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Discussion Starter #1
The battery on my 2003 Element has been inexplicably draining if left sitting for more than overnight to the point where it almost can't turn over the engine. I've traced this to the "Back Up" circuit through the fuse box, but I have no idea what that is and what exactly could be the issue.

Ideas?
 

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Interesting as Ive just discovered this on my 07. At first I suspected a ground or other issue from the custom stereo install but all that is not the issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have a stock radio. The only drain should really be come from the little flashing anti-theft light when the car is off, but certainly it shouldn't kill the battery in that short period of time.

I've had the new battery tested and it's good. Hmmmm.
 

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Im hoping to get mine one the rack this week to check all grounds and leads. I did notice corrosion on the negative terminal so I wonder if there may be some on the alternator leads.
 

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This thread describes my problem with my 2003. I am having the same problem, brand new battery drains if the cars sits any length of time (brand new alternator also). I do have a trailor light connection that I plugged into the wiring harness 4 years ago. It was not a Honda part, but came from a reputable supplier. Would appreciate any suggestions in tracking down my problem.
 

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One method: Set the dome light to the off position. Make sure you have your radio code ready, and be prepared to reset your driver's window. Disconnect the negative terminal from the battery and put a VOM, set to milliAmperes (mA), between the battery post and terminal. Pull the fuse for the radio (to take the tiny draw for the clock and radio code memory out of the mix), noting where it has to go back later. Then pull the other fuses one at a time while a helper watches the meter. If pulling a fuse causes the reading to drop, you have a good place to start in finding the parasitic draw. Remember that you have two fuse boxes, one under the dash and another under the hood.
 

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Thanks for the tip. I found a posting on another site that recommended changing the a/c compressor clutch relay. I replaced that and the condenser fan relay (7.00 each at dealer). I will do the voltmeter check also. Will report back.
 

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So, to be exact ...
______
To measure the amount of "damage" the current in the car, at the stop (eg by working alarm sensors) - otherwise the current measurement, you should do so:


The red wire connected to the VΩ
Black wire to the COM
Selector to 20m range
Disconnect the negative pole (-) on the battery
"Bolt" red wire from the meter "to touch" to clamp the battery cable disconnected
"Bolt" black wire "to touch" to stem the minus (-) battery, which is normally the one you removed the cable is connected.


When cars riding low leakage current of 0,04-0,06 A low battery may cause
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To measure the correct battery charging, the voltage measurement, you should do so:


Fired car,
Knob on the meter set to DC 20V (DCV)
"Bolt" red line "touch" to the positive (+) terminals of the battery-clamp
"Bolt" black wire "touch" to the weight of the car, eg engine block, and also to the negative (-) terminals of the battery-clamps.
Read the result - correct it in the vicinity of 13.5 to 14.5 V at 3000 rev / min
Then turn on all the current collectors and re-check the load at 3000 r / min
It should not fall below 0.4 V below the previous state.
If the car can not run due to the low engine speed, then you need to check the battery voltage when the starter switch.
To do this, connect the wires as above and with the help of another person who starts the car, read the voltage value.
If the voltage is below 10V at 20 * C (68*F) , then charge the battery and perform the test again.
 

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Problem solved. Car sat for 2 1/2 days. Starter was strong, no problem starting. If your battery is inexplicably going dead, try replacing the a/c compressor fan relay and the cooling fan relay first.
 

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I'm experiencing the same problem, I'm not really handy with doing any work to my car my self so I took it to Honda and had them test all my relays and fuses. they could not find anything that would cause the battery drain. Alternator, starter all tested fine and passed. the old battery passed as well, but ive replaced that battery with a new Interstate battery last week just to be totally sure, had no problem for about a week and then it happened again. I would be so upset if there was a major malfunction with my car-- any other ideas?
 

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I am in the same situation.

My battery died a few weeks back (never had this problem before) and would not charge. I replaced the battery and still had the problem of it being ALMOST dead once a week.

The other day I did a long drive - about 30 mins - parked the car, did some shopping and drove about 100 yards down the road. Parked it, did some shopping came out and it was dead. Waited a few minutes and it (barely) started.

I read about the relays so I pulled out and ordered a couple. They haven't come yet, but this morning the battery was almost dead again.

No idea what else to try. Dome lights are all going off, etc.... Maybe I'll try unplugging the factory amp.
 

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2003 Element trailer wiring harness causing dead battery?

or any trailer wiring harness or patched in connection for trailer/aux lights?
I recently installed a 3rd part trailer hitch wiring assmbly and have had dead battery issues since. I just bought a new battery 3 days ago... this morning it was dead again after sitting overnight. Tonight or tomorrow I will remove the trailer hitch wiring assembly.

It sounds like some people have had issues with the trailer wiring harnesses in the past? Why would this cause battery drain?

Thanks!
 

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I'm experiencing the same problems. Anyone find a concrete solution yet? Battery is good, alternator output is good. Every morning I cross my fingers to to see if my car starts.
 

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I'm experiencing the same problems. Anyone find a concrete solution yet? Battery is good, alternator output is good. Every morning I cross my fingers to to see if my car starts.
Don’t replace any parts before identifying where the parasitic draw is coming from.

Verify battery is good-
It should stay at or above 9.6 volts when load tested at 1/2 of rated cca (see sticker on battery) for 15 seconds.

