: New Owner Electrical Issue- Return car or not?



KnickKnackCadillac
06-10-13, 10:53 AM
Hi all,

About two and a half months ago I purchased a 4 door black on black CTS and it's loaded (it's a PDQ according to the options codes if anyone is even remotely familiar). I absolutely love it, however, I've been having issues with it and it has been in service for over a month of the time that I've owned it. The issue is it just randomly dies overnight while in my garage. It occurs once, maybe twice in a given week and has only happened when it's garaged, although, it has only spent a few nights out of the garage. The dealer that I got it from has sent it back to the Caddy dealership, and they cannot seem to pinpoint the cause of the problem. The keys are definitely not talking to the car while it's garaged, and they have already replaced the AC control unit and the radio.

At this point they are talking about buying it back from me, but I don't want to do that, because I truly like the car, not to mention I won't be able to find anything with the amount of options within that price range- that car was a steal. At the same time, I can't wake up to a dead car in the mornings, because it has already caused me to be late to several things, including work. I was just wondering if anyone has had any similar experience, or could maybe offer just a little two cents. I pick up my car today, and they have "options" for me, but I imagine the biggest one will be to get me out of the car and into something else, but frankly, I'm have fallen in love with the Caddy and don't want something else. Please, I'd like to hear what others have to say. Thanks!


~Chris

C "T" ess
06-10-13, 10:57 AM
If they'll give you all of your money back; put it in your pocket and run. There are a lot of nice CTS' out there but a headache now will always be a headache. Maybe there is a reason you got such a good deal in the first place.

KnickKnackCadillac
06-10-13, 11:03 AM
Good point about a headache now always being one. The dealership I got it from is above board, though, and I've even seen the service history for this car, because I know someone that has access to that info. From the service history through Cadillac, this problem was never raised and the vehicle was well maintained. At the same time your first point is spot on...

C "T" ess lol. I love the name, btw.

tinman
06-10-13, 11:35 AM
Bail.

This could easily be a lifetime issue. Electrical issues are a pain and are difficult to run down.

Take the money and run. There are others.

The_Judge
06-10-13, 12:09 PM
If you have keyless ignition, be sure you're not leaving the starter switch in the accessory position (one click to the right from "off").

Per the owner's manual, "The battery could be drained if you leave the key in the ACC/ACCESSORY or ON/RUN position with the engine off. You may not be able to start your vehicle if the battery is allowed to drain for an extended period of time."

p.s. -- I learned this the hard way.

MaxBuck
06-10-13, 02:31 PM
This could easily be a lifetime issue. Electrical issues are a pain and are difficult to run down. Word. I recall that the famous British automotive electrical systems company was referred to by MG owners as, "Lucas, Prince of Darkness."

tinman
06-10-13, 02:56 PM
Listen, I owned an MGB. Whaddya wanna know about Lucas? Why do the British drink warm beer? Because Lucas made the refrigerators. :thehand:

MaxBuck
06-10-13, 04:42 PM
Listen, I owned an MGB. Whaddya wanna know about Lucas? Why do the British drink warm beer? Because Lucas made the refrigerators. :thehand:115241

Cadillac Cust Svc
06-10-13, 05:24 PM
Hi all,

About two and a half months ago I purchased a 4 door black on black CTS and it's loaded (it's a PDQ according to the options codes if anyone is even remotely familiar). I absolutely love it, however, I've been having issues with it and it has been in service for over a month of the time that I've owned it. The issue is it just randomly dies overnight while in my garage. It occurs once, maybe twice in a given week and has only happened when it's garaged, although, it has only spent a few nights out of the garage. The dealer that I got it from has sent it back to the Caddy dealership, and they cannot seem to pinpoint the cause of the problem. The keys are definitely not talking to the car while it's garaged, and they have already replaced the AC control unit and the radio.

At this point they are talking about buying it back from me, but I don't want to do that, because I truly like the car, not to mention I won't be able to find anything with the amount of options within that price range- that car was a steal. At the same time, I can't wake up to a dead car in the mornings, because it has already caused me to be late to several things, including work. I was just wondering if anyone has had any similar experience, or could maybe offer just a little two cents. I pick up my car today, and they have "options" for me, but I imagine the biggest one will be to get me out of the car and into something else, but frankly, I'm have fallen in love with the Caddy and don't want something else. Please, I'd like to hear what others have to say. Thanks!


