: Battery Drain - 4 weeks
01-30-05, 11:26 AM
Looks like it took about 4 weeks to drain the battery to the point the starter won't kick in.
With the salt that's put on the roads here, I'll leave the V in the garage from December until April. The battery was okay when I parked the car around Christmas. I tried to start her up yesterday and the battery was dead.
This happened before when I was out of town and didn't use the car for about a month.
01-30-05, 01:06 PM
I leave a battery tender on mine. They are inexpensive and keep the battery fresh. They are low profile too, so you can still close the hood.
01-30-05, 01:35 PM
I also have my V in hibernation for the winter but I did start the car after 5 weeks and it started fine. I would have the dealer check your car out. The battery shouldn't be draining down that fast.
01-30-05, 02:07 PM
Not sure if this is your problem, but I had battery drain problem also and since I started doing two things, I have never had it again.
1. When shut off, do not leave the keys in the ignition, due to parastic drain (very bad). I had a bad habit of doing this, since we have several cars, all of which are in a secure garage. Just seemed easier to leave the keys in the ignition.
2. When you shut the car off, make sure your interior dimmer switch is at the half way mark (or less). If you leave it a 95% or higher, this also creates some sort of mystery drain on the system.
I know number two sounds odd, but there is a known problem with this switch that may, or may not be contributing to your issue. I believe there was a part change on the assembly line in early 2005 production. I intend to swap mine out at some point.
Anyway, since I followed these two steps, no more problems with the battery.
I have left the car for up to 7 days. I got this advice from a very reliable source.
01-30-05, 02:37 PM
Jdodman, where do you live again? Just kidding...
The overhead switch is indeed a problem. Here is link to the TSB about it. There is no fix for this problem right now:
01-30-05, 05:00 PM
I moved the dimmer switch from high just in case but I don't think that's the problem.
The keys stay in the car but not in the ignition.
I just charged the battery, it took about 6 hours on the 20 y.o. K-Mart charger. I'll check again in a couple weeks.
Thanks for the suggestions.
Yesterday, I went to pick up my V at the dealer and refused to give the balance payment until they ordered me a replacement car (V). The battery was dead when I went to look at the car earlier, then when I subsequently went to pay the balance in cash it would not start(same problem). Having read the threads I looked up at the switch problem and checked -it was off. I understand that the remote lock module on some does not turn off after the delay period to run lights ect. The salesman was polite and told me I had no obligation to buy it with a short lapse in trying to start it two times. The remote lock module does not sleep in some. Anyway, I do not believe I should pay for a product production problem. Hopefully, the problem will be reactified by the time by replacement V comes. Another six week wait!
I my foreign cars have cig. lighters that only work when the car is running...not the V. Two weeks and I had a dead battery too.
01-30-05, 10:01 PM
To make the cig lighters work, you need to drop in a relay and move two fuses (one for the front cig and one for the back cig)... Instructions here:
I got the dealer to give me the relay for free. I just said it was missing and there is obviously a spot for it. Now the power goes off a few minutes after I leave the car. Before I did this (last week), I kept my cell phone kit in the car plugged in (its behind the dash) and it was on ALL THE TIME. I had a battery problem once, and it was a result of me messing, not the cig lighter, etc.
I don't have the V - just a regular ole CTS (03). I've had the battery go dead 4 times now. What's more, my father-in-law also has an 03 CTS and has had the battery go dead 3 times. We both have had the car to the dealer (different states).
I had been playing with the settings for 30 minutes or so and I figured maybe I just taxed the system too heavily. But I've even left headlights on longer than that in other cars and the battery could take it. The dealer said that the charging system etc. checked out okay. When the battery went dead again, I decided to just replace the battery to eliminate the hassle and lack of confidence. Took the dead battery to Sears and they said that the battery checked out fine - just discharged. Sears charged it up and it started the car fine. It since has discharged two additional times, both times after the trunk was left open for 30 minutes or so.
My FIL is less patient than I, and called the dealership after his battery discharged the first time. He thought that he had an electrical problem because the analog clock ran backwards rapidly for a couple of minutes just after he tried to start the car. The dealership towed it and kept it for several days and couldnít find anything wrong. The most recent time for him was in my front yard as he was loading his trunk after a Christmas visit. He is retired with no reason to return home immediately so I convinced him to stay and take it to my local dealer, who I have plenty of confidence in and who has diagnosed some difficult problems in the past. The service department kept the car overnight and claims (I believe them) that they put instrumentation on every circuit and couldnít find any problems. They did say that the positive cable was a little loose.
Based on information found on this site, I located and printed the TSB about the dimmer switch. I figured that this may be the problem so I mailed the TSB to my FiL and placed mine mid-way since I do tend to drive with the dash lights bright. I also alerted my service rep to the TSB.
Since my most recent occurrence was when the dimmer switch was mid-way and after the trunk was open for 20 minutes or so, and so was my FiLís, Iím now wondering if there is a correlation with the trunk being open, even though the light goes off after a while (presumably to prevent battery drain). I plan to do a trial by leaving the trunk open sometime when we donít need the car for a day or so (I have only a trickle-charger). However, this seems to be such a real problem for 2 of us I canít believe that it is just a coincidence. So Iíve returned to this forum once again for clues. This is the closest thread that my search found to my (our) problem.
The only other "strangeness" to this problem is that when the battery goes bad, the starter doesnít even engage. My experience with previous vehicles is that a dead, or more accurately "dying" battery will turn the starter very slowly with that growning sound or at least click like the solenoid is trying to kick in. Neither cars in question do that. Also, Iíve noticed that when the battery is okay, there is a fraction of a second lag between maxing the key position to the start position and the starter engaging - almost like it is doing a quick check that systems are "go" before it engages the starter. This may be partially imagination, but I never have had the starter sound "weak." Itís either all or nothing.
Iíll continue to troubleshoot this on my own, but decided to post here in case any one else is experiencing or has experienced the same problem.
Again, it seems unlikely that we are the only 2 individuals with this recurring problem.