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Old 09-17-2012, 08:35 PM   #1
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Battery going dead on my Chevy 1500

Ok guys...need some help!

I have a 2004 Chevy 1500....works great for me except for one problem....over the last 6 months or so I will come out in the morning and my truck is dead....and when I say dead...not even a dim dome light. It is random...sometimes once a month, sometimes once a week.

Since it is random I just can't find it.....I am guessing a relay is sticking and something is staying on....but I have tried putting my amp meter on the car so I could start pulling fuses and at least find which circuit, but have not caught it when it is sticking....there is no rhyme or reason....it just happens....

Anyone seen this on a 1500 and have a suggestion on where to go next? Given the random nature I am at a loss on where to go next.....
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:47 PM   #2
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This may seem like a silly question, but how old is the battery? More than 5 years old is not a good sign.
Also, I had a 2002 chevy where the battery developed a bad internal connection between the terminal and the plates. Never had that type of problem before or since.
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Old 09-17-2012, 09:19 PM   #3
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Battery is only 2 years old...but is getting pretty beat up with this problem I am sure....so I dont think it is in the battery, but obviously wont rule it out 100%...I can jump it pretty easily with my jump start battery pack and after I run the truck for about 10-15 minutes it will restart just fine.....
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Old 09-17-2012, 09:27 PM   #4
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Back when I was a shadetree mechanic and cars/trucks had spark plugs, points and no computers, I probably could have figured out your problem. Today, any time something goes wrong, you just blame the computer. In this case, you very well may be having a computer issue....it may be routing power to a component that is discharging the battery randomly. With any luck, your dealer or a good mechanic with a diagnostic computer may be able to pinpoint the gremlin in your truck.
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:06 PM   #5
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I'd probably rig up some way to easily put an amp meter so that I could check it each day when turned off. On a go-dead day you should easily see the high draw when off.

You could use something like this: http://www.griotsgarage.com/product/bypass+fuse.do

Open the green knob and then measure amps across the "brass contacts". I would take out the 15 amp fuse in this sample.

Just a thought....once you catch it you can track it down....

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Old 09-18-2012, 04:33 AM   #6
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When my instrament cluster was acting up it would kill the battery if I did not drive the truck for a few days. But it was not random, it was a constant drain. If I unplugged the fuse to the cluster there was no drain. That`s all I can come up with.
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:07 AM   #7
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The trick for those truck start batteries is to never let them drop below 11-12VDC. They self destruct when that happens...
The newer trucks have three or four computers running all the time I guess... It is really hard for me to keep the batteries going here. My truck sits more than it is used.

After you get a new battery maybe one of those trickle charge solar things to sit on your dashboard will help. On my truck the cigarette lighter turns off after a few minutes so I would have to run a line directly to the battery I guess....

Another trick might be to install a deep cycle battery ??? At least it would handle the charge cycles when it got run down to 0 charge state.

All I really know is that every time I let my regular truck start battery get discharged to the point where the smallest light doesn't work then it is never the same again for holding a charge... Time for a new one....

I even thought one time it might be a good idea to install a disconnect switch for the battery. Then I found out doing this kills all of the computers and then when you turn the battery back on the motor doesn't run good, the alternator does run right and who knows what else needs reset. I never could get my idle going again like it was suppose to and had to take it in to Ford and pay the $90 to put it on their machine to reset the computers settings. Go figure...

Trickle charge may be the best answer
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:58 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoyBraddy View Post


All I really know is that every time I let my regular truck start battery get discharged to the point where the smallest light doesn't work then it is never the same again for holding a charge... Time for a new one....


That`s for sure. Killing them stone dead is hard on them and they will not last long after that.
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