New battery goes dead over night


Asked by Apr 28, 2015 at 05:09 PM about the 2010 Mercury Grand Marquis LS

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

2010 mercury grand marquis. New battery goes dead over night. Trunk light is off, glove compartment light is off, vanity lights in visors are off. AC compressor is not engaged when vehicle is not running. Electric cooling fans are not running. Blower motor for HVAC is not running when vehicle is not running. The current load at the battery is .2A with everything off and vehicle not running. Nothing seems to be on; I can't see hear or smell anything in the passenger compartment or under the hood. This problem came up without any indication. We went to the grocery store, the car cranked normally; when we came out: the battery was so drained it would only click the solenoid. We assumed the battery at 5 years old had given up the ghost. We went back in, purchased a new battery, and the car cranked with no problem. The next morning the new battery was dead. Fully charged the new battery reads at 12.5V. With the car running the voltage across the terminals is 13.8V, which tells me the alternator is OK. I hate to trade; it only has 57K miles. There is about a 2 hour window where it will crank before the battery gets too low. I have a good trade-in quote. If I were to trade and let them “find” the problem after the sale: could they come after me? Never met an honest car salesman in my life! Electrical problems are very expensive and time consuming, the car also needs new tires. With what I have for new tires and about $5,000.00 left after pay off should make a decent down payment. Your thoughts?

20 Answers


You need some time, patience and a Multimeter....

4 of 4 people found this helpful.

Thanks for the info. I have a good top-of-the-line Fluke so I should be OK there. Most of my experience is in 3 phase industrial applications and digital logic circuits. All I need to find now is an owners manual and a Chilton book. "time and patience" can be in short supply sometimes ! LOL. Tonight I'll just disconnect the negative cable so she'll start in the morning, and take it back off when I get to the shop. After work; I'll start with the under hood fuse box. I've run across a couple of people having various electrical problems with the later model Panther platform vehicles. The car looked so good 3 years ago with 35K miles at $12,000.00, now I wonder who got a "deal". No more Ford products for this old boy !


Usually it's something that can be repaired, and you can drive it for many more miles/years to come. Don't get hung up on it.


That's what I am hoping ! LE in my neck of the woods uses the Panther platform which they sell off after about 300,000 miles on the odometer. I believe the extended service life is because their vehicles are equipped with oil coolers. I checked the oil temperature on mine and it was hovering around 200 degrees F. I installed an aftermarket oil cooler at 36,000 miles. The oil temperature, at the filter, now hovers around 140 degrees F after a long drive. My electrical situation got stranger today. I left the battery connected all night long and the battery voltage was just over 12 V. When I opened the door; the cabin lights came on real dim, as if the battery was dead. The car cranked up with no problem. There must be something in the cabin lighting circuit. Headlights, tail lights, and turn signals are as bright as they should be. When I got home from work; I checked the battery voltage at 12.5 V 5 hours ago, I just checked it again and it's still at 12.5 V. I'm going to let the car sit idle for the next 12 hours and check the battery voltage again. I hope this isn't the start of an intermittent problem. Permanent problems are much easier to troubleshoot. The issue with the dim cabin lights, visor vanity lights no longer work (they did about a week ago) the reading lights, front and rear also quit. That circuit may be a good starting point ? I haven't installed any radios or other electrical accessories. The harness is still 100% factory.


After my last post: the battery seems to hold a charge now. However: the cabin lights that were very dim no longer come on at all, including the reading lights and visor lights. Woody Anderson Ford promised an owners manual and the factory key code for the buttons on the door. Never got anything. Without the owners manual; I have no idea what fuse does what. I wish I had gone to Consumer Reports website first! If I had; I would have found out that the Panther platform cars are "do not buy" because of various issues about reliability and quality. Toyota would have been my choice; had I known. What other problems are in store? This was to have been my "retirement car", now I'm afraid to go more than 20 miles and stay anywhere for more than an hour or so. My son just moved 600 miles in a career advancement. Now I have no dependable way to go visit.


