What causes the battery in my '98 Corvette C5 to lose charge in a matter of 4-5 days.(Third battery)in two years,

210

Asked by Apr 22, 2012 at 06:27 PM about the 1998 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

40 Answers

1,875

It sounds like you have excessive current draw, do you have an aftermarket radio or any other aftermarket electronics? Here is a link that should help out a lot http://forums.corvetteforum.com/1567522286-post590.html

19 of 19 people found this helpful.
Best Answer
115

It has an excessive draw evidently.

8 of 8 people found this helpful.
210

THANKS

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
210

If I pull F3 and F4 Fuses out my voltage drain seems to disappear. I am watching it for a day or two. What would that indicate?

12 of 12 people found this helpful.
315

I had same problem in my 96 vette and found it was the alternator diods caused draw darined battery in about 4 days. To check charge battery then disconnect battery and then disconnect wires to alternator tape any exposed wire connectors then reconnect battery let it sit for 4 or so days then dead key it check volt meter see if it is around 12 volts and if it is there is your problem. Alternator bad.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
1,875

Im not sure what you mean by F3 and F4, if you could tell me which fuse # and if its inside or under the hood I might be able to help out more.

4 of 4 people found this helpful.
210

They are under the hood #3 and #4 (10amp), I didn't know there were any inside the car. Where?

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
210

Thanhs for the answer about the alternator diodes. I'm just getting started trying to find my problem. Had another fellow tell me that if I tell him where my fuses 3&4 are located he might be able to help.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
210

Thanks Matt, I went to that site and found some good info to try.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
1,875

Those are your left and right headlamp motor fuses, if they are the cause of this then you probably have a bad ground associated with them or either they are staying on for some reason. Bill curlee on the corvette forum is an electrical genius when it come to the C5 corvette, he is the one who wrote the write up I linked to. Im sure if you send him a PM he could tell you exactly what and where to check. The other fuse box is on the passenger side, if you pull the floor mat back there will be a panel you can remove up front and you will see a the other fuse box.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.
210

Matt Hill-Thanks-I am new to this site and my troubleshooting leaves a little to be desired. I am not familiar as to how to "PM" this Bill Curlee you mentioned. I really do appreciate your help and would be greatful if I could get in contact with Bill and get his opinion on my delema(sp). If the voltage stays good overnight tonight with the fuses still out of the circuit, I should be able to assume that the problem stems from the headlamp motors. I want to isolate them individually and see if just one or both have a problem. How best do I contact Bill since I am not a paid member(I only have just the free access) Would appreciate his opinion.

1,875

All you have to do is click on his name and then send him a private message. You should be able to copy and paste the link that I mentioned and as long as you are signed in you will be able to click on his name to send him a message, you dont have to pay to access anything on that site. You can find a lot of good information on your corvette, I have personally saved thousands of dollars from the help I have gotten there.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
210

Thank you Matt. I am going to check that voltage again today to make sure I am on the right track. If you don't mind, I may get back with you if I can't get ahold of Bill. Thanks again.

495

Yes, the Corvette Forum is free. YOu have to sign in for an account. Bill is a very generous and knowledgeable guy. He'll definitely help you sort it out.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
210

Still haven't come up with anything concrete as far as what my voltage loss problem is. I put the fuses back in (one at a time) and for whatever reason the voltage didn't go down much today. (intermittent? I guess) I didn't do anything except move the driver side power seat. Someone had mentioned that the switch can stay on?? But how does fuse #3 and 4 tie to the voltage loss through a stuck switch on the power seat?

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
210

Where do I click on B. Curlee's name to be able to correspond with him?

1,875

You click on his name and then go to send private message.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
210

Matt-Thanks- I may need to just start over on my trouble shooting. Seems like what was looking promising has changed. As I said, I'm new to this site and it may sound stupid, but where is his name found to click on??

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
1,875

That if you go to the link that I posted earlier you will see a write up that he did and you will be able to click on his name from there.

210

Is there any way you can send this link to me. I can't find. Not too computer savvy.

15

hmm! maybe it's the obvious and you have a bad alternator

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
1,875

A bad alternator wont make a battery go dead after a few days of sitting...

