Battery Drain Issue

Joined
Sep 22, 2016
Messages
2
Location
Oregon
A company installed a new stereo, amp and speakers in my cruiser and now my cruiser is dead within a day or two. I took it back several times and they blamed it on everything else but the stereo (of course). I took it to a Landcruiser business a couple times and they said they fixed it only to find that a day or two later it was dead again. Every time I drop it off with them its gone for at least 6-12 months so I'd like to not go that route again. I stopped in at a local oil change place and they said, "you've got a battery draw even when the cruiser is off and key is out". Can someone give me some things to try so that I can track this issue down and fix it? I'm not very good with electrical or mechanical stuff but I dont know what else to do. Thanks in advance.
 

OSS

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Joined
Jun 30, 2017
Messages
4,528
Location
Oblivion
Start at square one where the problem began - the new radio.

Unplug it and the amp and see what happens.
As you know, the FJ60 doesn’t have an engine ECU so typically there is zero parasitic battery drain.
 

CruiserTrash

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Joined
Jul 15, 2020
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710
Location
Denver
1. Buy a cheap multimeter from Harbor Freight, Home Depot, or elsewhere ($10).
2. With the truck off and the key out of the ignition disconnect the positive terminal from the positive stud on the battery. Do not touch the body of the truck while doing this (second hand in back pocket is a good way to stay safe). Whatever tool used to remove the terminal from the stud, don't let it contact anything else especially the bodywork.
3. Set multimeter to milliAmps (mA). Wear shoes with rubber soles.
4. Touch one lead (probe) to the positive terminal and the other to the positive stud on the battery. Don't touch the leads to anything else.
5. What does the multimeter say? It sounds like you'll be seeing some value greater than zero.

6. Now start unplugging fuses one by one and see if the multimeter mA reading drops.
7. I'd start with whatever fuse they spliced into for the radio.
8. If that doesn't do it, replace the fuse, pull a different one, check mA again.
9. Hopefully one particular fuse drops mA to zero, meaning that one circuit is fully responsible for the battery drain when the truck is off.

There's a chance the stereo installers got crazy with the wiring and did something chintzy like an inline fuse. This would make things harder to trace but not impossible. Anyway, report back with results.
 
Joined
Sep 22, 2016
Messages
2
Location
Oregon
1. Buy a cheap multimeter from Harbor Freight, Home Depot, or elsewhere ($10).
2. With the truck off and the key out of the ignition disconnect the positive terminal from the positive stud on the battery. Do not touch the body of the truck while doing this (second hand in back pocket is a good way to stay safe). Whatever tool used to remove the terminal from the stud, don't let it contact anything else especially the bodywork.
3. Set multimeter to milliAmps (mA). Wear shoes with rubber soles.
4. Touch one lead (probe) to the positive terminal and the other to the positive stud on the battery. Don't touch the leads to anything else.
5. What does the multimeter say? It sounds like you'll be seeing some value greater than zero.

6. Now start unplugging fuses one by one and see if the multimeter mA reading drops.
7. I'd start with whatever fuse they spliced into for the radio.
8. If that doesn't do it, replace the fuse, pull a different one, check mA again.
9. Hopefully one particular fuse drops mA to zero, meaning that one circuit is fully responsible for the battery drain when the truck is off.

There's a chance the stereo installers got crazy with the wiring and did something chintzy like an inline fuse. This would make things harder to trace but not impossible. Anyway, report back with results.
Thank you for the quick response! I have a multimeter so i will give this a shot tonight.
 
Joined
Jun 23, 2022
Messages
1
Location
New York
Even if you are not using your phone, there are certain processes running in the background that slowly drain its battery, which is normal. Also, if your phone's battery has become old and worn out, it is likely to drain faster
 

mongoose2231

Supporting Vendor
Joined
Dec 23, 2011
Messages
2,838
Location
Orange County, NY
Anything below .5a should be fine in any vehicle. Anything over, kills the battery. My cressida has the radio memory and the clock drawing .53 and kills the battery in about two week's time. I keep it on a tender. Now, I'd start with the radio circuit. That constant for memory and all the good stuff takes some draw but shouldn't kill the battery in a day. Try singling out the circuits that draw amps per above instructions. Let us know what you find. I added an FJ cruiser stereo to my 86 pickup (had one laying around) and the constant on that started killing my battery. Since then, I have installed a simple switch on the constant and I cut the power when parked. Never had a problem again. The issue though is your stereo will have no memory.
 
Joined
May 28, 2017
Messages
1,030
Location
in the woods
Anything below .5a should be fine in any vehicle. Anything over, kills the battery. My cressida has the radio memory and the clock drawing .53 and kills the battery in about two week's time. I keep it on a tender. Now, I'd start with the radio circuit. That constant for memory and all the good stuff takes some draw but shouldn't kill the battery in a day. Try singling out the circuits that draw amps per above instructions. Let us know what you find. I added an FJ cruiser stereo to my 86 pickup (had one laying around) and the constant on that started killing my battery. Since then, I have installed a simple switch on the constant and I cut the power when parked. Never had a problem again. The issue though is your stereo will have no memory.
my stereo losing memory wouldn't bother me, it's my memory that concerns me :meh: there's no battery that'll help that:hillbilly:
 

Gretsch

SILVER Star
Joined
Apr 3, 2017
Messages
1,860
Location
Plano Texas
Even if you are not using your phone, there are certain processes running in the background that slowly drain its battery, which is normal. Also, if your phone's battery has become old and worn out, it is likely to drain faster

What on earth........how did this get in here.

I think you want


Start at square one where the problem began - the new radio.

Do the drain test with the multi-meter. It will likely lead to the radio. Pull that fuse first. Or just take her back and while you wait have them undo whatever evil they did. Don't stand for clown college cruiser work. GL.
 
Joined
May 15, 2003
Messages
1,257
Location
Lafayette, CO
All the above. Check radio first.

if that’s not it check the dome circuit next. In addition to the dome lights, the carb fan is part of that circuit. Ive seen funky draws from a faulty fan relay.

Set up to test for that parasite draw, no key in ignition of off, pull the dome fuse, see if it goes away. Then replace the fuse, turn key to ‘on’. See what happens. If the draw is magically back. Check the carb fan relay box. I think it’s in PS kick panel.

The above scenario is my 60. Took me like 4 hours to find. Now I just remove/replace the fuse to trick the relay to totally disconnect
 

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