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Discussion Starter #1
The battery in my 85 spider graduate drains when the car is off. I don't know if this is related to why the engine idles erratically and hesitates so I am posting as a separate issue.

With all the fuses removed and the key out of the ignition, when I connect the positive wire to the batter terminal there is a visible and audible spark. Current draw is a constant .15A. Which seems excessive to me. The only way so far I have found to connect the battery without the drain is to disconnect the ECU harness.

I'm at a loss as to how I should proceed from here in locating the short. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
 

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1966-2013
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Any reason to think that mabe the main cable that goes through the trunk got chaffed or crushed and now has a small 'leak' in it?

It's not just a main battery cable, it has a piggyback that goes into the ECU compartment along the edge of the trunk and through a grommet that service the two relays that are under there.

The rough running may be of interest though, onnaconna if the ECU has an actual problem (really, really rare) that itself 'could' be the cause of both issues.

Have you seen the L-jetronic diagnostics page as linked in my signature block?
It'll take you a LONG ways toward diagnosing problems with the system like that rough running. Or at least help test everything up to the ECU.

In any event, your other thread should get those sort of things covered, but with battery disconnected do check for continuity on the red wire between the small relay terminal #30 and ground and the red on the large relay terminal #30 (it has an 8A fuse in it right nearby) and ground onnaconna those are the ones that go directly to the battery + terminal.

Then you can go so far as to check the small relay (it powers the injectors) like any other conventional relay for function or shorts. If you need to swap one in, make sure its one that has two 87 terminals on it, not an 87 and 87a, or 87b or other such combination. (if you have AC, one of the relays on the inner right fender should be the right type, but confirm visually before sticking it in there)

The bigger relay is tachymetric (it runs the fuel pumps and activates the small relay) and pretty well difficult to test without specialty equiptment, but too expensive to swap in a new one just to see. If anything, you'd want to try and borrow a working oneform someone for testign purposes before outlaying cash for new. (sit down before pricing one BTW)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for your reply.

I've looked at the rather awesome diagnostics page and covered most everything that I can check myself.

Now here is an interesting development. The fuel injector relay, recently purchaced with the help from "that guy at Napa" indeed has an 87a terminal. What kinds of problems would this cause? And how do I go about getting the correct one?
 

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1966-2013
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*ding*ding*ding*
We have a winner!!!

That type of relay is used for things like parking/brake light combinations. ie: regardless of it being 'turned on' or not, power goes through it. (well, basically like that anyway)
Just a matter of which terminal it passes through.
Disconnect that specific relay from the circut and I'll bet your problem with the battery drawdown dissapears.

How to get the proper one?
You need the p# so they can cross reference inventory.
Bosch 0 332 019 150 will get you the correct type with a mounting tab on it, or, you can do a search here and in the spider subsection for alternate #'s from Bosch and other manufacturers.

IIRC, the horn relay in the fusebox is also of the correct type along with the previously mentioned AC relays if you wanted to pull it out, confirm terminal designations, then give that a try.

Point of note:
Your rough running will almost assuredly clear right up once the correct relay is in there as currently there's 2 injectors not working right as a result of said incorrect relay.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Wow. Plugged the horn relay in and it runs much better as predicted! Yet to see if the battery drain is still a problem but I'm too busy rejoicing to care at this moment. You don't know how many hours and parts I have replaced to trace it back to this. Many thanks to you and everyone else on the alfabb!!
 

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An EXCELLENT bit of diagnostics there, Darren!

Main relay part numbers;
Alfa - 116.00.65.135.00
Fiat - 60513939
Bosch - 0 332 014 125
Sipea - 0440 12V

In a pinch, you can use the horn, power window or heated rear window relay. There are all the same (from the factory anyway).

EDIT: learn.........to.........type..........faster
Another EDIT: what you had Scotty was current draw (or drain), NOT a short. A current drain does just that; drains the battery. A short blows fuses, melts wires or requires a call to the fire department.
 

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@ Tifosi - you getting clairvoyant? That is an amazing piece of internet detective work!

@ Papajam - be careful, soon Darren's head will be so big he won't be able to drive his Spider with the top up.

@ Scotty - Ain't that grand? Glad to hear you got a BOGO (but one, get one) fix for your Spider. If you are so inclined, consider becoming a BB subscriber. The few bucks you toss in the kitty helps keep this place alive. I think it is a great value.
 
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