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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 97 "R" 2.0 CDx (auto) and the ignition light comes on when the ignition is switched off. It goes out when the ignition is switched on.

Weirder..It gets slightly brighter when the gear shift is moved from P or N to any gear selection,

It goes out when the engine is running. (after I've charged the battery again)

I've pulled out every fuse and relay I can find and still have no joy in isolating the fault. There is a 4.9 amp drain on the battery with all fuses (that I can find) pulled out. This is measured with a multimeter in-line between the negative battery terminal and the battery earth cable.

Next I disconnected the smaller diameter cable bolted to the lug on the thicker battery -ve cable and checked the current drain on those independently. Following results........

1) There's a 300mA drain on the cable that goes up and to the right and into the main wiring loom. These are all brown wires so must be earth returns from the main wiring loom.

2) There's 4.6A drain on the cable with the lug on it that seems to go off into the engine bay.

I have the Haynes manual and it is not very good. Actually it's crap. The wiring diagram shows some 60A and 30A "MAXI" fuses(at least that's what I think they are called but the Haynes manual is so bad I cannot read it. I think it is made with recycled toilet paper). Anyway it states these MAXI fuses are in the relay boxes in the engine bay. There are allegedly 6 of these and I can only find two 30A in a box with 1 other relay at the front right of the engine bay. Looks like they are for the radiator fans. I found another box with 6 relays and one on top of the ABS with 3 relays but no more fuses.

The only way I can get the battery to charge is to disconnect it before connecting the charger.

If anybody can help by suggesting the cause of this I'd be very grateful. And any idea where those fuses are in the engine bay.

Thanks in advance.

:confused:
 

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Yep agree, it sounds like faulty diode pack in the back of the alternator hence the current draw even with the igntion off.

solution: fit new alternator

> The only way I can get the battery to charge is to disconnect
> it before connecting the charger.

You should ALWAYS disconnect the battery from the car loom when charging it. Even though the battery charger is still only chucking 14v max, its the current which is higher. With the rest of the car connected up in parelle, the charger sees this and it could also damage any sentive electronic parts installed on the car.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks folks....that's sort of what I expected. Actually it was the only thing I didn't check directly. Just eliminated other stuff.

I couldn't get near the alternator for all the bits around it and I'm OK at electrics but not too good at the mechanical stuff so didn't want to go taking stuff off the car. The alternator looks difficult to get to and the CDx has bits stuffed in all round the engine.

The other thing that's just happened is that the airbag warning light comes on now and it didn't before. I haven't been near the air bag circuitry....is this common?

I haven't had this car long (5 months): So far
- Door speakers blown
- Multi-function display has lots of segments missing
- Burnt through its plug leads
- Oil leak from sump
- Oil leak from somewhere around the right side of cam cover
- Cam belt rollers

Are there more gremlins lurking that haven't showed up yet? I bought it for me missus because she wanted an automatic. Is this why they do not hold their value?

I used to drive a 1990 SRi 130, did over 120K miles and it never went wrong...what's up with GM now?


:(
 

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Discussion Starter #8
It was OK before this trouble. I just hope that the battery charger didn't mess up something when I first tried to charge it with the battery in circuit. I didn't know about disconnecting it.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Actually just another thought Andy......will the airbag light also come on if the voltage is low. I only get 12.2V with the engine running. I checked my other car (Saab 9-5, it never goes wrong either, got 105K on it.) and I get 13.1V [email protected]#dy vectra has only 43K on the clock. (while the odometer is still working that is.)
 

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Nogggin_the_Nog said:
I only get 12.2V with the engine running. I checked my other car (Saab 9-5, it never goes wrong either, got 105K on it.) and I get 13.1V [email protected]#dy vectra has only 43K on the clock. (while the odometer is still working that is.)
Alternator is fubared mate.swap it for another and your light will go out.

12.2 means its not charging enough.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Ignition light stays on with engine off and keys out

THANKS !!!

New alternator fitted............all is well...........airbag light went out also

Thanks again but...............what's next to go on these cars?
 
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