I'm on my 3rd Grand Marquis, these cars have never let me down, on any of my trips. The LCM lighting control module is a known problem, get a rebuilt one on EBAY. Sure, Toyota is better, but love the one you're with. It will last a long time, way longer then GM.


Where is the LCM located ? My reasoning in purchasing the Grand Marquis was partly based on LE in my neck of the woods who uses the Crown Vic, they have several hundred in their fleet, and they typically don't sell them off till after they run up 300K+ miles. they're basically the same vehicle with the exception of a beefed up suspension system, dual exhaust, and oil cooler. Every time I go to the dealership where I got my Grand Marquis; there are loads of Crown Vics in for service, routine service is done in a county garage, so I assume they're there for major problems (probably electrical). I have confidence in the mechanical aspects, it's unknowns in the electrical systems that concern me. So far I had to replace the electric trunk lid release and the AC controller went out at a cost at the dealership around $700.00. Are there any other known electrical surprises in store? I'd rather replace parts before they fail than be left stranded on the side of the interstate for hours. The stretch of interstate I would be on is a major drug trafficking route.....not many friendly travelers there ! There's only 57K on the odometer. this was supposed to be the last new car, ever, at my age.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

The LCM is way down under the steering colum. The problem is you will have to get it out, put the shifter back partly to drive it, send it in for rebuilding, then re-install. These LCM's are a problem for everyone, and the electronic climate control is another, but that wouldn't stall you on the road. Other than those two things, these cars are very reliable. That's low miles, shame to get rid of it. I just bought one with 30K, and I've had no trouble, but it was hard to find. I drove my '93 for 14 years until it had way over 100K.My Wife's 2005 went 70K with the LCM and master cylinder being the only problems. It never broke down. Almost all these cars need a new master cylinder, by the way.


Another thought, replace fuel filter if you haven't done so. Have the MAF sensor cleaned with spray cleaner. Both easy jobs. I cousin drove his 'till 160K. It was an older one. Carry an extra fuel pump fuse. C Ya


Just ordered a new LCM on eBay for $300.00. I'd rather go with new than rebuilt because of return policies on electrical components. The seller provided me with a link to another site where there is a shop willing to pay $25.00 for the old unit. The electronic climate control module put me back $700.00 at a Ford dealer last year. This could be an expensive beast to own since these parts only last for 50K miles! This explains why all of those LE flavor Crown Vics in the service department? I try to do most of my own work because of what they charge in the dealership shops.


Thanks ! Hadn't thought about the fuel filter. I clean the MAF sensor every time I replace the air filter with carburetor cleaner, I use an entire full can . My wife drives a 1999 Pontiac with the 3800 engine. The "check engine" light had come on. Upon remembering a trick I learned from an old timer about how to clean carbon deposits from the combustion chambers when gasoline had lead additives. I slowly metered 1 liter of distilled water through the throttle body at a fast idle, about 1500 RPM till I could hear the engine barely begin to stumble. Apparently; the oxygen sensors had some build up on them because the "check engine" light went off, saved me the parts and labor; BIG TIME !. I surmise this because most of the "check engine" indicators are the result of a failure of the oxygen sensor. I'll purchase a new master cylinder, just in case. At least a master cylinder don't catastrophically fail, so I'll know when it's time. What's the problem with the factory master cylinders ? My '86 244 Volvo has over 400K with the factory master cylinder still in place. One of the front wheel calibers is the only component, save 2 sets of pads (all around), I had to replace. When I get the new LCM installed; I'll post again. Your experience with the Panther platform is a great source of information and a confidence builder. I've always been a fan of BOF rear wheel drive vehicles because of the robust construction. I worked 18 years for one of the major bearing companies in R&D for drive-line applications in the automotive industry, including all manufacturers. One of the projects I worked on was the Saturn in the early '80s. We had engines on the dynometer go for the equivalent of 400 K miles, early on. Talk about "planned obsolescence" ! 400K was way too much to build them that good. Blocks were lightened up and certain materials were changed to make sure they didn't last that long. "Planned obsolescence" is probably what led to the demise of what could have been the best designed medium sized sedan EVER. The Neon project was another to get the "treatment". I also did some work for the Korean manufacturers; those guys wanted more than existing technology was capable of. They actually want to build exceptional machines. For small engines and their various applications: "Weed Eater" and "Home-lite" are the best engineered.


