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Battery keeps dieing

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  • Battery keeps dieing

    My battery keeps dieing if I dont drive this truck for about a week. I have one of those yellow top performance batteries. I think my cap is draining it. I know all my control wires are turning off my amps and this never happened before the system is installed.

    I installed this system myself. I am pretty good with electricity, but I don't mess with cars much. I installed all this in a ford ranger. (I'm pretty sure this is all correct. Its been 2-3 years.)

    (RF= Rockford Fosgate)
    RF P300-1 (sub amp)
    RF RFC1D ( 1F Cap w/ digital readout)
    2 RF power blocks (1 for positive 1 for negative)
    Infinity REF475A (speaker amp)
    Infinity sub wired for 2 Ohms (can't remember the model but I know the RMS on all my equipment works out.)
    4 Infinity KAPPA692.9I (speakers)
    Alpine CDA-9886 (Head unit. Not the Marine version)

    I have the 4 gauge pos wire going into the cap and then into the power block the it splits to the amps. I got lazy and screwed the Neg to the floorboard behind the seat. (single cab) It follows the same route as the pos.

    In its fully charged state the cap read-out is 14.??VDC
    Everything minus the 2 speakers and the head unit is behind the 2 seats.

    I also have 2 less pressing matters.
    My Sub amp over heats really easy. I even mounted it on 4 small pieces of conduit (to elevate it) and put a 12v computer fan blowing across it.

    My Iphone JUST quit working on it. says Code 1 or something. Any ideas? (quit after I updated it which is what I have been blaming it on.

    If you need anymore info than the over-share I just typed, just ask. I want this fixed.

  • #2
    Something is drawing power when the engine is off.
    Figure out what it is.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?

    Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.


    • #3
      And disconnect the cap to see if that is the problem.
      Its voltmeter should only take about 10mA or less.


      • #4
        When I was running a cap (it's now a nice addition to my closet full of surplus audio stuff) it would go "to sleep" after a few minutes and draw almost nothing (like OldSpark is suggesting). Maybe your does not. Maybe remove it from the circuit and run without it for a week or so and see if the problem is solved. Otherwise, if you have the test equipment, start looking a the power draw when the truck is off as Darque suggested.
        Your amp getting so hot seems odd. I am running a couple of Infinities as well and I have never had heat issues even when they were just tossed in behind the seat and laying up against the fabric. Maybe there is more to this issue than the Cap??
        My 2007 Ford F350 Work Log located HERE


        • #5
          I'd suspect something else - like bad battery; alternator diode(s); and a "leak" anywhere - but pulling fuses or connectors should narrow that down.

          But faulty caps are not unheard of.

          On the other hand, useful caps are rarely hear of. (Qualification - a cap with superior performance to in situ cheaper batteries.)


          • #6
            New battery.
            Cap display stays on 24-7......well....till the batt dies

            I replaced my first batt when this started. Thats when I got the yellow top performance one


            • #7
              A new battery does not eliminate a bad battery. Especially after a few bad discharges!

              It may not be the problem - I'm just saying that (1) a problem can wreck a new (and any) battery and (2) a new battery can be faulty or soon collapse.
              Unfortunately the former voids the battery warranty.


              • #8
                +1 to what has been said. take the cap out of the equation and see what happens.

                there is no evidence that a cap helps with audio loads with a properly designed power system-- i have seen many articles disproving the need for a cap in a properly designed audio system, but zero articles proving that a cap benefits car audio..(many SPL competitors that ditch caps and have found that it raises their numbers 1-2 db)

                though, i am always open to being proven wrong--just be ready to post the numbers that accompany such a claim..
                My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
                "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"

                next project? subaru brz
                carpc undecided


                • #9
                  Dead Battery

                  You will need to see what the amp draw is when the system is 'sleep'. I recommend a clamp on DC meter on the battery +12v wire. When the vehicle goes to 'sleep', see what the draw is. Starting with your added hardware, disconnect them one at a time to see what is causing thet draw. This is a time consuming, but tried and true method of finding the problem.
                  I run into this problem all the time when servicing RVs with batteries that die after a few days.

