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Old 02-21-2014, 12:13 PM   #1
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battery keeps dying.

So my battery keeps dying. I had the first one tested and it was bad so I replaced it. A few days later the new one died and could not start my jeep. I hooked up jumper cables and it started up just fine. So I had the new battery tested and the@ alternator tested. Both tested good. What could be causing my battery to keep dying?

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Old 02-21-2014, 12:34 PM   #2
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There is draw somewhere if it keeps dying for no reason. Disconnect the positive terminal. Take a multi-meter and put it between the positive terminal of the battery and the battery cable, and see if you get any kind of reading. If there is, then you have to troubleshoot to see what is drawing power when the motor isn't running.

The easiest way to do that is to leave the multi-meter hooked up as before, and pull 1 fuse at a time to see if the reading changes. Trying to find the circuit that is drawing power.

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Old 02-21-2014, 12:44 PM   #3
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It's not actually dying while it is off. It happens when I am driving for a while. If I turn the engine off. Then it won't start back up. But it can sit for days with a good battery and start just fine.
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:18 PM   #4
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It's likely that it's the alternator. Even though it tested ok, a lot of times that will be the case. I have talked to several YJ owners on here with the same problem and had a good tested alternator actually be bad.

Do this test. Start your jeep, then remove the ground battery terminal. If the engine dies out, it's the alternator. Are you getting any codes from the ECM by the way? The CEL doesn't have to be illuminated for it to have a code stored in the memory. Code 16 and 47 would be alternator related. Check for these codes before the test. I also suggest getting the alternator re-checked by another mechanic. A lot of times the "mechanics" at AutoZone and such don't actually run the test correctly.

There's no reason the battery should lose it's charge with the engine running other than the charging system. You can also test the voltage coming out of the alternator into the battery if you have a digital multimeter.
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:33 PM   #5
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Definitely sounds like an alternator. Vehicles run on the alternator while the engine is on so if you are losing power while driving that is it. Also take a multimeter while the engine is running and test positive to negative terminals. If you have less than 14V DC your alternator is not charging the battery.
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Old 02-21-2014, 11:02 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by YJ Sean View Post
Definitely sounds like an alternator. Vehicles run on the alternator while the engine is on so if you are losing power while driving that is it. Also take a multimeter while the engine is running and test positive to negative terminals. If you have less than 14V DC your alternator is not charging the battery.
^This.
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Old 02-21-2014, 11:06 PM   #7
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I had the same thing happen on my F250. Replaced the batteries as the alt. tested good. Ended up being a bad alt after buying 2 new batteries.
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Old 02-22-2014, 06:48 AM   #8
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[QUOTE=Defcon 1;8475289]It's likely that it's the alternator. Even though it tested ok, a lot of times that will be the case. I have talked to several YJ owners on here with the same problem and had a good tested alternator actually be bad.

Do this test. Start your jeep, then remove the ground battery terminal. If the engine dies out, it's the alternator. Are you getting any codes from the ECM by the way? The CEL doesn't have to be illuminated for it to have a code stored in the memory. Code 16 and 47 would be alternator related. Check for these codes before the test. I also suggest getting the alternator re-checked by another mechanic. A lot of times the "mechanics" at AutoZone and such don't actually run the test correctl.

DO NOT DISCONNECT THE BATTERY ON ANY COMPUTER CONTROLLED VEHICLE WHILE IT IS RUNNING.
This can cause a voltage spike to the computer causing damage. I know you will say you have done it with no problems if so you are just plain lucky. I have been working on cars for a living since before had computers and I have seen computers ruined because of that.Use a volt meter to check voltage when the engine is running 13.8-14.2 is perfect.
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Old 02-22-2014, 08:02 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the advice everyone. I well try all these things and hopefully figure this out. I well be sure not to disconnect the battery while it is running as well. Thank you all.
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Old 02-22-2014, 03:32 PM   #10
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Ok so I tested everything today and the village on the battery while running was 14.56. Is that to high? I did change the battery terminal connectors and cleaned the plug to the alternator. So it looks like my alternator is good.
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Old 02-22-2014, 05:12 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by NoReturn86 View Post
Ok so I tested everything today and the village on the battery while running was 14.56. Is that to high? I did change the battery terminal connectors and cleaned the plug to the alternator. So it looks like my alternator is good.
It definitely could have been a bad connection. Only time will tell.
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Old 02-23-2014, 10:01 PM   #12
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It seems to be holding up so far.
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Old 02-23-2014, 10:23 PM   #13
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WHat I do at work trying to chase down a battery drain.

Buy an Emergency Buzzer off a School Bus (they like $5 on Ebay)

Wire it between the ground wire and the Negative Battery Terminal.
It will buzz Loud.
Pull fuses until it lowers in pitch or disappears.
Now you found the MUCH more specific Area

I do this all the time at work. Hook it up and pull fuses one at a time. Found out my Rear Hatch motor on my Camaro was bad and draining my battery at night (kept engaged).

If something is draining it will go BUUUUZZZZZ. when you find the right one it will either get REALLY quiet or stop buzzing completely. Saves from hooking up a Voltmeter and running back and forth
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Old 02-24-2014, 01:03 AM   #14
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Yeah, but his battery is draining while the jeep is running. It's gotta be the alternator.
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Old 02-24-2014, 01:31 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Hawaii5O View Post
Yeah, but his battery is draining while the jeep is running. It's gotta be the alternator.
LOL...On vacation and tired. Missed that part

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