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Battery Problems (again?)

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Bassoon, Nov 14, 2017.

  1. Bassoon

    Bassoon Copenworld Newbie

    Joined:
    May 3, 2017
    Location:
    Oxfordshire
    Car(s):
    Daihatsu Copen 1.3
    Hyundai i30
    Hyundai i40
    Hi, I've driven my 09 1.3 a fair bit recently. I had to go abroad for a fortnight (without the Copen), on return the battery was flat - the battery is brand new.
    This is the second time it has flattened after a short period of no use.
    I've heard rumors about this with the Copen - what is the answer? Is it that useless, time wasting, Cobra alarm they fitted?

    If so, can I disconnect it?
     
  2. BarnsleyRob

    BarnsleyRob Copenworld Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2017
    Location:
    South Yorks
    Car(s):
    2009/59 silver Copen 1298 cc (now gone to a new home)
    I don’t think it’s a DIY job due to the connections to the door locks, boot, and EFI.

    Mine’s also still discharging, despite a 2 week old battery, at around 0.3V per day so it doesn’t take long before it won’t start. I’ve had 2 autoelectrians look at it now and can’t see an abnormal demand when it’s all off so it’s largely down to the battery condition and capacity.
     
  3. welz

    welz Copenworld Regular

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2015
    Location:
    Leverkusen, Germany
    Car(s):
    copen 2003
  4. Sandie

    Sandie Copenworld Newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2017
    Location:
    Wirksworth, Derbyshire
    Car(s):
    Copen 1.3 2008
    I am also new to Copen ownership. The nasty Halfords battery that was fitted went flat a couple of times for no apparent reason. As I had only had the car a couple of months and the previous owner hadn't used it much, I assumed the battery had died through repeated discharge, so I replaced it with a Varta 40 Ah battery in April. All seemed well until I left it unused for two weeks this month, to find it wouldn't start. I know I need to start looking for the cause, but experience with a previous car suggests this can be a lengthy and frustrating process. So, I'd also be interested in any pointers, too. I identified the problem on my other car to the alarm system. It was old and the electronics were just breaking down and causing all sorts of odd things to happen. Although I identified the problem, I had to pay an auto electrician to strip the alarm out because, as BarnsleyBob says, it was linked in to all sorts of things. Auto electricians are not cheap!
     
  5. BarnsleyRob

    BarnsleyRob Copenworld Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2017
    Location:
    South Yorks
    Car(s):
    2009/59 silver Copen 1298 cc (now gone to a new home)
    It seems that there are a number of us with the 1.3’s and Cobra alarm vehicles that are suffering from this problem. I’ve put some of my observations on another related thread but having being assured it was the alternator not keeping pace with the demand and wasting £300 on buying/fitting a new one, I’d advise not to go down that route. I only fell for that diagnosis (made in good faith incidentally) because of a screeching noise that had also been blamed on the alternator bearings.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Charger-Di...&sr=8-39&keywords=car+voltage+and+usb+charger

    firstly, get one of these to plug in your cigarette lighter and make sure you’re battery is charging when you drive it. You should see 14.3 ish volts with normal daytime driving. It may drop to 14V with lights, A/C, and demister on. This shows the alternator is charging the battery, albeit it doesn’t confirm the correct amperage.

    Then it’s a case of checking the voltage over a few days before/without starting it. You should expect to see around 12.5 V after around 12-24 hours. Don’t be alarmed when you first stop driving and the voltage reads around 13V then starts dropping quickly as it’s the excess charge dissipating.

    After that you can try stuff like locking the car using the key (which deactivates the Cobra unit but didn’t make any difference on my discharge rate), then maybe isolating fuses for any after market kit such as DRLs.

    If you’re lucky, something will show up but if not, Plan B is to disconnect the battery terminal if you know you’re going to be off the road for a while.

    I wouldn’t necessarily advocate leaving the battery on trickle charge as mine had a physical fault that could have caused a fire in those circumstances and neither the smart charger or initial auto electricians check identified it.

    Hope this helps, or at least saves some money.
     
  6. Number6

    Number6 Copenworld Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2013
    Location:
    Dublin
    Car(s):
    2005 0.7L Copen
    For what it's worth, I replaced the battery on my Copen twice. Now I take the battery out of the car and put it on a charger when I'm not using her. She looks to be drawing 3mW for me parasitic
     
  7. shane

    shane Copenworld Regular

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2016
    Location:
    Devon
    Car(s):
    Daihatsu Copen 0.66
    I have a turbo Copen without alarm - it still starts after 5 weeks of not being used. There has to be something going on here somewhere. The battery should last longer than 2 weeks.
     
  8. BarnsleyRob

    BarnsleyRob Copenworld Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2017
    Location:
    South Yorks
    Car(s):
    2009/59 silver Copen 1298 cc (now gone to a new home)
    The last, and most competent, auto electrician estimated 4 weeks before the battery dropped below starting power. I haven’t let mine run down to that point yet but I’m seeing 12.2 V after 3-4 days.

    The Cobra must take a fair slice as it’s running a radio receiver for the remote signal. The radio also uses some power to maintain the settings although I reckon a CR3032 button cell battery could maintain that for several months.

    My solution so far has been to drive it like I stole it every couple of days and leave a relatively pristine BMW in the garage for weeks on end :)
     
  9. welz

    welz Copenworld Regular

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2015
    Location:
    Leverkusen, Germany
    Car(s):
    copen 2003
    how much is the parasitic current in standby? Over 30mA after 10 minutes ? Its easy to check with a multimeter. All others speculation are rubbish. After 10 minutes airbag and doors goes to sleep . see my link above..
    Remove + cable from battery . + from multimeter on it ( multimeter before on max A) negative from it to cable + battery .

    check the current ..door closed . must be so 30mA to 50mA. if not check radio fuse.

    does you have a aftermarket radio?

    how much is your parasitic current after 15 minutes in standby?
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2017
  10. BarnsleyRob

    BarnsleyRob Copenworld Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2017
    Location:
    South Yorks
    Car(s):
    2009/59 silver Copen 1298 cc (now gone to a new home)
    @welz

    Mine is less than 30mA according to the autoelectricians and I’m on the standard Clarion stereo.

    I noticed a couple of months ago that the alarm went off every now and then which is a sure fire sign of the battery failing but didn’t take my own advice hence the alternator swap.

    I’ll have a look again on Tuesday to see what the standing voltage is. I haven’t driven it since Wednesday so it’ll be a reasonable test.
     

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