650 CCA battery and you will happy you made the upgrade.

Its been a great truck. But I have gone through 3 batteries. The original and 2 replacement Motorcraft batteries BTX 65 650s. I have had it in to have the system check and no open circuits were found. The two replacement batteries last about a year and a half. My 3rd battery is starting to give me problems.

Excessive underhood heat and over-heating from overcharging will shorten the life of any battery. Showing no open circuits will not tell you if your charging system is over-charging your battery.

 
I live in western NY and we do have cold winters. I don't drive the truck all the much in the winter. At the moment if I let the truck set for 3 or 4 days it doesn't crank hard enough to start so I get out the charger and with in 5 minutes of quick charging it starts. I'm wondering if my anti theft indicator which blinks every 2 seconds when the ignition is of is enough to run the battery down during cold weather?

No, not if it is a good battery. Yes possibly if it is a weak/old battery.

Or could it be my alternator charging intermittently?

No, not in my opinion. I doubt this is the issue.
The Big Red Dog

Offline rhjanes

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #18 on: January 14, 2019, 07:29:56 am »
I have an older Ford van with the 7.3L diesel engine. It has two batteries and due to the limited space under the hood one battery is smaller than the other. The owners manual suggests if I have to replace one battery I should replace them both. Problem is they both don't go bad at the same time. So I figure why not just replace the one that is bad/weak so that's what I do. When I start having starting issues due to one of the batteries being weak how do I know which battery is the problem battery? Your local chain auto parts store has a portable battery load/life testing meter. They will check your battery/batteries for free and this meter will tell you how much life is left in your battery. You don't have to take the battery out of your vehicle to get it checked. This is what I do so I know which is the weak battery that needs replacing.

I've had my two battery diesel for 20 years now.  Early on, I also tried to only replace one battery, when only one failed.  Every time, I wound up replacing the second battery within 4 months.  The weak battery, means the good battery is getting hammered to start the diesel.  I belong to a Texas Power Stroke forum and everyone also reported the same issue.  Better to just replace them both when one goes bad. 
If the alternator goes out, I also replace both batteries.
On testing, I actually own a load tester.  It's a handy tool!  But when testing a vehicle with dual batteries, you need to completely disconnect one of the batteries cables before any test.  Isolate the batteries.  Otherwise, the good battery (which you don't know which is which), will compensate for the bad one. 

Offline BOSS-STANG

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #19 on: January 14, 2019, 10:56:24 am »
Could it be that my alternator is over charging? Last week I had to top off the cells with distilled water. The voltage regulator not functioning right would do that right? But the regulators are built inside the alternator. So can a shop test the internals of a alternator/voltage regulator?

Offline Clifford

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #20 on: January 14, 2019, 02:27:55 pm »
I've had my two battery diesel for 20 years now.  Early on, I also tried to only replace one battery, when only one failed.  Every time, I wound up replacing the second battery within 4 months.  The weak battery, means the good battery is getting hammered to start the diesel.  I belong to a Texas Power Stroke forum and everyone also reported the same issue.  Better to just replace them both when one goes bad. 

My Van is a 1996. I too have had it for 20 years. I have not had an issue with losing the second battery within 6 months. I have also replaced my alternator twice during my ownership. Batteries were not replaced at that time. I have 280,000 miles on my van presently.

On testing, I actually own a load tester.  It's a handy tool!  But when testing a vehicle with dual batteries, you need to completely disconnect one of the batteries cables before any test.  Isolate the batteries.  Otherwise, the good battery (which you don't know which is which), will compensate for the bad one.

This is true, with dual batteries diesel powered vehicles one needs to isolate/disconnect one battery in order to check each battery. I didn't point that out since BOSS-STANG's truck is not a diesel and only has one battery. I wouldn't mind having a load tester to do this test at home, but the auto parts stores do it for free right in their parking lot. Its a simple test to let you know what shape your battery is in. If one expects an issue with their battery its easy to go get it checked at your local auto parts store. Like I said they do it for free.

Could it be that my alternator is over charging? Last week I had to top off the cells with distilled water. The voltage regulator not functioning right would do that right? But the regulators are built inside the alternator. So can a shop test the internals of a alternator/voltage regulator?

Could your alternator be over-charging? Possibly yes, but not necessarily.

The voltage regulator not functioning right would do that right? Typically yes.