                  Good luck and happy carputing!


                  • #10
                    Aight. Ill try that Saturday (putting an amp clamp on and maybe take the cap out if im not feeling lazy XD) . Soundman, even with a stock alternator you don't think a cap would keep my headlights from dimming every time my bass sub hits hard? I'll take it out. I mean my headlights really dont do me a lot of good if my truck wont start.

                    any ideas on the sub amp overheating?

                    And I'd just like to thank the lot of you for replying and being helpful and friendly.


                    • #11
                      Oh, btw. The meter I have is what I use for work (HVAC). Its a nice fluke but the DC amps is "true RMS" That will still work just as good wont it?


                      • #12
                        dimming headlights is a sign of inadequate power delivery. it could be related to your amp getting hot-- check for adequate grounds..

                        i run a 4x50rms(alpine-f300), and 2x150rms (sony 600watt amp) bridged amp in my 01 eclipse with zero dimming problems-- i also ran some smaller amps in my single cab 96 ranger for speakers i threw in the bed also with zero dimming problems..

                        also, it might be worth while to run the sub as 4 ohm-- it could be taxing the amp too much as a 2 ohm..
                        My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
                        "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"

                        next project? subaru brz
                        carpc undecided


                        • #13
                          I too reckon check your grounds. Ground drift - where ground is a high resistance path hence causing a voltage drop - is a common damage causer. (Equipment heats first, then blows.)

                          Caps will filter voltage changes. Voltage dips occur due to alternator reaction times or insufficient capacity for surge-current "thumps", or battery voltage drops and cable voltage drops due to thumps.
                          A cap will help retain voltage for a pathetically short time compared to co$t when compared to a battery in the same position.

                          Now apparently big caps are now smaller than two cigarette packets... That's my interpretation from someone that recently said they used a cap because they didn't have space for a battery, and I had said that a 12V-1.2AH battery probably held far more reserve high voltage (ie, above 12.7V) than an 8F and larger cap. And a 12V-1.2AH is about 100x50x55mm (4"x2"x2+") for $20.
                          Mind you, I used to I recommend 12V-7AH AGM batteries for $35 as best [I]small sized[I] bang-for-bucks (100x65x100 =~4x2.5x4") and might even start cars in an emergency. Since then, jumper-pack & buggy 12V-15AH or 18AH batteries may have become the most common.

                          I can understand people not using normal sized AGM batteries due to their size...
                          And batteries should not be permanently connected in parallel in case one fails or acts as a parasitic load, but then its a case of deciding costs versus risks & benefits etc. And caps do fail too (but hopefully not as often).

                          And yes, SPLers usually remove caps because the suppress (filter) voltage peaks in the system. Then again, so too do batteries near the amps...

                          As to the Fluke.... You shouldn't need true RMS - it's DC, not AC. (Even if you have SMPS type loads, normal AC meters should be accurate enough to read the AC voltage.)

                          And if you can interrupt your circuit (battery supply), then the normal DMM 10A range should be fine (rather than DC clamps - which are not as common as AC clamps, and can have high offset or errors at low DC currents).
                          Afterall, I doubt you are leaking a 10A load (like having low-beams on).
                          Just don't turn on the IGN or any loads....


                          • #14
                            Mame sure the sub is wired at the right ohm. My neighbors amp was hot enough to literally fry an egg on and he continuously would go through amps. I went over there, he has speakers everywhere mind you, in the bumper under the car... a real pain for the neighborhood. I should have just let him fry his electrical system. Anyway, dude had all these addition speakers wired in parallel. There was under 1ohm load per channel.


                            • #15
                              Ah. I knew the car was DC. I was under the impression that the true RMS was a DC option. I never read the manual on it.