security systems

Submitted: Sunday, Jun 12, 2011 at 23:40
ThreadID: 86933 Views:1507 Replies:11 FollowUps:2
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My starting battery has gone flat twice now. I have taken it to an auto electrician to check things out, and he cant see what can be drawing power when it is parked up for a week or so.
I have heard that some security systems can drain your battery if you dont lock up the vehicle with the remote. Can this be true?
Here is the latest symptoms I have. My wife went to start the car, and a grinding sound was made. (starter motor?) but then my son jumped the aux battery to the main, (Red arc system) and it started no problem. when they got to their destination, my son disconnected the aux battery and it started off the main battery. prior to this episode, the car had been sitting for a week with the security system un-locked.
any feed back is appreciated.
PS my son put the mulimeter on both batteries and the main was 12.06 and the aux was 12.88.

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Reply By: SDG - Sunday, Jun 12, 2011 at 23:58

Sunday, Jun 12, 2011 at 23:58
Recently had my battery checked. It showed over the 12volt mark, but the cranking was cold cranking was about 400 instead of the 600 it should be. Resulting in not starting as it should.
AnswerID: 457224

Reply By: OREJAP - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 00:23

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 00:23
I have had a similar problem with vehicle sitting & not being started for 3 to 4 days. Start battery either won't turn the engine over or just too flat. Without trying to sound knowledgeable on this, just because a volt meter indicates a good battery status don't be fooled...the only way to check a battery is with a hydrometer & putting the battery under load IMHO
AnswerID: 457226

Reply By: Ozhumvee - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 08:19

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 08:19
12.06 is pretty flat, down to around 10% of capacity, certainly wouldn't start the engine.
Taking batteries past 12.2v which is approx 50% SOC is detrimental to their health.
AnswerID: 457235

Reply By: snoopyone - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 09:29

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 09:29
The make of vehicle may help get some answers.

I recently had the same problem with a Croozer TD leave it sitting and both batteries flattened.

Ended up removing the REDARC for two weeks and just bolting the two cables together. No more troubles so bought a new Redarc.
Seemed to fix it as left it for over a week and it started OK off the main only
AnswerID: 457247

Follow Up By: Member - Desert Storm (QLD) - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 16:22

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 16:22
Its an '06 Nissan Patrol. It has a heart transplant and is now a 6.5L V8 Chevy. The dual batteries were put in after the engine conversion, and also the security system. the security system is a Cyclops.

FollowupID: 730414

Reply By: dbish - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 09:55

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 09:55
In modern vehicles the radio can also be suspect as they dont have old style on/off switches, they digitaly switched on/off. Have had a few that will switch on themselves & flatten the battery, the radio unit its self was faulty.
AnswerID: 457254

Reply By: MEMBER - Darian, SA - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 09:56

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 09:56
My 05 100 GXL landcruiser is showing the same sort of symptoms - sitting for a week can be iffy, re starting - it has two crankers and an aux - it gets little use when we are not travelling, so I now run the smart charger over the batteries each weekend - takes about an hour or less to top them up - I connect to one and the charge eventually runs right through the bank - there is definitely a drain in mine - and the car has an after market security setup. I always take the ign. keys out (leaving them in causes a drain I'm told, even when turned right off), but I don't lock the car.
Re the above on voltage - conventional wisdom suggests a battery with no useful cranking output can still show what seems to be acceptable voltage (until used).
AnswerID: 457255

Reply By: Member - Desert Storm (QLD) - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 16:26

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 16:26
thanks for all your comments guys. we are all on the same page...something is drawing power from the battery. Now i am just wondering why I paid an auto electrician to tell me that everything was fine!?
might have to do a crash course on auto electricals myself one day......
BTW, the security system is called Cyclops, and it has a blue flashing light on the steering column. that thing just flashes all the time! locked or un locked..
AnswerID: 457285

Reply By: Crusader - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 17:34

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 17:34
Hi John,
For what it's worth we have just been through an intermittently flat battery in my wifes Berlina Wagon. It would start fine on a daily basis but on occasions if left for two or three days would go flat. It was eventually traced to an intermittent fault in the glove compartment light switch !!!

We and our auto electrician had looked for all the hard things first and I guess the lesson for us was plain - we should have checked all the obvious things first.

Try putting an ammeter in line at the battery with the ignition off and see if there is any current being drawn. Then pull fuses one at a time until you can identify the problem circuit. It may help or you may have already done it but good luck - it can be bloody annoying having this kind of fault.


AnswerID: 457297

Follow Up By: Member - Bill B1 (NSW) - Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 20:48

Monday, Jun 13, 2011 at 20:48
I stored my Prado for 6 weeks and the battery was flat after 4 weeks when the mechanic tried to open the doors with the remote.

Charged up, work done, I picked it up and drove for a few months not leaving it idle much more than a day.

Went on a houseboat for 4 days and when i came back, it was flat again.

The electrician pronounced the battery dead beyond recall and blamed the initial drain incident.

He checked the truck for current drain with a new battery fitted and found that the Toyota security system was draining some milli-amps. Nothing else.

His opinion is that you cannot leave a battery for that long (6 weeks) without some form of trickle charge being used regularly. ie perhaps a small solar panel.
He also said that the first time it was drained was the beginning of the end as they don't usually regain their full charge.

Bill B

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FollowupID: 730460

Reply By: Member - Troll 81 (QLD) - Tuesday, Jun 14, 2011 at 11:13

Tuesday, Jun 14, 2011 at 11:13
Get a amp meter onto your battery and see how many amps are going out when the car is off.
AnswerID: 457373

Reply By: Shaker - Tuesday, Jun 14, 2011 at 11:51

Tuesday, Jun 14, 2011 at 11:51
Sometimes an outside influence can stop the security system from letting the vehicle "go to sleep"
There was a recent case where a Range Rover had battery problems when parked at home, it turned out to be caused by a "Cent o Meter" installed in the house meter box.
AnswerID: 457377

Reply By: ben_gv3 - Tuesday, Jun 14, 2011 at 11:54

Tuesday, Jun 14, 2011 at 11:54
What are you worried about??? It is the ulimate security system since the thief can't drive your pride and joy away since it won't even start ;-ppp
AnswerID: 457378

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