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Dead battery lessons learned

Discussion in 'Stock 2011 - 2019 Ford Explorer Discussion' started by Holligl, June 28, 2015.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. Napalm

    Napalm Active Member

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    My GM product has a display mode that brings up various systems and status - one if battery voltage and battery charge as %.

    I haven't looked hard enough but I figure the explorer has something akin to that somewhere.
     
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  3. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    With my previous 2011 Limited and current 2014 MKT I get a message on the MFT screen indicating a low battery condition. See thread;
    http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=397375&highlight=battery+saver

    Peter
     
  4. Holligl

    Holligl Active Member

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    Please explain the 4 step check. The car just sat for 8 days with no activity, and started like new yesterday.
     
  5. Holligl

    Holligl Active Member

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    We must have gotten the same OEM Batch as the original went early. Got ~3 1/2 years on the Ford replacement. This is the 3rd battery, only 6 months on it. With the first two batteries mine seemed to issue Terrain Management warnings if the battery is weak, along with weak starts.
     
  6. Napalm

    Napalm Active Member

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    do you have a multi-meter? if not go to an autozone, oriely etc and let them put the tester on it for free.

    but if you are curious and have a meter....

    1) with meter set to DC volts - check battery at terminals (the actual posts of the battery) with the car off, lights off etc. should get 11-12 +/- 0.5 a reading of 10.0 isn't the end of the world but I'd like to see 10.5

    2) meter set to DC volts - check battery cables in the cable (IE if you can see it put the probe on the copper of the cable in the end of the clamps) - same check as above - should be 11-12 volts +/- 0.5. Specifically - should get the same reading as in test 1. if you don't the cables aren't on tight enough or there is dirt - corrosion etc between the cable and the battery - normally this is a case where you need to take off the cables - clean the posts, clean the cables - and test again.

    3) meter set to DC volts - car on - A/C on - headlights on (why - load in the system) - let run for some 30 seconds or so - meter to battery cable or posts

    should read 12.5-14.3 volts. why the range - new cars today have variable field alternators that vary output amps and voltage based on car need, available engine power - and battery condition as a function of internal resistance. IE the computer is balancing out the electrical loading based on factors to reduce fuel consumption if it's not needed.

    so don't freak out if your 09 or newer car is only reading 12.5 volts at the battery. as opposed to rule of thumb it must be at least 13.5 at idle . . . . . . .


    it's fine if it's 12.5+. it's good enough - with ac on, headlamps etc - I honestly expect it to be north of 13 - but if the battery condition is good - computer might back off.


    4) meter on AC volts - low range (0-1- if that's an option for you). car on, ac on, headlamps etc - meter to battery cables. reading: 0-0.6 Vac. ideally it should read 0 - however nothing is perfect. any more than 1 Vac - indicates the rectifier pack is going bad or gone bad. car alternators actually produce AC current - like in your house - and there's an internal rectifier circuit that corrects it to DC - if you get AC leakage it will gradually kill a battery. and it's not good for the other electronic circuits but they are mostly protected.


    this set of tests is similar to what those test machines do - without performing a deep cycle test on your battery
     
  7. Holligl

    Holligl Active Member

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    I did have a meter:
    1) 12.45
    2) 12.44
    3) 13.77
    4) My meter had a 200V and 500V ~ setting.
    On 200 the meter showed 29.6, well outside your range. I will try to get it in for a better diagnosis.
     
  8. Holligl

    Holligl Active Member

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    Cleaning the car today I decided to try this. Found the small door under the rubber liner in the front storage compartment. Following the instructions, I could not get anything to move. Gave up rather than breaking something. It did not look anything like the sketch in the manual. Here is a picture:

    http://www.4shared.com/download/dzOrAgDrce/20150707_171510.jpg?lgfp=3000

    Has anyone actually done this?
     
  9. Napalm

    Napalm Active Member

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    those first bits sound spot on.

    that 4th one - check the book on your meter, it might be a misnomer. I don't know what your meter shows - but mine has 4 spots.

    4,40,400,4000. it's a ranging thing - some other meters I've used have 10,100


    but I would check that again before spending money on having it checked - other than the oriely, autozone testers. hell some decent tire stores will do a deep test for fee also.

    anyway - good luck. I'll go on a limb and say it's likely your charging circuit is just fine.

    (if you were getting 29Vac in the system sweep it would be throwing all sorts of issues)
     
  10. KelvinC

    KelvinC New Member

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    Really?

    DOH..... :(

    I'm - let's just say older - and I Google a lot. But the Owners Manual is a fairly important document to keep handy for such emergencies. Just sayin'.
     
  11. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    I find that finding things in the Owner's Guide is much easier in the downloaded PDF Guide on my computer. I have all 6 model years on my computer.

    Peter
     
  12. dco43054

    dco43054 Well-Known Member

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    And you can find the owner's manual via Google, and then read it online. :D
     
  13. Halwg

    Halwg Active Member

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    We always called it..."Read the effin' book!"
     
  14. PIUtility

    PIUtility Guest

    If it makes you guys feel any better, my 750 CCA battery took a crap on me last week, not quite at the 3 year mark


    Ironically, it stranded me at the local precinct/court house/remote sheriff's patrol office. That sparked some interesting conversation from the deputies that bought out a jump pack and saw the PIU with my shepherd and malinois in the back
     
  15. wifes2011xlt

    wifes2011xlt Active Member

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    Not if you're stranded out in the middle of no where with sketchy phone service or a dead phone battery.

    Owner's manuals are your friend.
     
  16. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    I don't think he meant that the online PDF version is the only Owner's Guide to use. Just another avenue to access it. My Owner's Manual is in the glove box and the PDF version is on my computer.

    Peter
     
  17. wifes2011xlt

    wifes2011xlt Active Member

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    Yup but my point was when technology fails you, that booklet in the glove compartment might just get you out of the jam you're in.
     
  18. dco43054

    dco43054 Well-Known Member

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    It's always there to start a fire to keep you warm and ward off the nasty creatures of the night!:D


    And all joking aside, it is possible to download the PDF, which then becomes searchable. I find it very easy to find info that way.
     
  19. KelvinC

    KelvinC New Member

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    Agree with Wifes2011XLT

    I love the .pdf file for all reasons mentioned. BUT - when you're in a jam the paper copy is usually what's available.
     
  20. wifes2011xlt

    wifes2011xlt Active Member

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    Then when you get home, download the pdf, print it out, stick it in your glove compartment so you can refer to it when you can't get to a computer/phone/internet...or just have it handy as kindling for the next time you need to start a fire...:D:D:D
     
  21. Napalm

    Napalm Active Member

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    so back to the battery thing.

    forgot 2 pieces. when you replaced did you replace with another sealed up battery - did you put the vent tube on?

    and if you check that AC voltage step again - before the test touch your 2 lead to each other and let the meter stabilize to 0.0 Most meters do this. Then do the test.

    If your battery isn't sealed - check the water level. water is important.
     

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