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    Thread: Parasitic Battery Drain

    1. Member Pottery_Pal's Avatar
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      08-25-2009 10:27 PM #1
      Ok. I have been reading the forums and gaining a wealth of information. I purchased this '90 Corrado and I have been working through a few small issues with the car.

      One issue is the all too common battery drain. I followed the advice of several threads and began the task of connecting an ammeter in-series off the negative terminal.

      An to my surprise I was drawing ~95mA with everything off. So, I proceeded to enlist the help of my son while I pulled the fuses one at a time until I removed a 20AMP Fuse located next to Relay #90. The current draw immediately dropped to ~12mA. I then proceeded to insert then remove the fuse and could hear a clicking sound. I couldn't tell where it was coming from in the short time I fiddled with it. But it is clear, something is pulling a small load.

      When I referenced the Bentley Fuse Panel Diagram I could not determine what this 20AMP Fuse is operating.


      Anyone got any ideas. This is the bulk of my drain issue. Once I fix it I can move on to the next lil project


      Thanks in advance.



      Modified by Pottery_Pal at 7:30 PM 8-25-2009


      Modified by Pottery_Pal at 6:14 AM 8-26-2009


    2. Member Prof315's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 07:09 AM #2
      The auto seatbelt retractors are infamous for causing a drain...
      The Professor
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    3. Member Pottery_Pal's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 09:10 AM #3
      Is that what that yellow fuse powers? Or are you just making a blanket statement about a common battery drain issue.

      I just want to be certain I understand your comments.


    4. Member YellowZonker's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 04:31 PM #4
      Everyone knows that if there is a very weird problem that shouldn't be happening, that would be in my car.
      I disconnected the seatbelt crap, pulled the fuse, pulled the bulb in the rear hatch, and the glove compartment, and I still have a draw somewhere. After about 6 months of fiddling with the damn thing I went to Harbor Freight and got a kill switch, for 2 reasons. Where I work they are notorious for car break-ins, even though we have a few kids patrol the lot at night, and 2 because I got tired of chasing power drawing ghosts.

      I put the kill switch on the negative side and ran one bypass wire so that the clock will still have power. That way I know if I still have some sort of draw the instrument cluster needs replacing, and I still have a clock. Everything else, why would you need power to it? The windows are already up, and the doors are already locked by the time you kill the power.
      I got the switch at Harbor Freight for about $6


    5. Member Pottery_Pal's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 04:40 PM #5
      I'll take that advice. If I can get this drain thing under control I will do just as you suggested.



    6. Member Pottery_Pal's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 04:50 PM #6
      Please send me a pic of your setup. I would like to see were you located it.


    7. 08-26-2009 05:18 PM #7
      I never thought of it before, but there's a TSB on some wires rubbing against the chassis causing a short, in fact a recall.... maybe the two are connected

    8. Member Pottery_Pal's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 05:24 PM #8
      Quote, originally posted by Freerevving »
      I never thought of it before, but there's a TSB on some wires rubbing against the chassis causing a short, in fact a recall.... maybe the two are connected


      Dumb question: What is a TSB?


    9. Member NoCYet's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 05:45 PM #9
      You could always pull that 20a fuse, and then try out everything to see what stopped working.
      I do not understand why some coupes make the grade and others do not. Everyone knows, for instance, that the Corrado was as tasty as an East End prize fighter with the looks of a Benetti super-yacht. The four-cylinder was good, but the VR6 was about as close as you could get to Ferraridom without buying a Ferrari. And what happened? You all went to the pub instead. -Jeremy Clarkson-

    10. 08-26-2009 05:55 PM #10
      Quote, originally posted by Pottery_Pal »


      Dumb question: What is a TSB?

      Technical Service Bulletin


    11. Member FlyersFn32's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 09:40 PM #11
      power windows maybe?

    12. Member Pottery_Pal's Avatar
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      08-26-2009 09:45 PM #12
      Quote, originally posted by NoCYet »
      You could always pull that 20a fuse, and then try out everything to see what stopped working.

      I have pulled the fuse and I have connected a battery charger to the car. It will take ~18 hours to fully charge.

      Once the battery is fully charged I am going to fire it up and see what doesn't work just to be certain. I believe it's the power windows.

      After that I am going to install this cool product I just purchased call the PriorityStart. This will help me from killing the battery with the parasitic drain issues while I continue to troubleshoot the problem.


    13. 08-27-2009 12:56 AM #13
      i also have a power drain....
      so once you've determined, lets just assume that its the power windows, then what? how would someone go about fixing a known power drain? its not like finding the drain fixes the problem so, then what, harness replacement, window motor replacement, where does one start? i have never dealt with a power drain before and i dont know where mine is yet but it would be nice to know what the best steps are once i find out what the cause is....
      Quote Originally Posted by BlueVR View Post

      yes i am still into Vag...

    14. Member dogger's Avatar
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      08-27-2009 01:03 AM #14
      If wires were rubbing against the chassis the only way they could cause battery drain would be if they were wires that need to see ground in order to trigger something that will power up. If those wires were positive voltage wires they would either pop a fuse or melt the wiring possibly causing a fire.

    15. 08-27-2009 06:27 AM #15
      Get a test light and start pulling fuses one by one. Once that sucker lights up nice and bright your on track to your battery drain A notorious place for drain is also the truck light

    16. Member Pottery_Pal's Avatar
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      08-27-2009 08:54 AM #16
      Quote, originally posted by hubbell »
      i also have a power drain....
      so once you've determined, lets just assume that its the power windows, then what? how would someone go about fixing a known power drain? its not like finding the drain fixes the problem so, then what, harness replacement, window motor replacement, where does one start? i have never dealt with a power drain before and i dont know where mine is yet but it would be nice to know what the best steps are once i find out what the cause is....


      In the instance of power window circuit battery drain I will start by reviewing the electrical schematic in the bentley manual. I will make a running list of all the components in the circuit, ie. switches, modules, relays any thing that could be pulling a load. I will then begin removing each load in a systematic way.

      When the current draw drops near zero then you have found the leg within the circuit causing the problem. Then you have to trace it to a wiring issue or component within that leg.


    17. 08-27-2009 09:39 AM #17
      Check if the clicking sound comes from the rear left panel, if it does, then the problem is the power window control module.

      if the problem is the power window control module (I think it is) here is what I did, and solved my problem.

      http://forums.vwvortex.com/zerothread?id=4084448

      Good Luck


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