Verify alternator is good- use voltmeter at battery
Quick easy check- Battery voltage should be close to or at 14 volts at 2500rpm with all loads on (a/c, defrost, flashers, radio, blower, lights...etc)

If both of those are looking good.. than you have a “parasitic draw”. ( some circuit is staying energized when it should be off, pulling amperage out of battery when it shouldn’t...)

Make sure ignition is fully off. Pull key out ignition to make sure. Visually make sure interior lights, aftermarket stereos, etc are all off.

-Switch digital meter to amps (dc). Don’t forget to swap Red lead to “amp” terminal on meter.

-Disconnect negative cable at battery and connect positive lead of meter to cable end. Connect negative lead of meter to negative post of battery.

- reading should be 50 milliamps or less (generic). But should be closer to 20ma or less. Depending on year, may take a few minutes for all modules to “sleep”. Just set meter up with leads clamped and walk away. Come recheck after 20 minutes.

- if reading is over 50 ma - You have to locate draw. While watching meter start pulling fuses 1 at a time from fuse boxes.

- when the meter shows a significant drop in amps once fuse is pulled, that will indicate what circuit is being energized when it should be “off”. That is what is killing battery.

- after identifying circuit- next you need to research what components are on that circuit which may be staying on.

- put fuse back in to so meter shows draw again-

- one by one start unplugging those components in circuit.

- when the meter again shows drop in milliamp reading, you have located the draw.

Hope this helps
 

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Don’t replace any parts before identifying where the parasitic draw is coming from.

Verify battery is good-
It should stay at or above 9.6 volts when load tested at 1/2 of rated cca (see sticker on battery) for 15 seconds.

Verify alternator is good- use voltmeter at battery
Quick easy check- Battery voltage should be close to or at 14 volts at 2500rpm with all loads on (a/c, defrost, flashers, radio, blower, lights...etc)

If both of those are looking good.. than you have a “parasitic draw”. ( some circuit is staying energized when it should be off, pulling amperage out of battery when it shouldn’t...)

Make sure ignition is fully off. Pull key out ignition to make sure. Visually make sure interior lights, aftermarket stereos, etc are all off.

-Switch digital meter to amps (dc). Don’t forget to swap Red lead to “amp” terminal on meter.

-Disconnect negative cable at battery and connect positive lead of meter to cable end. Connect negative lead of meter to negative post of battery.

- reading should be 50 milliamps or less (generic). But should be closer to 20ma or less. Depending on year, may take a few minutes for all modules to “sleep”. Just set meter up with leads clamped and walk away. Come recheck after 20 minutes.

- if reading is over 50 ma - You have to locate draw. While watching meter start pulling fuses 1 at a time from fuse boxes.

- when the meter shows a significant drop in amps once fuse is pulled, that will indicate what circuit is being energized when it should be “off”. That is what is killing battery.

- after identifying circuit- next you need to research what components are on that circuit which may be staying on.

- put fuse back in to so meter shows draw again-

- one by one start unplugging those components in circuit.

- when the meter again shows drop in milliamp reading, you have located the draw.

Hope this helps
 

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Don’t replace any parts before identifying where the parasitic draw is coming from.

Verify battery is good-
It should stay at or above 9.6 volts when load tested at 1/2 of rated cca (see sticker on battery) for 15 seconds.

Verify alternator is good- use voltmeter at battery
Quick easy check- Battery voltage should be close to or at 14 volts at 2500rpm with all loads on (a/c, defrost, flashers, radio, blower, lights...etc)

If both of those are looking good.. than you have a “parasitic draw”. ( some circuit is staying energized when it should be off, pulling amperage out of battery when it shouldn’t...)

Make sure ignition is fully off. Pull key out ignition to make sure. Visually make sure interior lights, aftermarket stereos, etc are all off.

-Switch digital meter to amps (dc). Don’t forget to swap Red lead to “amp” terminal on meter.

-Disconnect negative cable at battery and connect positive lead of meter to cable end. Connect negative lead of meter to negative post of battery.

- reading should be 50 milliamps or less (generic). But should be closer to 20ma or less. Depending on year, may take a few minutes for all modules to “sleep”. Just set meter up with leads clamped and walk away. Come recheck after 20 minutes.

- if reading is over 50 ma - You have to locate draw. While watching meter start pulling fuses 1 at a time from fuse boxes.

- when the meter shows a significant drop in amps once fuse is pulled, that will indicate what circuit is being energized when it should be “off”. That is what is killing battery.

- after identifying circuit- next you need to research what components are on that circuit which may be staying on.

- put fuse back in to so meter shows draw again-

- one by one start unplugging those components in circuit.

- when the meter again shows drop in milliamp reading, you have located the draw.

Hope this helps
First, thank you for posting this.

I disconnected my negative cable then connected the meter between the now removed cable and the negative terminal. The meter was set at 150mA and it pegged the needle and blew a fuse on the meter. The fuse was 200mA and I bought 500mA those immediately blew.

I switched to the old tin foil trick just so I could run the tests by removing a fuse then tapping the negative lead from the meter to the negative terminal. I removed every fuse inside and out including the large ones and even the ones that area screwed down IGN, BAT, etc.

Nothing reduced the current.

Brand new Interstate battery and it does have a trailer hitch wiring harness.

Any further ideas?
 
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