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Old 02-21-2012, 06:50 PM   #1
bilkyb
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Battery Drain Problem

I will try not to make this too long but include as much info as possible.

Stock 2002 Explorer V8 XLT, no aftermarket accessories, just over 100K miles.

I have a battery drain that is severe enough that the vehicle won't start after two days. The battery was replaced in the last 60 days and is holding a charge when disconnected from the vehicle for a couple of days.

When connected the voltage drops about 0.5 volts in 24 hours. (12.81 @ 0630 and then 12.28 @ 0540 the next day.)

Drain is 300-320mA after all the normal things shut off after 15 or 20 minutes, it starts at .450 to .440 amps (haven't really timed that out to see how long it actually takes).

I have pulled all the fuses in the engine compartment with the following results:

#15 - Memory (KAPWR) - dropped from .310 amps to .200 (110 mA)

#18 - 4x4(v-batt 1) - dropped from .310 amps to .230 (80 mA)

#29 - PJB - dropped from .430 amps to .200 (230 mA). I did this one before the drop from the battery saver stuff.

Under the dash had the following results:

#3 - Radio, Amplifier, Power Antenna, DVD - dropped from .320 amps to .300 (20 mA)

#20 - PATS, Driver Seat SW, Memory SW, Driver Seat Module, BSM, Sunload Sensor - dropped from .310 amps to .200 (110 mA)

Also pulled the relays on top of the interior fuse block. Did not remove the block so I couldn't get the one for the Flashers out but:

#5 - Battery saver - dropped from .440 amps to .310 amps 9 (130 mA), this seems to correspond to #29 from the engine compartment.

I did not pull any of the relays for the trailering stuff in the rear relay box, didn't want to pull the trim panel until I have to.

Alone none of these seem too crazy but not sure.

The one for the 4x4 does bother me because my 4x4 indications on the instrument cluster flash randomly. I pulled the shift motor out to see if the stop post gromet was gone and all seemed fine. It also seems to shift in and out of 4x4. Verified it will go to "high" by lifting entire rear axle off ground and engaging and the front wheels pull the vehicle.

I also am concerned that I have some of the chaffing of the wire harness that goes behind the oil filter drip tray. I am wondering if this is part of my battery drain. Next step is to get vehicle up on stands and try to move that bundle to check for fluctuations in the draw.

One other question, could an alternator cause this drain? It seems to charge fine. As long as I run the vehicle every day it is okay and the voltage at the battery when it is running is about 14.5 volts.

I seem to find that the general concensus to a "normal" drain should be no more than 50 mA. Your thoughts. Does anyone have a vehicle they could check?

Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance!!

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Old 03-21-2012, 10:36 PM   #2
tkd91
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alternator...As it stands right now. My 05 is sitting outside with no alternator. I had the same issues, got a new battery. Two months later, bam...Truck dead. The battery was recharged and is fine. The alternator went, had it tested at autozone. Hopeful I can finish installing my new alternator later today.
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Old 05-16-2012, 04:59 PM   #3
sparkleminnow
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Agreed. Alternator.. I had the same problem.
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Old 03-07-2014, 04:24 PM   #4
Donster299
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bilkyb View Post
I will try not to make this too long but include as much info as possible.

Stock 2002 Explorer V8 XLT, no aftermarket accessories, just over 100K miles.

I have a battery drain that is severe enough that the vehicle won't start after two days. The battery was replaced in the last 60 days and is holding a charge when disconnected from the vehicle for a couple of days.

When connected the voltage drops about 0.5 volts in 24 hours. (12.81 @ 0630 and then 12.28 @ 0540 the next day.)

Drain is 300-320mA after all the normal things shut off after 15 or 20 minutes, it starts at .450 to .440 amps (haven't really timed that out to see how long it actually takes).

I have pulled all the fuses in the engine compartment with the following results:

#15 - Memory (KAPWR) - dropped from .310 amps to .200 (110 mA)

#18 - 4x4(v-batt 1) - dropped from .310 amps to .230 (80 mA)

#29 - PJB - dropped from .430 amps to .200 (230 mA). I did this one before the drop from the battery saver stuff.

Under the dash had the following results:

#3 - Radio, Amplifier, Power Antenna, DVD - dropped from .320 amps to .300 (20 mA)

#20 - PATS, Driver Seat SW, Memory SW, Driver Seat Module, BSM, Sunload Sensor - dropped from .310 amps to .200 (110 mA)

Also pulled the relays on top of the interior fuse block. Did not remove the block so I couldn't get the one for the Flashers out but:

#5 - Battery saver - dropped from .440 amps to .310 amps 9 (130 mA), this seems to correspond to #29 from the engine compartment.

I did not pull any of the relays for the trailering stuff in the rear relay box, didn't want to pull the trim panel until I have to.

Alone none of these seem too crazy but not sure.

The one for the 4x4 does bother me because my 4x4 indications on the instrument cluster flash randomly. I pulled the shift motor out to see if the stop post gromet was gone and all seemed fine. It also seems to shift in and out of 4x4. Verified it will go to "high" by lifting entire rear axle off ground and engaging and the front wheels pull the vehicle.

I also am concerned that I have some of the chaffing of the wire harness that goes behind the oil filter drip tray. I am wondering if this is part of my battery drain. Next step is to get vehicle up on stands and try to move that bundle to check for fluctuations in the draw.

One other question, could an alternator cause this drain? It seems to charge fine. As long as I run the vehicle every day it is okay and the voltage at the battery when it is running is about 14.5 volts.

I seem to find that the general concensus to a "normal" drain should be no more than 50 mA. Your thoughts. Does anyone have a vehicle they could check?

Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance!!
What did you find out? I have the very same problem have in the shop now.
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Old 05-16-2017, 06:47 PM   #5
jnmik
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Explorer 2002, battery drain problem too

Explorer 2002, battery drain problem too

When I unplug the negative cable and run a test with my ampmeter, both "Daytime running lamps" and "high beam relay" ticks like crazy and the ampmeter is showing random values between ~55 and ~195 (values switching every seconds).

Do you know where I should start my investigation ?
I tried using the fuel pump relay (which seems to be working good) in the two others relay location and the problem persist. I believe this is the circuit ?

thx !
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Old 05-17-2017, 02:12 PM   #6
J_C
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnmik View Post
Explorer 2002, battery drain problem too

When I unplug the negative cable and run a test with my ampmeter, both "Daytime running lamps" and "high beam relay" ticks like crazy and the ampmeter is showing random values between ~55 and ~195 (values switching every seconds).

Do you know where I should start my investigation ?
I tried using the fuel pump relay (which seems to be working good) in the two others relay location and the problem persist. I believe this is the circuit ?

thx !
Returning power after a disconnect can energize relays, I don't see that as a problem in itself. There's probably a battery saver circuit that runs a timer loop and eventually returns things to a much lower power state.

I assume 55 and 195 are mA? That's quite normal until the battery saver timer, times out. Note that just doing something like opening a door will reset the timer to zero so to test this you'd want your window rolled down or hood already open and it sitting for (whatever time period, let's say probably an hour is enough but I don't know the exact time period for that model year).

Anyway, disconnecting the battery and reconnecting it resets the time period, so what you'll want to do is leave it connected, vehicle sitting with hood open for an hour, then have your ammeter probes on the negative (people usually use positive but negative will work instead) battery terminal, and the negative cable, then pull the cable off the battery, so that the circuit is not interrupted to reset the timer.

Once you have a reading from it in that state you can better determine if you have excessive current, at that point it should be tens of mA, probably under 50mA. If it is still higher than that, you either get a 2nd person or some clamps to hold the ammeter probes on the battery and cable, then start disconnecting things to see what stops the excess current draw.

Two prime candidates are the alternator (a leaky diode in it), so disconnect the battery to alternator cable. Since you are using a battery ground test, remember that the cable is hot and can't touch the chassis. Frankly I would just switch to using the ammeter on the battery positive instead, as that's easier.

2nd common candidate is the battery saver relay itself, which might be in a box, maybe closed so difficult to recognize, under the dash, accessed from the foot well area. It "might" be on the driver's side near the center. You'll probably want a flashlight. Often that same relay box has more than one of the same relay in it so you could swap that relay with another of the same.

If it's neither of those you can systematically pull fuses to see the change in current. I'd first try the more selective fuses in the passenger compartment box, then last the junction box under the hood.
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Old 05-18-2017, 09:07 PM   #7
jnmik
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Aye ! Awesome reply sir ! Thanks for this.

Let's say I find the "save relay" inside the car and unplug it, can I run the test without waiting a hour for the timer to reset ?
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Old 05-18-2017, 09:18 PM   #8
J_C
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^ As far as I know, yes you can, but this is something I did not test. Instead I would just swap one of the same model # adjacent relays in that box into that relay position. FWIW that relay only costs about $10 on Amazon.
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Old 06-15-2017, 08:57 PM   #9
Stormchaser
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I want to add what's going on with my 2002 Explorer. XLT V8

Same as above, my fully charged battery, 12.77 drains in a couple days all I get is a click.

I did the negative amp test and am getting a 220 ma draw.
After letting the meter stay connected for 2 hours, there were no changes to the reading.
I went under the dash and pulled every fuse, one at a time while observing the readout. There were (2) fuses that dropped the amps.
1st fuse was #17 (a 15 amp fuse which handles : Delayed acc. coil : Battery saver : Interior Lamps "front & rear" : Glove Compartment lamp.
This fuse dropped the amps to 50 ma.
I then reinserted the fuse.
2nd fuse was #20 ( a 5 amp fuse which handles : PATS (??? no idea what this is) : Driver seat switch : Memory switch : Driver seat module : BSM (??? no idea what this is) : Sunload sensor.
This fuse dropped the amps to 30 ma.
I then reinserted the fuse.

I want to add, after attaching the wires to the battery and the meter, the reading I get is an almost instant .20 - .22 amps. (or 200 ma) and this measurement doesn't change, ever. unless I open a door, they jump to numbers in the hundreds. When I close the door, within only a couple seconds after the lights go out, around 45 secs later, they fall back to .20 amps.

Any ideas?

I want to add, lights go out after 45 seconds. Glove box light shuts off.

Now, the power seats can be moved even when there is no key in.

One more thing. This just happened a few weeks ago around the same time as the battery drain. My AC developed a leak. It works fine when full of freon, 40 degrees. This wouldn't have anything to do with the battery drain, would it?
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Old 06-17-2017, 06:36 PM   #10
J_C
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^ PATS is the passive anti-theft system.

The 220mA draw is normal until the battery saver circuit kicks the battery saver relay off. What I would do is repeat your test but swap the other relay that's the same format as the battery saver relay, into the battery saver relay socket. Sometimes that relay goes bad. It's about $11 on Amazon, maybe closer to $20 at most local auto parts stores.

If that doesn't indicate the relay is bad (same 220mA after 45 minutes), start measuring across fuse compartment contacts to narrow down the subcircuit.

No, an AC leak won't do anything to cause battery drain.

Yes you need to keep the doors closed, not cause any power draw for that 45 minutes waiting for battery saver circuit timer to tick down or else it'll reset and be another 45 minutes.
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