3 of 3 people found this helpful.
1,875

Im not sure if this will work as a link but try copy and pasting this http://forums.corvetteforum.com/private.php? do=newpm&u=21968

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
210

I kind of thought that too. The car hasnt beenon the road for over a month. All along, for a couple of years I kept batt. tender hooked up. I had been told that the computer always draws some juice. About two weeks ago I charged with big charger. Didn't drive afterwards. Three days later checked it and the dome lites wouldn't even come on.Charged enough to get started and ran the car for 20 min. or so.Thats when I was seeing a discharge on my meter until I pulled 3 & 4 fuse. Seemed to stop the disch. so I put the fuses back one at a time. Since yesterday about noon until today at 5PM (with fuses in) it went from 12.46v to about 12.2 volts. I did move the drivers seat to mid travel but I don't see why that should be affecting it. I will try that forum address tomorrow or so and see what he has to say. Any troubleshooting ideas from your end? None of it makes sense to me. We were in Bowling green some months back and didn't have any problems.

1,875

Well at 12.4 volts you will likely have problems when you start to drive as it probably drops below the required voltage for the computers to boot up properly during startup. How old is your battery? We could be chasing our tails on this and it is just the battery. If the battery has bit the dust it will not hold a charge for very long and/or its voltage would drop well below the required. You can go to autozone or something similar and get your battery load tested to see if its still good.

210

The battery is less than a year old. Actually about 6 months. You may have hit on something though. Why is my voltage (when it is charged off the charger) that low, yet when I start the car the display shows 14.1 or 14.2 volts? Will get back to you in a few days after I look into this. I may be on a wild goose chase, but it still doesn't explain the fast 3-4 day discharge that I experienced . Seems like something stayed on that shouldn't have.

65

I have not tried this so I am shooting at the hip so I was told if have automatic transmission and you are not using car for a few days park car in reverse position problem is have to leave key ignition. This is info.I read on line somewhere don't know if true,but its suppose to take draw off battery and does'nt solve problem. Good luck.

65

About my last answer I said in first sentence Iwas told which is wrong. It should have said I read .

495

the reverse park thing is for manual cars only

65

Reverse in a C5 manual you have to put in reverse anyway to take key out ? Not sure since I have automatic. The artical I read pertained to auto. trans. corvette with battery going dead after a few days. I know in my case I would have chalk wheels and use e brake but again I never did it . I just read about it,do not know if it would work or not

210

Thanks for your comments but I'm not understanding what your trying to tell me with the key business and chalking the wheels. Mine is automatic.

210

Rob, thanks for your comment..

1,875

The C6 corvette was having battery drain issues if you did not park it in revers for some reason from my understanding. That was on manual cars only, Im not sure of the validity of that statement as I dont follow C6 vettes too closely as I have a 2002 c5 with manual. Also when you look at your battery voltage once the car is started it is telling you the state of your charging system not your battery. So in other words your alternator output is 14.xx volts. If you can check the voltage at the battery terminals while you are cranking it will give you some sort of idea of the condition of the battery. If it hasnt happened since it could have just been a fluke or that the battery had died and hadnt gotten up to full charge yet. My dads 2000 C5 did sometihng similar and it appeared to be find after a day charging but when we went back 2 days later it was dead again, we left the charger on for 2 days and then put the trickle charger on for about a week and ever since then its been fine.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
210

Thanks Matt. I'm sort of confused at this point in time. Went and bought a new charger since I got to where I didn't trust my 30 some year old one. Gonna start fresh this next week and weather permitting maybe even drive it a little and see what that brings for problems (if any)

65

This is what I read as I said never tried. Some C5s have battery drain problem. It stated if your going to park vette for a few days instead of putting shifter in Park leave shifter in Reverse and turn off it will shut off. As far as keys I pretty sure you cannot remove key from ignition unless in park. ( obviously park secure garage)Chalk wheels means put somthing under wheels prevent from moving. C6 has no ignition. Sorry for confusion just relaying.

1,875

Yea that shut off and park in reverse dealt with the C6 and only in manual cars.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
210

Thanks Matt

465

TO MATT & BUD; I'M NOT A MECHANIC & ALL TODAY'S DAMN TECHNOLOGY I'M A LITTLE LOST, THIS VETTE HAS A FUSE BOX UNDER THE HOOD FOR HEADLIGHT MOTORS, ANYTHING ELSE DOESN'T MATTER AT THIS TIME. I'M GETTING A FEELING, COULD SOMEBODY HAVE REPLACED ONE OR BOTH OF THOSE FUSES WITH THE WRONG AMPERE FUSE? AND IF SO COULD THIS BE WHERE BUT VAMPIRE LIVES?

1,875

Denis if the fuses were larger than specified then they would cause either the wiring or the motors them selves to burn up. It would not cause excessive power drain while the car is in sleep mode which occurs ~15 min after the car has been shut down and all doors are shut.

I have a 2005 vette, no headlight motors, always put it into reverse, (car reminds you anyway) had 4 batteries installed, been to 2 dealers on issue which they deny a issue. No one seems to know why the battery drain. Selling the piece of crap!

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