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Ask Eric Your Own Question
Eric, Automotive Repair Shop Manager
Category: Buick
Satisfied Customers: 31913
Experience:  20+ yrs. experience as repair shop manager and technician.
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List is too long. The immediate issue is the battery is draining

Customer Question

List is too long. The immediate issue is the battery is draining at night
JA: Sometimes things that you think will be really complicated end up being easy to fix with Buick. The Buick Mechanic I'm going to connect you with knows all the tricks and shortcuts. Tell me a bit more about what's going on so he can help you best.
Customer: Battery was dead when went to open it today. It has been weak sevaral mornings. I jumped it and it is fine. Something is draining it at night
JA: Battery issues can be tough to diagnose - lots of things to consider. Luckily, the mechanic I'm going to connect you with knows all the tricks and shortcuts. Are you hoping to fix this yourself?
Customer: That would be great if possible
JA: Is there anything else the Buick Mechanic should be aware of about your Buick?
Customer: I took it in to have the drivers heated checked and the heating element was blown for the second time. I opted not to fix it because it is out of warranty. The rear windows will not roll down since then. Also power outlet in backseat does not work. Navigation system will not hold memory
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Buick Mechanic about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Buick
Expert:  Eric replied 1 year ago.
HI,Ok, first, what is the year and model of your Buick? Second, do you have multimeter that reads volts, ohms and amps, as well as a decent working knowledge of automotive 12v systems and know how to read wiring schematics?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
2011 regal turbo. I do have a multimeter and no on the last one
Expert:  Eric replied 1 year ago.
HI, Ok, finding a parasitic drain does require working knowledge of automotive 12v systems and the ability to read wiring schematics as once we find the circuit the drain is on, then you have to be able to read that circuit's wiring schematic and understand how each component on that circuit works and understand how to test each one to see which is causing the draw on the battery. I will try to help you but we may get to the point that it is beyond your capabilities. The first step is the parasitic drain test Turn off all accessories and remove the key from the ignition switch.Unplug any device from the lighter socket, even if your device is turned off.Unscrew the light bulb from under the hood just enough to turn it offo begin the amperage method test, disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery terminal. This is the black cable connected to the battery post with the negative (-) sign next to it. Then, connect your digital meter's ground (black) probe to the negative battery post.Connect the meter's positive (red) probe to the battery cable terminal you just disconnected.Set your multimeter to the highest setting on the DC (direct current) amperage scale and turn it on.Now, check your meter's display. It should read zero amps.Move the meter's dial to the next lower setting on the amperage scale.Keep moving to a lower setting until you detect the presence of current. On a vehicle without a parasitic drain problem, this current is within a range of about 50 milliamps (mA). On a vehicle with a parasitic drain problem, this current will be higher than the normal range.A higher amperage reading means you have a problem in one or more of the electrical circuits. Continue with the next steps and leave your multimeter connected to the battery. Use a pair of plastic clamps to hold the meter probes to the battery terminals, or ask an assistant for help. To locate the faulty circuit, start pulling out fuses, one at a time, from each of your vehicle's fuse boxes. Begin with the under-hood fuse box, if there's one. Pull one of the fuses and watch your meter's reading. Then re-install the fuse. Keep pulling fuses one at a time until you see the unusual amperage reading on your meter go down to within normal range. When this happens, the circuit that fuse protects is faulty. Once you have located the fuse that when it is pulled causes the reading to drop to 50ma or less, let me know the exact fuse and then we will trace that circuit
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Could it be the security system?
Expert:  Eric replied 1 year ago.
HI, It could be the security system, but that is what doing the proper testing is about - to determine the fuse circuit first and then go from there.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok thanks. I will look tonight
Expert:  Eric replied 1 year ago.
HI,ok, sounds good