LJ - Help identify mystery red wire connecting to battery and going through firewall - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 15 Old 04-01-2017, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
Pentara
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LJ - Help identify mystery red wire connecting to battery and going through firewall

I did some work today on my LJ and while under the hood I saw that my battery was very corroded. Grabbed a metal brush and vacuum to clean the contact points a bit and before I even started I saw a small single red wire that wasn't connected to anything and who's tip was corroded as heck.

I believe it disconnected from the battery, the shape and length of the wire make that the only logical termination point, plus the corrosion on the wire tip and battery (I don't have corrosion anywhere else under the hood).

I traced the wire and it runs solo from the battery to the drivers side of the engine bay before connecting to what looks like a plug going through the firewall. But, I can't see anything wrong inside when I start the Jeep. No errors, all lights work, ... Can anyone help me identify it? Thanks in advance.

I don't have a photo of my engine bay, but the below 2 photos help show where it is and goes.
PIC 1 - See the red wire, same as mine.
PIC 2 - You can trace the red wire here too, from left to right. On the right side, just below that vertical black cylinder is where the plug going through the firewall is and where the red wire terminates.





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post #2 of 15 Old 04-01-2017, 07:29 PM
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The world may never know


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post #3 of 15 Old 04-01-2017, 07:39 PM
Jerry Bransford
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Probably for a CB radio that was removed before the previous owner sold it.
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post #4 of 15 Old 04-01-2017, 08:22 PM
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Main power wire for the Flux Capacitor, they are notorious for traveling to their destination without the host vehicle when improperly grounded. When this happens feedback from the capacitor shorts out the fusible link at the battery.
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post #5 of 15 Old 04-01-2017, 08:48 PM
2jhanna
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The wire in those two photos you posted not only look like your jeep, but 100s of others because that is a very convenient route to run wires that go into the cab for any numbers of reasons.

CB radios, aux amps, extra lighting, air compressor, etc.

Look under the dash and see where your wire comes in and where it goes.

I am multi-talented, I can talk and piss you off at the same time.

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post #6 of 15 Old 04-02-2017, 09:45 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by 2jhanna View Post
The wire in those two photos you posted not only look like your jeep, but 100s of others because that is a very convenient route to run wires that go into the cab for any numbers of reasons. CB radios, aux amps, extra lighting, air compressor, etc.
Thank you all for your help and humour. 2jhanna, your comment helped me nail it down. As soon as you said this is a common accessory / addon wiring route, I checked my windshield mounted trail lights which is the only powered add-on connected to the cab that I have and sure enough they're dead. They worked last week so I'm sure this loose wire is the culprit.

I'll have to figure out a better way to attach it to the battery since I assume it'll keep oxidizing and the dinky little tab it came with only lasted 3 years.
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post #7 of 15 Old 04-02-2017, 09:50 AM
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I hope that was an April fools joke


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post #8 of 15 Old 04-02-2017, 10:09 AM Thread Starter
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I hope that was an April fools joke
No, dead serious. I didn't install them myself and when it was done 3 years ago I thought the mechanic told me he connected them to power inside the dash. My original thinking was that this was a stock wire, since it went through the firewall very nicely through it's own plug. When I did a check of all the electricals inside I was checking all stock lights/clusters. It never occurred to me to flip the trail light switch.
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post #9 of 15 Old 04-02-2017, 11:27 AM
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Just cut an inch or so of the wire and crimp on a new ring terminal of the proper size.

Then do a better job of keeping the battery terminals clean.
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post #10 of 15 Old 04-02-2017, 04:15 PM Thread Starter
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Just cut an inch or so of the wire and crimp on a new ring terminal of the proper size. Then do a better job of keeping the battery terminals clean.
Yup. Just poured 1L of water infused with baking soda onto the battery until everything stopped fizzling. 90% of the corrosion is gone. Then rinsed all the baking soda residue away, dried the battery and battery mount. While doing this a second wire connecting a battery charging plug came apart off of the same terminal.

Bought a crimper tool and terminal rings, crimped, heat shrunk and properly shielded the wires. Re-attached to battery and then covered terminal in grease to help reduce oxidation. Trail lights working great again, will keep a better eye on the battery going forward and keep oxidation to a minimum.

Thanks again!
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post #11 of 15 Old 04-02-2017, 04:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pentara View Post
Yup. Just poured 1L of water infused with baking soda onto the battery until everything stopped fizzling. 90% of the corrosion is gone. Then rinsed all the baking soda residue away, dried the battery and battery mount. While doing this a second wire connecting a battery charging plug came apart off of the same terminal.

Bought a crimper tool and terminal rings, crimped, heat shrunk and properly shielded the wires. Re-attached to battery and then covered terminal in grease to help reduce oxidation. Trail lights working great again, will keep a better eye on the battery going forward and keep oxidation to a minimum.

Thanks again!
A sealed battery will stop that corrosion on the battery terminals. Sulphuric fumes leak out of conventional batteries which is the root cause of battery terminal corrosion. I haven't had any battery corrosion since going to AGM and sealed/maintenance free batteries.
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post #12 of 15 Old 04-02-2017, 06:32 PM
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Optimas are definitely the way to go. I've had such good experience with all of mine I won't buy another conventional battery again. even under huge power draws with the vehicle off they hold there charges well.


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post #13 of 15 Old 04-02-2017, 09:39 PM
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Optimas are definitely the way to go.
Optima's are not what they used to be. Typical life span is about 1 year.
AGM batteries are also vented...
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post #14 of 15 Old 04-03-2017, 02:32 AM
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You might want to check that those trail lights are fused at the battery as well...

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post #15 of 15 Old 04-03-2017, 05:47 AM
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You might want to check that those trail lights are fused at the battery as well...
Good point.

I am multi-talented, I can talk and piss you off at the same time.

jhanna
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