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NYOFP4RJ3CHRIS
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Discussion Starter #1
89 Honda Accord carbetuted four banger.

This car was at one of the "better" (expensive) shops in town. After four hundred dollars, it was dragged in to our shop with electrical problems and was placed on the back burner until we had time for it. I thought sure as **** I wasn't going to fix it very easily if the other shop couldn't do it.

Problem- The other garage had started hacking the wiring in the charge circuit in an attempt to isolate the problem. This made me feel better about being able to fix it easily.

Problem- The battery terminal would spark like crazy and draw over twenty amps when hooked up. The two front marker lights would come on and nothing else worked.

I took and isolated different circuits until I found the culprit circuit. It was the charge circuit, or at least the wire the other garage routed in place of the original. It was the main hot from the alternator. I called the other garage and talked to the tech about what he did. He explained that the alternator would only spark when grounded. Sure enough, I could touch the alt housing to the ground post and the wire to the positive and it sparked like crazy.

I thought okay bad alternator, wrong, it checked out just fine. So I decided to place that problem aside and get on with all the other problems. After pulling every single fuse the marker lights would not go off. Battery was fully charged, circuit breakers/fuses were all fine and yet nothing would work.

Anyone want to guess what the problem was? It was so simple it'll make you shake your head and wonder "How in the ****"......
 

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NYOFP4RJ3CHRIS
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Discussion Starter #3
Gr8 '48 bow tie said:
Starter relay short circuit?
Al
Good guess, that's one of the first circuits I eliminated while troubleshooting. Not the problem.
 

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Usually when a car gets weird like that I go for the grounds first. I'll guess dirty connection at the groung cable at the battery.
 

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Corroded and shorted electrical fittings at the main harness fuse box or the under dash fuse box caused by road splash.
 

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What?? No Technician A and Technician B? I'd say somebody got creative wiring the stereo and spliced into something they shouldn't have.
 

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NYOFP4RJ3CHRIS
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Discussion Starter #14
a67tempest455 said:
were the battery cables switched?:confused:
Oh man, you're almost right!

The battery had somehow reversed polarity. I haven't had the chance to talk to the owner yet (he's doing a few gigs out of town). I'm kind of anxious to talk to him and find out how it happened, maybe he charged the battery backwards or something (the charging system checks out fine). I do know he said it didn't do this until he had someone do a tune up to it.

All the damage that happened from the reverse polarities is the fuel cut-off relay and the head light retractor module both popped a couple diodes as well as a couple fuses needed replaced.

We got him a new battery. I think I'll hook a light bulb to his old one and leave it on until it's dead. Then I'll give it a slow recharge and have me an extra.

This is kinda like this one job where they wired the mobile phone so it was powered from the injector harness. Every time the phone rang, the car would stumble or stall if at an idle. :drunk: That's not one that I had personally experienced.
 
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