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Electrical/charging problem problem

This is a discussion on Electrical/charging problem problem within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; I am having a weird electrical prob on my 1999 Camaro Z28 Sometime my alternator does not charge. My battery ...

  1. #1
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    1999 Z28

    Electrical/charging problem problem

    I am having a weird electrical prob on my 1999 Camaro Z28

    Sometime my alternator does not charge.
    My battery drains after a few days of sitting.
    when I turn the car on the gauges dont work for 30 seconds and the odometer resets. This usually happens when it is cold.

    I have already replaced the alternator and battery.
    The new alternator seems to help somewhat the car charges better but not 100%

    Could this be a bad body computer which controls my odometer and guages?

  2. #2
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    00 LS1, WS6, V8 Gremlin
    96 & 98 GTPs, 64 'Cuda

    Find out what's draining your battery first.

    Here's an easy way to figure it out.

    Get or rig up some sort of 12V test light. You can usually buy them for $1 at a discount tool place or use any 12 volt bulb that you can atach wires to.

    Get a couple of big clip leads from Radio Shack.

    Remove your + battery cable and hook the light between the + battery terminal and the + battery cable. If anything's drawing power the light will come on.

    There are normal battery drains such as the clock in your radio and a bit from the various computers but it shouldn't light up very brightly.

    Next, start removing fuses one at a time, if the light dims quite a bit after removing one that shouldn't be drawing power (example - brake lights) you've found the drain.

    Also - don't rule out the new alternator. Try disconnecting it as it shouldn't draw anything by itself.

  3. #3
    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    06 duramax

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Crowe View Post
    Find out what's draining your battery first.

    Here's an easy way to figure it out.

    Get or rig up some sort of 12V test light. You can usually buy them for $1 at a discount tool place or use any 12 volt bulb that you can atach wires to.

    Get a couple of big clip leads from Radio Shack.

    Remove your + battery cable and hook the light between the + battery terminal and the + battery cable. If anything's drawing power the light will come on.

    There are normal battery drains such as the clock in your radio and a bit from the various computers but it shouldn't light up very brightly.

    Next, start removing fuses one at a time, if the light dims quite a bit after removing one that shouldn't be drawing power (example - brake lights) you've found the drain.

    Also - don't rule out the new alternator. Try disconnecting it as it shouldn't draw anything by itself.
    I've never heard of that one before but will definitely keep it in mind. Good post.

  4. #4
    Single Malt rbob93's Avatar
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    And make sure you know your radio code before disconnecting the battery if you have the theftlock set

  5. #5
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    00 LS1, WS6, V8 Gremlin
    96 & 98 GTPs, 64 'Cuda

    Electrical problems beyond the obvious tend to send any tech up the wall.

    There are usually simple solutions but tracing down an intermittent short can be difficult if you don't have a $3000 piece of test equipment that will localize it to inches.

    We're open to challenges, hit us with your worst and we'll try to work you through it.

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