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Old 05-30-2005, 10:39 PM
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i need some help. battery keeps going dead.

i'm having trouble keeping my battery from going dead. i can put a new one on it, & 3 weeks later it will be dead if i leave the battery cable hooked up. it's done this ever since i've owned the car. it a 85 ss monte carlo. when i got it, it was just a body. i bought it from a guy i knew & told him to keep all the extra's because i already had every thing that would work (engine, trans, rear end & wheels). i've had the alternator checked several times & it checks out good. i've tested to see if the battery was being drained by some thing with a test light. when i touch the test light to the battery post & the other end to the unhooked cable it will light for just a second. i figure that is the radio memory. i just have no idea where to start looking. i'm tired of it looking like a piece of ***** when ever i kill it & then unhook the battery. thanks all.

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Old 05-31-2005, 01:56 AM
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Doc here,

Quite common problem in GM..

Since you have eliminated the possibility of a drain as a source, that leaves 2 other posibilities...

Is the Charge actually reaching the battery?

And Is it the right voltage?

To answer both, get an accurate volt ohm meter, set it for Auto range, or 50 volts, Fire the car and measure across the battery...It SHOULD read between 13.75 and 14.4 volts at any speed...

If not , Check your cables for tight, clean and good bonding...No corrosion.

Next check the alternator for a proper ground...If it's on an aluminum mount bracket and is powered you have an electrolysis problem..

To cure this pull the mount, clean it (water-spray or sand blast it) get some bonding grease for aluminum wire, and apply it to the mount bolts..and reattach it.

Then locate the ground wire on your block...should be at or near the starter..Run a 10 gauge black wire to there from the alternator mount bolt..run another 10 gauge from there to the firewall, use star washers, burnish the paint, and be sure it's good and tight...

Start it again, and check the battery voltage, did it come up to 14.4? If not, then the diode pack in the alternator is probably shot...(regardless of what they tell you) Replace the diodes or the altenator...a reverse bias leak on those diodes will cause a small draw from the battery, AND the problem is two fold..because the diode (1 of 3 or 6) is bad...is allowing a few volts AC into the system, thus dropping the available DC voltage for charging..by 2 or 3 volts...or more..meaning the battery is not topping off as well as draining while just sitting a few days.

Two other possibilities exsist...Some GM's had a separate fusible link on the main alternator power wire..you need to check to see if you have one, and that it is not open.

Do you get a "Batt" light when you first turn the key on? If not replace the bulb..some GM charging systems will become disabled if the bulb goes out...I have no idea if yours is this way or not...but if it's out..it's a good clue...

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