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Old 02-16-2011, 08:38 PM
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71 Chevelle Electrical Short

Hello all, I have 71 Chevelle w/Big Block,/Auto w/console, new wiring harnesses on engine and lights. The problem started yesterday, I started the car let run until it warmed-up, then shut it off, I noticed that when I shut it off the interior light went off also, when I tried to restart it nothing happened, I mean it was like a dead battery, I checked the battery, fully charged, I then connected my remote starter(1 wire to the battery and 1 to the purple starter wire), hit the button and it started, shut the key off and everything died, switched the key back over to start nothing happened, just put the key to the on position hit the remote button again and it started. I heard some years ago that this was a common problem in Chevelle's(70-72), so if anyone has had prior experience or know of this problem and how it can be eliminated/repaired it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks to all in advance:

JohnB231Chevelle

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Old 02-16-2011, 08:45 PM
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I seem to remember that in that time frame the power wire did NOT come off of the starter battery cable terminal. There should be a 12 gauge wire from the postive battery terminal that supplies power for everything. If that cable is broken anywhere the car will have power when it is running because everythins is getting power from the alternator. I remember a buddy having this exact same problem with an El Camino. Same car basically. I'd start there first. I seem to remember the cable runs across the radiator support from the battery .Let me know if this helps. BTW . I was the one who found the problem on my buddy's El Camino. He was outside the grocery store jumping it. Had gotten a heck of a deal on the car because of the problem. I walked up to it and showed him the problem. He gave me the deer in the headlghts look. Funny .

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Old 02-16-2011, 09:04 PM
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Adantessr, thanks for the advice I will try that tomorrow, and if it works I will be sure to let you know. Thanks again:

JohnB231Chevelle
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Old 02-17-2011, 03:56 AM
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There should be a 12 or 10 gage wire running from the batt to a terminal on the radiator support (?) or the fire wall, from the terminal back to a splice and to the fuse block thru connector...... as stated above if there is a break etc....
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Old 02-18-2011, 11:56 PM
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Well, I traced the wire, checked to make sure that there was juice to the wire, had juice started car let it run until it was hot, then shut it off, first I noticed that the parking lights had gone out, then I checked the wire from the battery to the junction point, at first no fire then for some reason it became live(juice), but still no dash lights or parking lights, car started with key but still no dash/parking lights. Lights came on for about 5 seconds, then went back out. I have a headlight switch that I will try tomorrow, but do you think that the horn relay might be shorting also? Well the interior lights, head- lights, brake lights and gauges(not gauge lights) all kept working. Also checked the fuse box and had no power to the gauges or light terminals, gotta figure something out very soon, weather is getting nice now and I want to ride.
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