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I am new to Alfa Romeo with a recenty purchased 1988 Spider Veloce. Struggling to track down a short in the system that is pulling 100 mAmps when everything is turned off. I have Papajam's wiring diagram which will surely be helpful, but could certainly use help from those more familiar with these cable harnesses.
 

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To start with, the prior owner had dropped the central fuzebox from under the dash. From the maintenance manual, it appears that the dash/kneeboard panel should open up and provide better access to the wiring. I can't seem to figure out how to remove this panel and worried that I will break it trying. Is there a trick to this?
 

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Radio station memory is usually less then that but you could try totally disconnecting the radio (if you can track down its always on connection).

A common electrical drain are the interior lights. If you have footwell lamps the lens is also a switch. Rotated one way is 'automatic' (on with doors open), rotated the other way is always on and halfway between is always off. It is common for an errant toe to switch the lamp to always on and it goes unnoticed. The interior lamps are not very bright and are controlled by a timer relay to keep them on for 20 - 30 seconds after closing the door.

Another possibility is the glove box lamp. It is supposed to be switched off when the glove box lid is closed. Supposed to be...

I'm not as familiar with the later Spiders & the knee bolsters. In our '84 the right side of the fuse box has a pivot that fits into a hole in the steering column support bracket and a catch that secures the pivot on the left side.

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if your car has an aftermarket alarm, look at that (I can spot an odd "button" thingy on the fuse box cover in your photo, that looks aftermarket for a start)...they can go bad and drain
100mA is a lot....should be 10-20mA (clock and radio memory)
A bad diode in the alternator can also allow a drain

but, as above, the prime suspect is the footwell lights getting kicked on when leaving the car....you could pull the light timer relay (the big one marked 0679, 3rd along from left) then see if the drain goes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
if your car has an aftermarket alarm, look at that (I can spot an odd "button" thingy on the fuse box cover in your photo, that looks aftermarket for a start)...they can go bad and drain
100mA is a lot....should be 10-20mA (clock and radio memory)
A bad diode in the alternator can also allow a drain

but, as above, the prime suspect is the footwell lights getting kicked on when leaving the car....you could pull the light timer relay (the big one marked 0679, 3rd along from left) then see if the drain goes.
I have been very curious about the odd "button" thingy on the fuse box cover (good description). If I can get the knee bolster to release I definitely plan on tracing this out and will let you know.

I had planned to go fuze by fuze, but hadn't thought about the alternator diode.

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
On the later cars the pivot is attached to the big one piece knee bolster. It swings down with the knee bolster in place.
This is good to know. From some figures I saw I thought that the knee bolster had to be dropped down or removed to store the fuze box. Sounds like I just need to figure out how to swing the fuze box back up under the dash after I finish troubleshooting. Thanks!!
 

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You see the metal handle thing at the "bottom" of the fuse box? There is a soft plastic "hook" mounted up above the brake/clutch pedal levers that catches it and holds it up.

There are two plastic hinges that fit the hinges at each side at the "top" of the box. These snap into square holes in brackets attached to the bolster.

I'll take photos of my car for you this evening.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I have been very curious about the odd "button" thingy on the fuse box cover (good description). If I can get the knee bolster to release I definitely plan on tracing this out and will let you know.

I had planned to go fuze by fuze, but hadn't thought about the alternator diode.

Thanks!
It appears that the odd "button" thingy was intended to be a push button start. Intended to provide a circuit betwen fuze #8 lead (see blue/black wire in brown connector) to the ignition coil, although the wire at the ignition coil was loose with no obvious connection point.
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I thought it was aftermarket, but I have an old wiring harness that was provided by the prior owner that also include the same wire out of the brown connector and another push button. Makes me think it was at least a common modification. Either way, it was very sloppy and I removed it to help troubleshooting.
 

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I'm considering removing the dash so I can fully inspect the wiring, but not sure if I may cause more problems. Anyone tried dash removal?
The dash is not too difficult to remove (only 4 large wing nuts if I recall). I just takes some time because you have to remove the consoles, glove box, instrument cluster monopod and knee bolster(s).
 

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I thought it was aftermarket, but I have an old wiring harness that was provided by the prior owner that also include the same wire out of the brown connector and another push button. Makes me think it was at least a common modification. Either way, it was very sloppy and I removed it to help troubleshooting.
Do you have the shop manual?
Yes. I found a reference to the button in the
The dash is not too difficult to remove (only 4 large wing nuts if I recall). I just takes some time because you have to remove the consoles, glove box, instrument cluster monopod and knee bolster(s).
Good to know. I might give it a try. I have the instructions in the shop manual.
 
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