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Old 03-23-2006, 05:10 PM   #1
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Default Battery!!! Geez...

So just when the weather is starting to get nice, my battery decides to die... Deader than a doornail. Not even enough electricity to actuate the power locks!

Jump start it and let it sit with my truck and the alt charging up the battery for 10 minutes. Then drive it around for quite awhile to see if it'll hold.

Drive to a friends garage and he tests the charging system. 103amps are flowin' from the alternator to the battery. Car starts fine at the shop, but battery dips to 8volts while cranking.

Drive the car home. Starts repeatedly in the garage without even a hint of the starter working hard. Now 2 hours later, still starts just fine. Disconnect the positive terminal and put my multimeter (in 20Amp mode) between the battery and the cable. After a bit, 0.01amps showing on the meter... Probably right, not enough to completely deaden the battery in just 5 days right? I had it sitting through the course of the winter (past 2.5 months) without so much as a problem. Drove it 3 hours on a trip this past Saturday and got home without incident...

Well, my question is this. Is it just time to replace the battery? Do they just fail like this, then come back to life again? Is 0.01amps enough to drain a battery over the course of not really even 5 days? Dealer wants $125 for the thing... And no other alternatives exist according to the parts stores around me...

What do ya think? Hope it wasn't too long of a read. :(
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Old 03-23-2006, 05:37 PM   #2
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What brand of battery & how old is it?
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Old 03-23-2006, 05:39 PM   #3
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if it is original it is about time, i had to replce mine last winter.. .01A parasitic draw is nothing to be concerned about
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Old 03-23-2006, 05:41 PM   #4
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Cool.

Yeah... It'* the factory battery. Brand new when my '01 rolled off the assembly line. Doesn't really owe me anything, but just was weird that it resurrected itself so quickly. I don't need to drive it right now so I'll just keep an eye on it for a bit...

I should mention that I load test my batteries every winter and this passed with flying colors in December. I'll have to do it again once it has regained its charge.

Now the decision, when it needs to be made, is should I go with another AC Delco or go with Advanced Autos Autocraft Titanium battery w/ 3yr free replacement / 7yr prorated warranty?
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Old 03-23-2006, 05:45 PM   #5
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Yeah, I'd say replace with new. Like Toast mentioned, .01 amp is nothing. the PCM & Radio take a little power from the battery while car is shut down.
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Old 03-23-2006, 05:48 PM   #6
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the GM battery is quite expensive if i do recall correctly, in the neighborhood of $170.. i shopped around and got a 6/72 batter for $65
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Old 03-23-2006, 05:48 PM   #7
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I'm going to watch it to make sure it wasn't something stupid like a dome light being left on. I checked it already, but wasn't really paying attention when I first was trying to get it started.

May throw my dad'* charger on it on trickle overnight and load test it tomorrow. See what she reads then.

Thanks for the replies. I wasn't sure what the PCM/radio used and since you can't really switch amperage ranges mid test on my multimeter, I couldn't see the exact draw... Just 0.01amps... Glad to hear that isn't a problem.

Thanks again!

*EDIT* - here are my options on the battery...

Dealership AC Delco w/ unknown warranty - $125 w/ core
Advanced Auto Autocraft Titanium 3yr free replacement / 7yr prorated warranty - $125 w/ core...

Given the Delco'* reputation for the positive post falling off (happened on my Bravada), I think I'll go with the Autocraft. That is unless someone has horror stories about those batteries as well... Let me know
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Old 03-23-2006, 07:10 PM   #8
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I like the Delco batteries a lot, have seen them last 7+ years. I'd recommend changing yours since you've had a warning & there never seems to be a good time for your car not to start. :P Some of us also believe that weak batteries are hard on the alternator.
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Old 03-23-2006, 07:43 PM   #9
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Well, my own personal experience with my Bravada'* AC Delco battery, coupled with the experience of a few members here and MANY members on the Blazer forum that I am a part of, tells me to stay away from AC Delco batteries.

Lately, there has been a rash of AC Delco batteries with positive terminal corrosion INSIDE the battery. INSIDE!!! Where nothing should be corroding! My own AC Delco battery in my Bravada suffered from this fate. The terminal still looked like new once I removed it from the battery cable with a set of vice grips...

Now I must say that my original 5+ year old AC Delco has served its life. There doesn't appear to be any problems with the terminal. It did give me a warning. Nothing that left me stranded anywhere or even without a ride... I drive my Bravada in the winter so my Bonneville has just sat since early December.

I pushed back my inspection so I have some time to play around with it before I have to drive it to complete the drive cycle before the NYS inspection. I'm going to let it sit until Sunday. Then see if it starts. If it does, I'm going to load test the battery and see what happens. Load test bad, new battery here I come. Load test good... Well. Maybe I'll just let it be for awhile. Live life on the edge, just not take it anywhere but work and back. I always carry jumper cables so it shouldn't be too big of a deal to just get a jump.
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Old 03-23-2006, 08:11 PM   #10
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I'd replace it for no other reason than some people have had cracks develop in the battery which let the acid leak out. Left long enough, you wind up with a swiss cheese floor.
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