Battery draining -
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post #1 of 6 Old 10-20-2011, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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1984 CJ7 
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Battery draining

Can a body lift cause a bad ground. I was looking at it last night and the negative terminal is grounded to the body where the supports for the fender tie into the fire wall. I have a 1" body lift, could that be my drain?

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post #2 of 6 Old 10-20-2011, 06:19 PM
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I'm chasing down a battery drain myself right now, and haven't located it yet. I don't see how a body lift would be the problem, though. Your negative battery cable should go straight to the engine block, or to a starter mounting bolt. The body and frame then could be grounded from the block.

Check out Jeephammer's posts. He's got some great advice on grounding problems and fixes.
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post #3 of 6 Old 10-20-2011, 07:33 PM Thread Starter
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Well I am going to start by changing the negative cable to it's right location. Thanks for the tip on the thread. If I find anything I will post it.
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post #4 of 6 Old 10-20-2011, 07:42 PM
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I agree, Hammer has some great info, but here is what I think I know. A body lift should not cause a draw, it could cause certain electrically issues due to bad ground, I guess it is theoritically possible that a relay is staying open due to a bad groud, but that's far fetched. I agree the ground should go to the block and then healthy ground straps should ground the engine to the chassis and the body to the chassis.

When tracing a draw, I will remove the ground and put a test light in between the terminal of the cable and the lug on the battery, if there is a draw it will light up brightly, the harder the draw the brighter. It is not uncommon to have a very dim light due to stereo and memory and things of that nature. At this point I begin removing fuses until I locate the circuit that it is on and then trace it from there until I find the culprit. If the draw is not associated with a fuse then you have to start unplugging items that are not fused, maybe horn or headlights or things of that nature, you just to look around for items not listed on the fuse block. Aftermarket equipment is always suspect first (such as stereos), then the factory equipment.

Electrical gremlins can be a bear, but the good news is that it is constant, not to mention there is only about 5 wires in a Jeep (exageration but still not a lot). I am not overly familiar with a Jeep electrical system and their issues, but in general fan relays and open voltage regulator among others are common issues with older stuff.

Hope this helps good luck.

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post #5 of 6 Old 09-01-2016, 07:57 AM
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similar issue recently. Turned out to be defective voltage regulator.
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post #6 of 6 Old 09-01-2016, 02:04 PM
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My! We do like resurrecting old threads here! The original post was dated 10-21-2011 But I do understand not re-inventing the wheel.

BTW: Bad grounds do not cause battery drain when a vehicle is parked. A bad ground may cause a hot spot (high current through a point of high resistance, especially problematic for high demand loads like starter motors) and over-current conditions that can blow fuses and burn out devices and burn up wires, but battery drain when parked is caused by what is called "parasitic current". Some device has an internal short or is improperly wired into the system such that it draws current even when the ignition key is switched off and removed.

In the case of a bad voltage regulator the problem is less likely parasitic current and more likely low or no excitation current back to the alternator so the alternator can't charge the battery while the engine is running. Alternately there could be a parasitic current through the regulator when the engine is running causing too much excitation current to the alternator causing it to put out too much voltage thereby overcharging or "cooking" the battery. This situation usually manifests as very short battery life of a few months to only a few weeks.


The more I try to pursue the easy way out the more difficult it is to reach my goal.
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