Hey Kim, interesting stories. I always though "home-lite" was good, and Saturn was bad.I don't know if others have master cyl problems like I do, but every car I've had needed one right after I bought it. Pedal goes down an inch or so, and is mushy. I'm still fighting with re- bleeding my 2002 to get the pedal up top like it should be. My Mercury(Nissan) van needed a new one, and the front calipers froze on a vacation trip. it was horrible.It's true, my old volvos never needed one. I owned about 6. I've owned over 300 cars. Check my website. Car people like "Chrome Under The Hood" The first song is about the 45 record players we had in 1961, cruising downtown in our cool rides. The lead guitar was done in Nashville. I wrote and arranged everything.


My new LCM came in today. There is a handwritten note on the invoice stating "need to be re-programmed when installing". I thought this is a part you could just swap out. It came in a "Ford Genuine Parts" box with this on the label: ONE 7W1Z-13C788-A PROCESSOR I can't seem to find anything more than a post alluding to "programming" one of these things. A couple of other posters seem to have just installed the LCM and drove away. I can't afford to "brick" this thing. Are you aware of an installation procedure? Thanks Again !

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

This is a new one on me, I've never heard of programming the LCM. It's just a hard wired unit. I'd just install it and see what happens. Maybe the remotes need to be reprogramed? Sorry I'm not more help, this is strange. maybe call a ford mechanic? I'll do some more research. It's pretty tough to get to under the column.


I found this I guess the newer ones can be programmed, but should work out of the box. ubb=showflat&Number=1277749

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
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Thanks for the time you spent on this. I relyy like everything about this car. BOF and rear wheel drive in American sedans is just about gone from the market place. The electrical problems are a bummer! You'd think that such a mature platform would be just about perfect, save for the occasional mishaps in the assembly plant. Thanks again!


FYI and others who may be having this problem: Here's the scoop about "re-programming" an LCM from the ebay seller who sells both new and rebuilt LCM modules. My Q&A regarding what happens if you don't "re-program: Me: "There is a handwritten note on the invoice inside the box the LCM came in. "need to be re-programmed when installing". How do I re-program the LCM? I am afraid to install it right now because I'm not familiar with the re-programming procedure. Will I damage it if I install it without re-programming it ?" ebay seller: "that part you will need to take to a mechanic they have the system to reprogram the lcm for you. this unit is new form ford. so it will need reprograming when the unit is used or have been rebuilt there is no need to reprogram" Me: "What happens if I put it in first and then take it to a shop where it can be re-programmed? the dealership could easily go over $500.00 just for the labor cost. I'm 67 and on a fixed income. Will it damage the LCM if I just install it and hope for the best outcome?" ebay seller: "no there will be no damage at all you can plug in the lcm the reprograming is for the policy car light inside will stay off so you will need to reprogramed the box so that your light inside can work correctly. your light outside the car will work just fine, you can drive with lights outside" I will be replacing the LCM this AM and will post about what happens without "re-programming" a Ford LCM.


Installed the new LCM yesterday: Checked the battery voltage at 12.8V and again this AM, about 14 hours after install, battery voltage was still 12.8V. Everything works as intended, without "re-programming". This may not be the outcome in all cases, however: the LCM can be installed without doing any harm. Hopefully this information can be of some help and comfort to others who had the same problems.


I know a lot about all this. First, the LCM lighting control module is a factory defect that causes many people problems. Rebuilt ones can be found on EBAY. Ford even payed some people back for this Leaky alternator diodes can also drain the battery, even though the alt. puts out OK. Also the built in regulater can go bad. Disconnect the battery and put a seat belt buzzer between the batt. and the cable, and go around unplugging things and fuses 'till you go crazy.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

hi My car Grand Marquis 2010 How do I change my car battery in the right way, and to lose the car without programming Thank you so much

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