But the regulators are built inside the alternator. So can a shop test the internals of a alternator/voltage regulator? Yes on today's vehicles the voltage regulator is internal to the alternator. Yes, it can be tested both in-vehicle or your alternator can be bench-tested for function. Most decent auto part stores can bench test one for you. If your vehicle is over-charging your battery it would help explain why you are having to replace batteries more frequently than normally.

There must be a reason you are going through batteries. They all can't be bad batteries from the manufacturer. Batteries can go bad for a few various reasons. Excessive heat from overcharging can be one of them. It only makes sense to check to see if you do or don't have an over-charging issue. If you are adding distilled water to your battery that might be symptom of an overcharging issue.

In my opinion first check to see if you have a good battery in your vehicle currently. If its good then go get the charging system checked. If the battery is weak and only has a 1/4 of its life left consider replacing it. If replacing, replace it with a better 850 CCA battery and then go get a charging system check.

Nothing wrong with the suggestion of having a trickle charger, but that still won't solve the initial issue (root cause) of why you are going through batteries at an abnormal rate. The suggestion of checking with a Ford dealer on looking up service bulletins on this issue should be looked into too. 
« Last Edit: January 14, 2019, 05:45:38 pm by Clifford »
The Big Red Dog

Offline rhjanes

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #21 on: January 14, 2019, 04:52:29 pm »
Clifford and I have had opposite experiences with two battery diesels! 

Offline BOSS-STANG

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #22 on: January 23, 2019, 09:17:44 am »
Think I found my battery problem. For quite some time I have had tire pressure problems. My 2 front tires kept losing air, around 15 -20 pounds every few days. Being lackadaisical in trying to find the real source I just filled them with air over and over again. This activated my low pressure warning light and causing a drain on the battery while the truck set for a few days. The low pressure sensor draws juice off the battery even when the ignition is off I believe. So I finally said enough.

 I took it to a tire shop and they pulled the 2 front tires and found a bit of corrosion on the rim and a bit more where the wheel weights were hooked on. So the tire tech wire wheeled the rims, put on new wheel weights, applied some sealer on the bead and balanced the tires and installed 2 new valve stems. Have had no issues as of yet. Battery seems to crank really well after setting for a few days and even the other day when we had sub zero temps she fired right up. I need to have the 2 rears checked just make sure. Didn't have time the other day to have all 4 done but at least I believe that was my problem. It only cost me $67 total. Cheaper than throwing money at a battery I didn't really need.  :)

Offline CaBossFan

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #23 on: January 23, 2019, 11:11:47 am »
BOSS-STANG - Sounds like you found your problem with batteries failing.  Do you recall having the tire pressure indicator light being on when you first had a battery fail? - Mark

Offline BOSS-STANG

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #24 on: January 23, 2019, 03:04:41 pm »
Yes I did but didn't think much of it. This new technology of today is pretty touchy feely. I don't know how any tech could have ever found the problem as I would not have driven it to a shop when the low tire pressure warning light was on. Last winter my check engine light came on. Went to Auto Zone and they put a code reader on it and the code stated bad gas tank evap. solenoid. I went of Youtube Collage and found a video on the topic that I was having a problem with. The guy stated before you replace you evap. solenoid check the green wire coming out of the harness. Mine was corroded and pull right off. Fixed the wire and BINGO engine light went off. They would have charged me $1200 at the dealer to replace the whole harness. But all the suggestions from all the board members here started to help me put this puzzle together. So many thanks to every one.  ;)

Offline CaBossFan

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #25 on: January 23, 2019, 03:18:50 pm »
BOSS-STANG - I think you solved your battery problem - good job!  I remember when I was working at The Boeing Company and we had a significant problem that needed to be addressed and no one had any ideas.  Breaking the silence, the team leader said "Mark, do you have any ideas?"  I knew then we were really in trouble!!!

Offline BOSS-STANG

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2019, 03:35:59 pm »
CaBossFan,

Sometimes the answers are right in front of you or where you least expect it. I'm glad it was an easy fix. You can really chase your tail on some of these problems. Where did you work for Boeing ? Was it in Kansas ? I have an ole war buddy who worked there.

Offline CaBossFan

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Re: Battery Problems
« Reply #27 on: January 23, 2019, 03:58:26 pm »
BOSS-STANG - I starting working in Long Beach with McDonnell-Douglas before they merged with Boeing.  I then went over to the facility we had in Carson on the C-17 Program and then went back to Long Beach, then to Huntington Beach, then to Seal Beach, then to Torrance.  When Boeing sold the Torrance operation to L-3, I decided to go to Northrop Grumman.  I found that having long-term employment in the aerospace industry was even worse than the years I spent with General Motors!