Battery drain

Tiny
PILOTBILL
  • MEMBER
  • 2009 KIA RIO
  • 1.6L
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 82,378 MILES
Hello 2CarPros,

I have an electrical drain somewhere. If the car is not driven at least every other day, the battery will not start the car. I have had the battery checked and the Alternator checked. They both checked okay. If the car sits more than three (3) or Four (4) days, the battery will be so low, the car will not start. I can hook up my battery charger and let it charge for about hour or two, then the car will start right up. Is there a step-by-step guide that might show or tell me how I might be able to find what is causing battery drain? Thank you all for any help you might be able to help me.
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Tuesday, May 31st, 2022 AT 11:12 AM

7 Replies

Tiny
SQM
  • EXPERT
Hello,

It sounds like your vehicle has excessive parasitic draw or current drain on the battery.
All electrical circuits will have some parasitic draw that is normal, but it can become excessive due to any number of issues. Like a faulty switch or a glove box light staying on etc.
To find out what is creating the draw you will have to use a multimeter to check the current drain on the battery as you will have to remove different fuses to isolate the issue.

Here is a helpful video that shows exactly what to do:

https://youtu.be/z5F7WpgjaRs

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/car-battery-dead-overnight

A typical acceptable parasitic draw is about 30 milliamp.

Please let me know of any questions.
Thank you.
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Tuesday, May 31st, 2022 AT 12:53 PM
Tiny
KEN L
  • ADMIN
This can be caused by a glove box light staying on, a CD stuck in the player, or a trunk ought staying on. This guide can help you pinpoint the cause of the battery drain. Also, I think we should load test the battery because if the battery is more than 3 years old it may test good at the initial testing but not hold up over a few days. The load test is easy because it doesn't take any tools or equipment.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/car-battery-dead-overnight

and

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/car-battery-load-test

Please run down these guides and report back.
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Tuesday, May 31st, 2022 AT 1:09 PM
Tiny
PILOTBILL
  • MEMBER
Hello Ken,

I checked what you told me to. Everything checked out okay, but I did find something. The evening that I was running the test, my daughter stopped by our house on her way home from work. She asked me what I was doing, so I told her about the battery running down every other day or two. She told me that last month while she was driving our car that she noticed that there was a blinking light going on and off up under the dash. I checked this out and sure enough, she was right. Whoever owned the car before us had mounted some kind of wiring attachment. On one end of the unit (#1white) wire was attach to a hot wire under the dash. On the other end of the unit (#2 black) wire was attach a black wire that came from the OBD unit. The (#3 red) wire was also attack to another wire coming from the OBD unit, but I couldn t see what color the wire was, to many other wires. Also on this wiring attachment, there is a green light and a red light. The green light is what is blinking. I am sent you a hand drawn picture of the unit, plus some photos, the photos isn t that good, but maybe they can give you some kind of idea.
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Friday, June 3rd, 2022 AT 11:34 AM
Tiny
KEN L
  • ADMIN
Yes, it is hard to tell if the images are too fuzzy. Try to see which wires have power and disconnect them to see if the battery still runs down. This guide to help you tell if power is present:

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-use-a-test-light-circuit-tester

Please run down this guide and report back.
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Friday, June 3rd, 2022 AT 6:42 PM
Tiny
PILOTBILL
  • MEMBER
Hello Ken,

I wanted to let you know how things turned out. First off, that blinking wiring attachment that I told you about, it is called Modbuz, finance company's put things like that on vehicles when financed, if you get so/many days behind on payments the vehicle won t start until you make a payment. The model is a completely self-contained device, requiring constant power and ground to operate. Within the case are two antennas for both GPS data and GSM/GPRS communication. This device is installed in a concealed location under the dash. I have enclosed a photo below, but it is not a good picture, but it will give you an idea what one looks like. I went ahead and removed the device. We made our last payment on the kia on June 15, it has taken us five (5) years to pay for the car. No more car buying for us for a long time we hope. Now onto the other problem, the battery test failed. The batter is almost four (4) years old. We plan on replacing the battery when we get our ss checks the end of this month. Thank you again for all your help.
Sincerely,
Bill H.
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Monday, June 6th, 2022 AT 12:58 PM
Tiny
KEN L
  • ADMIN
Thanks for the info, that's a new one for me. Glad you could get it fixed, that kind of problem can be tough. Please use 2CarPros anytime we are here to help.
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Monday, June 6th, 2022 AT 1:21 PM
Tiny
PILOTBILL
  • MEMBER
You are welcome, you all have helped me out over a number of years. This is the least I could do for you all. I hope the information will help someone else. Thank you again. You be safe and God Bless You. Sincerely, Bill H.
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Monday, June 6th, 2022 AT 6:00 PM

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