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Thread: Ignition switch?

  1. #1
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    Ignition switch?

    Could a faulty ignition switch cause the battery to drain its charge? I'm trying to sort out why my SC is continually draining the battery and so far, that's the only thing that I can think of that might do that. Anyone else have an issue with this? I've had this SC for 4 years and this is the first time that it's done something screwy like this. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Could it be your bumper sensors?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feld View Post
    Could it be your bumper sensors?
    No. That would emit an annoying buzzing sound leading me quite quickly to the culprit. The switch is turned off nearly all the time anyway...so there's no power to the system then.

    I suspect that my ignition switch has been on the fritz lately anyway and am just wondering if this could be a sypmtom of it going south on me.

  4. #4
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    If everything else has been tried, then I would suggest that you charge the battery, remove the plastic pieces covering the steering column, unplug the ignition switch, wait however long it usually takes for the battery to discharge, and then check the condition of the battery.

  5. #5
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    I highly doubt an ignition switch would cause this, They have very large contacts that have almost no way to touch anything else unless the key is on. I would do the ole fuse box troubleshooting, but pulling fuses one by one until your drain quits, or use a test light or multimeter between the removed fuse leads and see if its drawing current. Start with the interior light circuit as its been the one to give me problems every time. then the stereo, Good luck.

  6. #6
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    Stereo and alternator have been known to cause battery drain. Glovebox light, trunk lamp, under hood light, vanity mirrors all good things to check.

  7. #7
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    Had a problem like that it turned out that something inside the alternator went bad.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by birds4us View Post
    Stereo and alternator have been known to cause battery drain. Glovebox light, trunk lamp, under hood light, vanity mirrors all good things to check.
    A few months ago my battery light came on...would that possibly indicate an alternator problem? Unfortunately, there's not much in the books about that...

    I lack the facilities, some tools and the physical means to properly trouble shoot this issue. I'm hoping I can get a pretty clear way or three to go before I just start throwing parts at it.

    One thing of note also, there is an occassion that the ignition switch doesn't function as when you turn the key, the keyway rotates more than the key does...this has led me to think ignition switch...but I'm really not too sure when it comes to the electrical stuff on the car.

  9. #9
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    The key part is different than the ignition switch itself. The outer part rotating does not usually cause a draw, unless the key in ignition chime is sounding, but it would go out when you close the door anyway. Easiest thing to check for is the lights being on.

  10. #10
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    No lights are on...The underhood, trunk lights have been removed (long before I purchased the car) and the dinger has also been removed for a significant time. I really haven't done anything to the car that would lead to this recently.

    A few months ago, I did get motion sensors installed on my bumper and ran into a starting issue then. We found out that the (+) cable connections was bad at the battery. We fixed that and it fixed the issue since then. Then I've had some medical issues and didn't drive it for over a month. When I went back out to drive it, I had to jump it. That was about 3 weeks ago. Since then I've had to jump it randomly. Sometimes it starts and sometimes it doesn't without a jump. It did it sitting for less than 2 hours after starting no problem a week ago. Since then I haven't driven it because I don't want to get stuck somewhere as I've still got some medical issues that prevent me from getting under the hood.

    I've thought my alternator might be going out. Can that be tested in the car, or does it have to be out?

  11. #11
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    It can be tested in the car, but you may also have a bad battery, which also can be tested in the car. That is where I would start. Also make sure that the battery cables are clean and tight.

  12. #12
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    The battery is about 4 years old and I didn't get a "top of the line" battery when I did purchase it, so I suspect that might also be a problem, but I think that there's another bigger problem that I need to sort out before spending more money on a new battery. I'll see if I can limp it to a parts store this week to have the alternator/battery tested. I do have a spare alternator, so if that's the issue, then it's not too hard to get fixed (and I'll have it tested at the same time). Hopefully that is it and it doesn't end up being too difficult to find. Sometimes these electrical issues can have you going in circles for months and then sometimes you never do find the problem!

    Thanks for your help so far.

  13. #13
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    Also, did you charge the battery with a charger after it was dead? Charging a dead battery with the alternator is asking a bit much of it.

  14. #14
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    on my 93 lx I had a similar problem right before I decided to sell it. At times everything would be fine, then all the sudden the battery gauge would show the battery draining very quickly while driving. The alternator was ok because I replaced it twice just to be certain. Battery was replaced as well to see if that would fix the problem.

    The guy I sold it to said it ended up being something with the ignition. He said depending on the position of the ignition, would determine if the battery would drain. He was talking about just a very small movement in the igntion cylinder would cause the connection to short.

    Hopefully this information should help ya out. The LX was an automatic of course also.

    chris
    Last edited by mywhite89; 11-14-2006 at 09:14 AM.

  15. #15
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    Sam I do have a tester for load testing the battery and it also does a system check to see if the alternator is charging correctly. Are you planning on coming up this way soon. Call me and let me know

    Ken

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