Electrical issues

cugardan

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#1
thatsucks.jpg Hello,

Just wondering if you all have any electrical issues you have come across with your C3 and to share the issue and solution if you have one.

My current issue - Car was driven to a car show last September (72 BB) drove great no issues, went to leave, turned key "mrrp" nothing, tried again, same result. Next thing I know battery is dead. After countless attempts to boost it, the negative cable was getting pretty hot, so decided to tow it home.

Assumed issue - bad ground. Have not had a chance yet this year to dig into it and car is now buried in the garage. Taking it out June 2nd to see if I can figure it out. Will update when I get it fixed, but this made me wonder what other issues people have had, and a search yielded little.

Thanks!
 

nascar03

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#2
I'm thinking that you had out in the rain!!

Graham
 

Black 03 Z06

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#3
I am wondering if it could be a bad battery. It is possible that a battery cannot actually take a boost if it is damaged internally.

Have it tested before spending a significant amount of time looking for the problem.

Good luck, electrical issues can be frustrating. Or Graham could be spot on, damn rain. :thumbs:
 
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cugardan

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#4
Yeah....when the car show ended a bunch of guys stuck around for 2 hours trying to help from the mustang club. then it POURED.
 

Jeremiad

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#5
The hot cable would be an indication that it is a grounding issue. The heat that you feel is resistance, usually caused by the power not being able to flow properly to ground. It could be a dirty ground connection, or it could be just old cables with breaks and oxidation causing poor electrical flow.

I had a similar problem in my Capri RS many years ago. It was December, so it was pretty cold. The car would start fine being dead cold, and when I got to town and parked it, it would not start again. Barely turned over. Wouldn't do anything different on a boost, either. I replaced the battery, still the same. Took it to a shop. They replaced the battery (again), and the problem remained. They replaced the starter, same thing. Alternator, same thing. starter relay (old Ford, separate from the starter), same deal. I was very frustrated with it as I had spent a lot of money with a shop and they couldn't figure out the problem. Sitting at Canadian Tire trying to figure it out after having the same problem after picking it up from the shop, I touched the positive cable from the battery to the solenoid and damn near burned myself. It was so hot that the plastic was sticking to my skin. ouch.

The stock cables were a 6 or 8 gauge, just a silly little cable. I bought new 2 gauge cables and replaced battery to relay, relay to starter, and battery to ground. Bingo! Turned over so fast I thought the car might flip over on its roof!

The cables are the cheapest thing to replace, and make sure you clean the terminals and ground point to ensure a good connection. I bet it solves your problem.
 
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cugardan

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#6
wanted to update....turns out it was the starter...again....that makes 4 AC Delco starters in 4 years. Anyone else have similar issues?
 

Black 03 Z06

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#7
That has to hurt the budget. Hopefully it is now sorted out and away you go.

Thanks for the update.
 
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#8
Hi.. I have run into starters with substandard housings that don't have enough clearance between the ring gear and the pinion when engaged(need to be shimmed). The starters don't last long like that. Usually the starter sounds like it is laboring a little when cranking and eventually cooks the brushes or in extreme cases breaks the nose cone on the starter.
 

san

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#9
View attachment 8723 Hello,

Just wondering if you all have any electrical issues you have come across with your C3 and to share the issue and solution if you have one.

My current issue - Car was driven to a car show last September (72 BB) drove great no issues, went to leave, turned key "mrrp" nothing, tried again, same result. Next thing I know battery is dead. After countless attempts to boost it, the negative cable was getting pretty hot, so decided to tow it home.

Assumed issue - bad ground. Have not had a chance yet this year to dig into it and car is now buried in the garage. Taking it out June 2nd to see if I can figure it out. Will update when I get it fixed, but this made me wonder what other issues people have had, and a search yielded little.

Thanks!
Ihavent read entire post but let me give you anothers insight....this ground cable started my car still...and would actually loose power all together while trying to start....then boom.... Power came back on...this is by far the worst piece on c3's...they jacket on cable holds water and corrode like crazy...mine fell apart eventually...cost me 12 bucks from canadian tire for a simple fix...i have had all kinds of electrical problems and fixed them all. Just takes time and patience. Im not saying that your problem is ground cable..but if it got hot...mine did too...it likely needs a fresh cable anyways. Good luck!!
 

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san

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#10
wanted to update....turns out it was the starter...again....that makes 4 AC Delco starters in 4 years. Anyone else have similar issues?
Well i guess i should have read the whole post then...sorry about that. My advice is replace ground cable anyways. Even new originals are cheap...and they wprk for years even in a high resistive state. Your starter however is not quite so easy...as mentioned above..make sure its shimmed properly..another thing i have to do to mine...blah....also..if you are running headers it could be a heat issue as well.
 

san

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#11
Another thing that is hard on starters is if timing is off and starter keeps kicling back.....i know there are other things that cause problems too...just cant think of any right now....fwiw ive had more bad starters than good!!! Just kidding. Whats happening to starters when they die?? Any ideas? Did you open one up?? Is it the windings that fail or solenoid??
 

taylorsk8

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#12
I realize it isn't the ground but I 1+ changing those cables anyway if you have never done it. My issue was the one from the frame to the engine block. Fixed all my groaning start issues.

T
 

Bb72

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#13
Keep in mind that a bad ground will make you go through starters because of the high current.