~Chris

Hello Chris,

I am sorry to hear your vehicle has been in service for that long and you are dealing with these issues. However, I am happy you seem to have fallen in love with your Caddy and love the vehicle regardless. I would be in the same position as you under these circumstances and reach out to hear advice from others also. I do see forum members reached out to you and offered their insight of the situation. Let me know how everything goes and if you would like to further discuss anything, please private message me.

Regards,

Laura M.
Cadillac Customer Service

RAB
06-10-13, 05:37 PM
KnickKnackCadillac, is it possible the radio is sometimes staying on when you exit the car after turning off the engine? This problem has occurred with several forum members, particularly on 08-09 cars. The issue is almost always related to a defective [driver door] door latch switch (aka door ajar switch). If the switch doesn't activate sometimes on exiting the car the radio/audio system will stay on, draining your battery. On that subject, what is the condition of the battery? Has the dealer checked that out? A sneak current could be draining your battery. In the CTS service manual there's an instruction on what items to check out (see post #13 below). The dealer's service dept should be able to carry out necessary diagnostics very easily. If you really like your car I wouldn't give up on it quite so fast - give them a chance to fix the problem.

KnickKnackCadillac
06-10-13, 08:02 PM
Unfortunately, I am not leaving it in accessory mode. I wish that really was the case, because that would make solving this way easier!

----------


KnickKnackCadillac, is it possible the radio is sometimes staying on when you exit the car after turning off the engine? This problem has occurred with several forum members, particularly on 08-09 cars. The issue is almost always related to a defective [driver door] door latch switch (aka door ajar switch). If the switch doesn't activate sometimes on exiting the car the radio/audio system will stay on, draining your battery. On that subject, what is the condition of the battery? Has the dealer checked that out? A sneak current could be draining your battery. In the CTS service manual there's an in-depth instruction on how to detect and rectify this issue (I'll post the text here later today). The dealer's service dept should be able to carry that out very easily. If you really like your car I wouldn't give up on it quite so fast - give them a chance to fix the problem.

The dealer replaced the radio, but I wasn't aware of that issue. I'm going to bring that up with the service adviser. Thanks.

hauler
06-11-13, 01:27 PM
Knickknack, if it were me, I'd have to give it back or buy a second car again. That said, I have seen posts on the corvette forums by owners who can't leave cars in airport parking lots for more than a day without needing help, and the first time my daughter left her one week old 2013 Honda civic in an airport lot, it also had a dead battery. Welcome to the world of computerized cars, and best of luck to you.

BTW, I was happy to notice as I had the doors open while making a hard connection for my radar detector, that the dash had a message saying "Battery saver engaged". Maybe your saver function is dead or disabled.

RAB
06-11-13, 05:50 PM
FYI - Battery drain diagnostics info:

Service Information
2009 Cadillac CTS | CTS VIN D Service Manual
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

#PIC5454A: Additional Battery Drain Diagnostics - (Apr 19, 2012)

Subject: Additional Battery Drain Diagnostics

Models: 2008 - 2013 Cadillac CTS Coupe Sedan And Wagon

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This PI was superseded to update model and model years. Please discard PIC5454.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The following diagnosis might be helpful if the vehicle exhibits the symptom(s) described in this PI.

Condition/Concern:
A customer may comment that the battery goes dead intermittently.

Recommendation/Instructions:
After further diagnostics it may be found that the battery draw cannot be duplicated. There are several known areas that may cause a battery draw on a CTS. Please check the following areas for any concerns.

 1. Overhead console light switch
 2. Door Handle Micro Switches/Touchpads
 3. Radio
 4. Trunk/Liftgate Touch Pad corroded from water intrusion
 5. Inadvertent power ckt (wires pinched by sunvisors)
 6. Seat Switches sticking
 7. Window Switches sticking (Drivers Door Switch, Passenger Door Switch)
 8. Memory Seat switch circuit board solder splatter
 9. Aftermarket accessories installed (or were installed at time of the battery drain - be sure to ask customer if a phone, MP3 player, etc. may have been installed when the issue occurred)
10. Check engine wiring harness located on the right side cylinder head from front to back for possible multiple short locations
11. Gen 8 OnStar module (see bulletin #09-08-46-004B)
12. Review latest version of PI0412 (No Crank No Start Dead Battery Due to Parasitic Drain Discharge) *** 2011 Model Years Only ***
13. Review latest version of PIC4935 (OnStar Power Consumption)
If all recommendations above do not indicate a possible concern then check the afterblow option using the Tech 2 to see if it is turned on, If customer agrees please turn the afterblow off and let the customer evaluate the vehicle for a draw.

