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Old 05-22-2009, 05:12 PM
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Short circuite=Short fuse

Hello everyone,
I am at my wit's end and was hoping that anyone with a 1980 C3 might be able to help me out. A few years ago (as expected with any old chevy) I started experiencing electrical problems and am not sure if they are all related or purely coincidental. in short I have a short; if i hook-up the battery the terminal arcs indicating that something is drawing a significant load. If i leave the brand-new battery hooked up over night the after-market alarm (installed by a previous owner) eventually sounds, very faintly as it drains the battery dry even when missing its fuse. the original anti-theft does not seem to function at all, as i have tried to re-connect it. If the power door lock switches (now replaced) are connected they continually draw the locking actuators to the lock position and the switches litterally burn your hand (this happened w/ stock too). granted this all seems to have really started when I tried, and failed, to install keyless entry but I had since remove all elements and mended all wires/grounds to absolute certainty. things that used to work don't anymore such as the new lighter socket I installed, hook anything up and it blows the fuse. turn on the defogger and the radio fades off. I don't really care about the latter any more I just don't want to jump start my car every day (the alternator is new too) and i would like to be able to lock my car when i go someplace. if ANYBODY knows what could be shorting please tell me now. ohh and by the way the AT Horn has been removed when i tried to restore the syst and on its orig hot and grounded it continually sounds (if that helps) but i know a hot grounded to anything will sound so probably not.

please help i cant afford to have a mech look at her, personally i dont trust them when a vette rolls through the doors you can see the $_$ in the mechs eyes. I would love to be able to drive her safely this summer since she has not seen the open road since 2003.

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Old 05-22-2009, 07:22 PM
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I would look at the wires you taped into or cut to install the keyless first. Something is wired wrong for sure. The locks activating is a sure sign that they are getting power when they should not be.
If you unplug the switches do the locks still go down.
I dont think a car that old had a module for the locks so it should be an easy find.
Dod you cut and re-connect any wires? If so start there. Also take a good look to be sure no wires are melted together.
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Old 05-22-2009, 07:33 PM
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I would get an ohm meter an start looking for the shorts. Remove the battery + and start taking ohm readings from the power wire of any suspected device to ground ( be suspicuous of any readings that are almost zero). On the door locks maybe you can compare the resistance of the two door lock solenoids. Also make sure your door lock switches are not closed all the time causing the lock solenoid to be energized all the time.


good luck
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Old 05-22-2009, 07:37 PM
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ty

thx for the reply. none of the wires i used were ever cut, just tapped in accordance with the instructions. the locks no longer engage when the switches are removed. i thought maybe one of the switches had a short on it for sure since it had corrosion connecting 2 contacts that shouldn't be connected but the switch checked out ok and i replaced it any way with the same results. i've chkd the wires over and over and there appears to be no meltage or burning smells but i will check again the next time i get to work on it. thx again
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Old 05-22-2009, 07:46 PM
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heres a link to a diagram

Wiring Diagram
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Old 05-22-2009, 08:23 PM
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One way to at least isolate what circuit has a shorted component, is to first remove the negative terminal from the battery.

Run your VOM between the neg. batt. post and the terminal, set on VDC (to begin with. Amps can also be used). This can also be accomplished w/nothing more than a 12VDC 1156 bulb w/wires soldered to it to go between the battery and batt. terminal.

Shut off the interior lights if a door's open, under hood light, glove box light, etc. You will still have a draw from the clock and ECM at least, you can either remove those fuses, or else account for them as a small draw or voltage on the gage.

Start removing fuses, one by one until you locate the circuit that is faulty (the voltage and/or amperage will go down, or the bulb will dim or go out). If using voltage, when a circuit is found to be energized, switch to see what the amperage is.
From this, you can then look closer for the short or fused wires, or whatever the problem may turn out to be.
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Old 05-22-2009, 09:36 PM
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Rob Here!


The Process of elimination as stated above is your 1st means of attack.

My Impression is ; something got crossed ,shorted /melted to another system .
This would explain the "ghosts in the machine " syndrome you have going on.

In my experience back tracking over the work you did ,then searching for other damage is where to begin.

