Battery problem? - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
Hotrodders.com -- Hot Rod Forum



Register FAQ Search Today's Posts Unanswered Posts Auto Escrow Insurance Auto Loans
Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board > Tech Help> Electrical
User Name
Password
lost password?   |   register now

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 04-27-2004, 12:29 PM
Member
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 139
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Battery problem?

I think my battery is dead it is a 7 year battery that has 5 years of use.

Sometimes it will start the car spin the starter no problem. Then other times it will spin the starter slow and go click,click,click. The funny thing is it may do the click click thing and if I wait 2 seconds it will spin the starter perfectly. Heat has nothing to do with it as it happens cold or hot.

The alternator is a fairly new one wire. It charges fine.

The car sat a month during winter and lost its charge by the computer and radio memory. So the battery has been hooked to a charger.

Normally I would think instantly it is the battery but the random response of clicking and starting has me thinking it could be something else. Terminals are clean and tight. Bad cell in the battery?

What do you guys think? The battery is 5 years old....

    Advertisement
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 04-27-2004, 09:53 PM
poncho62's Avatar
Out of the Loop Moderator
 
Last wiki edit: Streetbeasts links
Last journal entry: at car show
Last photo:
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Hanover, Ontario, Canada
Age: 62
Posts: 17,028
Wiki Edits: 5

Thanks: 24
Thanked 330 Times in 257 Posts
Could be the battery, get it load tested. A 5 year old battery, especially one that has been sitting around always should be suspect.


Could also be the starter. Bad spot on the armature etc.
__________________
Ontario Rodders
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 04-29-2004, 04:02 AM
malc's Avatar
Living At The Speed Of Life
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Espaņa Right Coast
Posts: 3,322
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 117
Thanked 157 Times in 129 Posts
Most of my batteries have copped out at three years. I
just threw out a four year old, it lost itīs charge once completely and never recovered. I read a long time ago that as the plates deteriorate there is a build up on the battery floor, this shorts out
and kills cells.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 04-29-2004, 12:06 PM
galaxieguy3's Avatar
Member
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Gouverneur, NY
Age: 47
Posts: 170
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Since it might click, then will work fine after two seconds, I would take a look at all the battery, starter/solenoid, and ground connections. Take them off and clean them. If by any chance you have the replacement type battery terminals that have the metal strap with two bolts that clamp down on the battery cable, scrap them, those are the most worthless troublesome pieces of garbage on the planet.
If the battery were bad, it would be consistent... just as you surmised in your post.
Also, it is possible the starter solenoid may be bad, and still work intermittently. I have experienced this with GM type starters. A copper disk inside the solenoid gets hot and burnt where it contacts the stud out to the starter motor, and eventually wont make good contact.

Just out curiosity, what is the vehicle you are having the problem with?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 04-29-2004, 01:48 PM
Member
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 139
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
It is a 1940 ford coupe. It has a 350 engine that I put in maybe 8 years ago. At that time most if not all parts were new or store rebuilt.

Not sure if that helps given the tolerance of crap they can call rebuilt.

That is why I hate to run out and buy a battery but I find it hard to believe it would be the starter assembly. Unless the store I bought it from bought poor rebuilds.

I don't think the battery has a lot of life in it since it died after only sitting a month.

The terminals are the after market ones you described.

What is the best connector for this job? Where can I buy it?

I have a cut off switch but I hardly ever use it now. It is the fork lift kind all the street rod co. sell.

I will clean all the connections this weekend.

Just hate to get stranded!

Tim
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 04-29-2004, 07:55 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: mn
Age: 35
Posts: 344
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
battery

first have it load tested then replace the battery if you ask me a 7 yr warranty says that if it fails after 5 yrs you still have a warranty so you buy the same battery to replace it so they make another sale.
Jesse
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 04-30-2004, 11:32 AM
galaxieguy3's Avatar
Member
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Gouverneur, NY
Age: 47
Posts: 170
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
As Poncho62 and 60convert said, you can have the battery load tested to see if it is good or not. I know places like Advance Auto Parts will load test it for free.
Again, if your battery is bad, it is not going to give you trouble, then work ok 2 seconds later.
If your battery tests ok, check for a draw with everything turned off. It shouldnt go dead after sitting for that short a period of time.
Make sure the battery posts and terminals are clean. Whether you want to replace the terminals is up to you. The best thing would be replace the battery cables with new ones of proper length, complete with terminal ends that are crimped and sealed. The problem with the type you are using is that the wire is exposed where its bolted under the straps and will eventually corrode to the point that they no longer make good contact. You could easily take them apart and clean them up (clean wire strands also) real good if you opt to keep them.
Since it is a GM starter, you may want to check the starter once you eliminate the other things. The disk inside the starter that I was referring to can be turned, and may save you buying a new one.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 04-30-2004, 03:53 PM
docvette's Avatar
Hotrodders.com Moderator
 
Last wiki edit: Rebuild an alternator Last photo:
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Lafayette, california
Age: 62
Posts: 7,362
Wiki Edits: 12

Thanks: 0
Thanked 6 Times in 3 Posts
Battery Bust...

Hi Doc Here.

Just about everything everyone has said here is good advise.

I'm thinkin' here you may be suffering from 2 separate problems.

First on a 7 year battery, that has lasted 5 years in a cold climate, has probably given it's "all"... (some batteries get to "all" sooner than others...)I'd replace it Now anyway to avoid "Jumpus Interruptus in future Cruises....To Do a quickie, when the thing is low, if you have a volt meter, strap that puppy across the battery on the 12 volt (or higher) range...If it shows like, 10.2 volts ya gotta bad cell...

