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Battery ran down on me twice. New battery, rebuilt alternator and voltage regulator.

I think the problem was with the footlights staying on overnight. They are the kind where the entire light is a three-way toggle switch and they are kind of stiff. Lubed the pivot and cleaned the contacts on the footlights and recharged the battery.

Today after the night in the garage I drove the car to the bank. Started right up. Went through one of those auto tellers and while the car was idling the "check engine" light flashed on. WhatTF? Tapped the accelerator and it went away. Never did that before.

So when I got home, I checked the voltage at the battery: 12.5-13v. Seemed OK but I pulled a few fuses anyway to see if it went up on with any circuit open since I am not sure if the footlight was really the problem. Nope—all good. But of course, while I am under there, the stupid fuse box dropped off it hinges again so I had to fish around under the dash (no easy trick in an S4) to put it back in.

While I was down there up to my elbows, I notice a fuse I had never seen before, just hanging there by two red and white wires, hiding behind the fuse box. Has a little metal flange that looks like it should be fastened to something but isn't, and a 20 amp fuse in it.

Anyone know what this fuse might be? Could be something added when I had an Alpine Bluetooth radio installed last winter. But 20 amps?

Not sure if I have the battery drain problem solved but I think so. I have NO idea what the check engine light at idle was. If it comes back, I guess I'll have pull some codes.
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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I think that's the inline fuse for the A/C blower. I know it's supposed to be somewhere behind the fusebox. Pull it and see if the A/C fan stops working :D

The kick lights are notorious for causing run down batteries. You can modify them to remove the "always on" capability. They'll still work with the doors but if you knock them with your knee they won't stay on. IIRC you just need to pull out each lamp assembly and remove the black ground wire from the terminal at the lamps.

If you do a search you can find instructions pull codes and find out what the check engine light was.
 

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yes, Gubi has it right.
aircon fan switch, which has a separate 20A inline fuse and red/white wire.
relevant wiring page here:
 

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The kick lights are notorious for causing run down batteries. You can modify them to remove the "always on" capability.
Gubi,

You had made the same observation when I was having battery issues. I looked around and couldn't find the door lights. Is it possible that some cars didn't have them? Where, exactly, would they be?

Larry
 

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The way we fixed the interior lights at the dealer back in the day was to take them out and hot glue them on the inside in the auto position.
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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Gubi,

You had made the same observation when I was having battery issues. I looked around and couldn't find the door lights. Is it possible that some cars didn't have them? Where, exactly, would they be?

Larry
Directly forward of the middle of each seat, in the underside of the knee bolster.
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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The way we fixed the interior lights at the dealer back in the day was to take them out and hot glue them on the inside in the auto position.
That'll work too, though just disconnecting the black wire is probably easier.

The other thing I did was put in LED bulbs in those lamps. They don't have a timer to turn them off after a set time, so if you don't fully shut the door they can drain the battery overnight. LEDs draw a lot less current and will go for days.
 

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Directly forward of the middle of each seat, in the underside of the knee bolster.
Son of a gun....they are there. Well, neither work so I assume the bulbs are out. I pressed them both. They toggle left , right, center. I moved to center which is assume is off.

I guess I'll get under there and see if I can remove the lens to get to the bulb. LED is the smart choice. A little more $ but worth it.
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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Center is "on with doors open".

If they're both out it's also possible someone might have pulled the relay from the fusebox? Should be top row, third from the left.
 

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That'll work too, though just disconnecting the black wire is probably easier.

The other thing I did was put in LED bulbs in those lamps. They don't have a timer to turn them off after a set time, so if you don't fully shut the door they can drain the battery overnight. LEDs draw a lot less current and will go for days.
By gluing them in the center position they work with the door open and your knee or foot can't easily kick them in the on all the time position.
 
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