On my Wifes 71 Skylark the reverse lights never worked, when I got around to the job the turn singles & brake lights were out also.

This repair wound up being a multi level problem & the revers lights problem was so off the wall I still don't understand it , I fixed it thou.

I worked it from the rear to the front untill I found this wire to no where that caused the lights not to work.

Start @ one point & work you way into it you may find yourself starting @ the Battery & inspecting every inch until you find a broken or melted wire.

Feel free to post here We will help as much as we can.







R
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Old 05-22-2009, 10:10 PM
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take a close look at where the main wire harness goes through the firewall to the fuse block my 79 vette had a short there and took me weeks to find it
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Old 05-22-2009, 10:33 PM
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[quote] please help i cant afford to have a mech look at her, personally i dont trust them when a vette rolls through the doors you can see the $_$ in the mechs eyes. [quote]

Mine Don't!!!!!..........Not even Blown!

Hey Chet, do you have a link to the ignition switch wiring diagram, and or, the fuse box?

The afore mentioned procedure of pulling fuses to find a short is correctly recommended. I now use, one of those annoying key in ignition beepers, wired with a Bosch universal relay, and a back probe to find electrical shorts.

I have a feeling you have 2 wires crossed in the ignition switch wiring.
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Old 05-22-2009, 10:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carsavvycook
Mine Don't!!!!!..........Not even Blown!
Good man.

When I read,
Quote:
i dont trust them when a vette rolls through the doors
it gave me pause. But I chalked it up to the OP maybe having had a bad experience along the line somewhere.

Quote:
I now use, one of those annoying key in ignition beepers, wired with a Bosch universal relay, and a back probe to find electrical shorts.
Sounds cool (NPI lol). Anything like a "noisy" test light? Or is it set up differently?

Last edited by cobalt327; 05-23-2009 at 08:17 AM. Reason: Add quote from OP.
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Old 05-22-2009, 11:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cobalt327
Good man. I read that, and it gave me pause. But I chalked it up to the OP maybe having had a bad experience along the line somewhere.

Sounds cool (NPI lol). Anything like a "noisy" test light? Or is it set up differently?
Hand made, and wired. It works great when working by yourself. I have it wired to the relay 'key on' trigger connection. I can hear it over 90 feet away, depending on the back ground noise.
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Old 05-23-2009, 02:29 PM
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[QUOTE=carsavvycook][quote] please help i cant afford to have a mech look at her, personally i dont trust them when a vette rolls through the doors you can see the $_$ in the mechs eyes.
Quote:

Mine Don't!!!!!..........Not even Blown!

Hey Chet, do you have a link to the ignition switch wiring diagram, and or, the fuse box?

The afore mentioned procedure of pulling fuses to find a short is correctly recommended. I now use, one of those annoying key in ignition beepers, wired with a Bosch universal relay, and a back probe to find electrical shorts.

I have a feeling you have 2 wires crossed in the ignition switch wiring.
I just did a quick google search, there is all kinds of free diagrams. That same site may even have something.
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Old 05-23-2009, 03:13 PM
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[QUOTE=T-bucket23][QUOTE=carsavvycook]
Quote:
please help i cant afford to have a mech look at her, personally i dont trust them when a vette rolls through the doors you can see the $_$ in the mechs eyes.

I just did a quick google search, there is all kinds of free diagrams. That same site may even have something.
I would have searched google, but my browser kept locking up. I found a book, that I believe has a complete wiring diagram in it. When I get some quiet time after work, I will scour through it, and post my thoughts.
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Old 05-23-2009, 08:18 PM
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[QUOTE=carsavvycook]
Quote:

The afore mentioned procedure of pulling fuses to find a short is correctly recommended. I now use, one of those annoying key in ignition beepers, wired with a Bosch universal relay, and a back probe to find electrical shorts.

.

Is this a home made sound producing continuity checker?




R
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Old 05-23-2009, 08:52 PM
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[QUOTE=Rob Keller]
Quote:
Originally Posted by carsavvycook


Is this a home made sound producing continuity checker?




R

Yes, it only takes a few hours of trial and error to build. You need to figure out which wire connections on the chimer module to use. The rest of the wiring is cut and dry.
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