Batteries over time Especially when sitting seasonally will develop a thing called "Whisker Growth" This is a "Strand" of Lead,sluff and antimony that forms on the side / bottom of the plate. All the impurities will collect here. (follows the path of current flow at charge and discharge. If you ever looked into a Battery cell fillers when discharged, you will note the electrolyte is higher towards the plus side than the - side and tends to level out on charge all cells being equal, because the Electrolyte is "sucked" back into the plates) As the Whisker gets bigger and longer it will contact the junk settled in the Sluff Box (very bottom of the Battery) This causes an indirect electro~mechanical Short of that cell. Individual Cell Voltages Can range from 1.7 volts to 2.4 Volts depending on the type of cell and rate of Charge / Discharge This voltage/current is additive throughout out the battery Hence a set of cells operating at 2.4 volts individually, will yield 14.4 volts static (no load) Lose a cell, and that voltage/ current will significantly drop.
Plate separators (individual insulators) Can deteriorate or warp rapidly under Deep cycle type usage (High draw, short term usage, little, no, or overcharge..like a boat battery application) When this happens the same applies..you lose the cell.

A load test is usually quick, simple and most oft a freebie...it'll tell ya right away if the thing is gonna live or not.

SECOND: After you replace or eliminate the Battery as a source of irritation in your life, You may want to check the Starter / Solenoid arrangement.

I noted you said: even when It's like, all good..It'll sometimes click then a few minutes later light right off.

I also noted that you said it was a General Mystery 350, So I be thinkin' here... Do you have the proper shims in the starter? And a proper heatsheild around the starter Solenoid? Either one of these Can "Jam" up the works one time and be fine the next.

The starter Solenoid will heat up from the header pipes rapidly and "Stick" the metal plunger until it cools down just enough to slide freely again. If not supplied, General Mystery Makes a bolt on heat shield that goes on around the Starter / Solenoid to cure this problem.

Check the Battery First, Then if the the other is still in evidence..Look at the starter System.

Hope this is some help.
Doc
__________________
Aftermarket Solutions
Electronic & Electrical
Innovations
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 05-01-2004, 02:36 PM
Member
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 139
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanks for the help.

I have not had a chance to clean the terminals.

The problem happened last night. The car was run 1 hour before went to start it and it did the whirl click thing twice. I tried again this time leaving the ignition on for 2 sec before trying, it started right up. Coincidence? In any case I will buy a new battery to eliminate one possibility.

I have never seen a battery that can not decide if it is alive or dead.

Is this plate you guys are talking about in the starter itself or in the solenoid? If I had to buy a new starter how do I know if i have the16x or the 15x tooth flex-plate? Or just take the old one and let match it up?

I don't think I have a heat problem as I running the old cast iron ram horn exhaust manifolds. The exhaust is routed thru the frame which directs the pipe away from the starter.

Thank you
Tim
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 07-22-2004, 09:22 AM
Member
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 139
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thumbs up

Just an update.

It was the battery. It was load tested and failed. It also had a small leak.



Thanks for the help.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #11 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2005, 10:09 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: SE TX
Posts: 1
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
One Wire?

The Doc has said it all...Just about. You stated that your car is "rigged up" with a one wire charging system. None of the GM cars originally had one wire setups. With the configuration you have, there is a strong probability that you are over-charging your battery. If you want your charging system to work properly, I would suggest setting up a three wire system. With the one wire setup, your alternator is gathering current requirements from a remote location(in your car it may not be THAT remote) such as the bus on the horn relay. As it senses more current draw its output increases to maintain 14.4 volts+- throughout the electrical system. In a one wire setup in which the charge wire is short and goes straight to the battery you could easily be pumping more ampereage into the battery than it is designed to handle. In the original three wire system, the current draw is still measured remotely, but the charge wire is also remote, connecting roughly in the middle of the Full-Time hot side of the electrical system. The charge wire should also be smaller and longer than what you may think(12ga@8ft). This allows the regulator in the alternator(10si,12si,etc...) to increase output to compensate for headlights and other high load components without overcharging, due to the attenuation through the smaller longer wire. Remember, the battery in your car is designed for STARTING. The alternator is designed for the operation of the balance of your electrical system.

One additional benefit of the three wire system is consistently bright dash, tail and headlights.(See the MAD tech)

One drawback(you may think) is all the wires that used to go to your starter. This is easily solved by installing a junction block for the legs of the electrical system to commonly connect to. A 71 Chevelle or El Camino has a junction block located on the radiator support, inside passenger side next to the radiator which is handily acquired at salvage yards(no one seems to know what they are for!).

Since your car is obviously not wired like a factory GM this my sound like useless information,but all electrical systems function in the same manner(Physics and all that stuff). There is a very good diagram and write-up about the three wire system on MAD's website. You could wire this system yourself in one day if you plan it right.

Just remember...The sensing and charging wires both need to be in the "middle" of the electrical system, keeping in mind that you may actually want to move the junction "closer" to the high current relays(headlights etc..) to ensure those components get all the juice they need. Note that a 60 watt bulb draws 60 watts..PERIOD.

One wires are great...For tractors.

http://www.madelectrical.com/electri...hreewire.shtml
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #12 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2005, 07:45 PM
subman17's Avatar
Member
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Age: 34
Posts: 90
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Umm, really old post
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Recent Electrical posts with photos

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name (usually not your first and last name), your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:57 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
Copyright Hotrodders.com 1999 - 2012. All Rights Reserved.