Tbbt
06-11-13, 06:40 PM
RAB,

Thanks! I'll print this off and put it in my CTS file!

Marv

jbdrags
06-11-13, 08:45 PM
Good luck trying to get them to buy it back. I have been fighting for them to buy back my Lemon and the only offer they gave me was to do a Lease swap which means they buy out my lease as long as I agree to get a new Cadillac lease. I would lose all my incentives that are no longer available, lose my down payment, and be forced to extend the lease. Pretty crappy customer service.

Tbbt
06-11-13, 08:57 PM
Good luck trying to get them to buy it back. I have been fighting for them to buy back my Lemon and the only offer they gave me was to do a Lease swap which means they buy out my lease as long as I agree to get a new Cadillac lease. I would lose all my incentives that are no longer available, lose my down payment, and be forced to extend the lease. Pretty crappy customer service.

Great, another hoser!

jbdrags
06-11-13, 09:55 PM
Great, another hoser!

Good luck when this happens to you.

tinman
06-12-13, 01:21 PM
jbdrags, maybe nobody understands your frustration on this forum better than me. But to spew forth bad karma isn't going to get you anywhere. I do understand as my car is in the shop for a second transmission rebuild 2 days after I got it back from my first transmission rebuild. All we are saying is give peace a chance.

KnickKnackCadillac
06-25-13, 12:04 PM
FYI - Battery drain diagnostics info:

Service Information
2009 Cadillac CTS | CTS VIN D Service Manual
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

#PIC5454A: Additional Battery Drain Diagnostics - (Apr 19, 2012)

Subject: Additional Battery Drain Diagnostics

Models: 2008 - 2013 Cadillac CTS Coupe Sedan And Wagon

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This PI was superseded to update model and model years. Please discard PIC5454.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The following diagnosis might be helpful if the vehicle exhibits the symptom(s) described in this PI.

Condition/Concern:
A customer may comment that the battery goes dead intermittently.

Recommendation/Instructions:
After further diagnostics it may be found that the battery draw cannot be duplicated. There are several known areas that may cause a battery draw on a CTS. Please check the following areas for any concerns.

 1. Overhead console light switch
 2. Door Handle Micro Switches/Touchpads
 3. Radio
 4. Trunk/Liftgate Touch Pad corroded from water intrusion
 5. Inadvertent power ckt (wires pinched by sunvisors)
 6. Seat Switches sticking
 7. Window Switches sticking (Drivers Door Switch, Passenger Door Switch)
 8. Memory Seat switch circuit board solder splatter
 9. Aftermarket accessories installed (or were installed at time of the battery drain - be sure to ask customer if a phone, MP3 player, etc. may have been installed when the issue occurred)
10. Check engine wiring harness located on the right side cylinder head from front to back for possible multiple short locations
11. Gen 8 OnStar module (see bulletin #09-08-46-004B)
12. Review latest version of PI0412 (No Crank No Start Dead Battery Due to Parasitic Drain Discharge) *** 2011 Model Years Only ***
13. Review latest version of PIC4935 (OnStar Power Consumption)
If all recommendations above do not indicate a possible concern then check the afterblow option using the Tech 2 to see if it is turned on, If customer agrees please turn the afterblow off and let the customer evaluate the vehicle for a draw.


I will also put this in my file. Thanks!

tinman
06-25-13, 12:12 PM
Me too! I keep a CTS Knowledgebase.

C "T" ess
06-26-13, 01:39 PM
It sounds like the number one thing I would check is the Radar Detector hard wire connection. If you didn't tap into a switched power source (power is only present when the engine is running or controlled by the key) You are getting a parasitic drain right there. The hot wire must lose power when the car is turned off. Perhaps your problem predated the installation. For awhile when I was active on the Corvette forum, I manufactured an in-line connector that got it's from a switched source. I hope this is the simple answer that solves your problem. If not the previous post before yours covering the same topic turned out to be a chafed wire to the BCM, and another said a defective power seat motor was their cause.