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Thread: When arming the alarm the radio drains the battery

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    When arming the alarm the radio drains the battery

    Recently my VW GTI 2002 VR6 would not start after the car sitting for two days - battery would drain.

    I discovered that there was a draw of 140 mAmp when the car alarm is armed (did this test by putting an amp-meter in-line between the negative battery post and the battery cable).

    I started taking one fuse at a time and found that fuse 42 was doing the draw excesive. Fuse 42 is for the Monsoon radio (8 speakers and amplifier with one CD changer and tape, AM/FM).

    When pulling fuse 42 out the reading would drop to 50 mAmp. Is this normal for VW GTI 2002 VR6 2.8?

    When fuse 42 is in, the radio works fine however the two symptoms I found are the following:

    1. When the car alarms is armed then there is a parasitic draw of 140 mAmp

    2. When I remove the negative cable from the battery post the radio does not go into SAFE mode when I reconnect the battery cable to the battery post. I believe this is normal. According to another post this is normal since the radio has not been move to another car - right?

    Anyway, it is pretty sad I have to drive without radio (fuse 42 out) to avoid the parasitic draw while the car is sitting with the alarm armed. The worse part is that everything in the radio works great when putting the fuse 42 back in.

    The dealer said that I have to replace the radio and that will fix the issue however what if there is something wrong with the alarm since this drawing occurs when the alarm is armed.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated

  2. #2
    Maximum Bitrate boomintrac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    2hr west of Chicago
    You will probably get better results from a dedicated stereo forum with an alarm subtopic.

    Is the alarm factory or aftermarket?
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Everything is OEM...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Oh, I have also posted this topic in VWvortex. I am willing to go back to the dealer and pay the $460 they are asking to replace the radio however it would be real sad that it is actually the alarm or the amp or some wiring issue between the radio and and the speakers... or perhaps the relay that it in between the battery and fuse 42.

    Thanks for the suggestion

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