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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The other day I had a dead battery. This is the second battery. I had some problems with intermittent dead battery issues last winter. There was no lights left on. Vehicle hadn't been sitting for weeks. Nothing else I can think of that would have killed the battery. I have done a parasitic draw test on my own with my multimeter and it was 40-50 mA 40 mins after shutdown. I tested volts when running for the alternator and it was between 13.2 and 14v at the battery terminals (different times I guess the voltage regulator working). Since those tests came back good and I was going to the dealer anyway for oil change/winter tire change I figured I would get the dealership do a full charging/alternator/starter test and they say everything came back good.

I had a couple questions about the results.

1. Battery test shows good but volts show 12.13?
2. What is Int R?
3. What's life at 96%.
4. 14.74 volts too high for an alternator charge?
5. Battery up top 12.13v but down below over 14v?



Another thing to note after charging the battery at 10amps overnight even without removing the surface charge my volt meter reads 12.4 volts only.

I do have a remote dealer installed starter.



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Just to clarify, you just recently replaced your battery and the new one is giving issue?

What is the manufacture date of the new one? I Had Autozone sell me a really old battery last fall. Put it in and it was junk. I believe it had a date of almost 3 years old.
 

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Aftermarket stereo installed? Auxiliary anything?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
No this second battery has been installed about 9 month but days are getting shorter, lights are on more as well as seat heater but only when it's running. Had the similar problem last winter on the first battery. Only thing aftermarket is the starter. Installed by Nissan


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12.4v at full charge means battery is bad
 

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Battery should never read over 14.1 while charging. Indicates issue with battery and/or charging system. Part of my pretrip inspection I did on dumptruck every morning for 3 years
 

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Battery should never read over 14.1 while charging. Indicates issue with battery and/or charging system.
According to the FSM, the charging voltage can be as high as 15.6 volts.

The charging system has built-in temperature compensation - although the typical charging voltage is 13.5-14.0 volts at 68 degrees F., it may drastically increase in cold temperatures.

 

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I had a couple questions about the results.

1. Battery test shows good but volts show 12.13?
2. What is Int R?
3. What's life at 96%.
4. 14.74 volts too high for an alternator charge?
5. Battery up top 12.13v but down below over 14v?

Another thing to note after charging the battery at 10amps overnight even without removing the surface charge my volt meter reads 12.4 volts only.
1 & 3. 12.13 v is 96% of a fully charged battery (12.1/12.6) - battery has 6 cells at 2.1v per cell = 12.6v.
2. No idea
4. No this is normal - voltages spike 13-15v when battery is charging by an alternator or battery charger
5. 12.13v is a little low and may be too low to start the truck.

Not sure what type of battery charger you have, but any battery charger will spike the voltage ranges and then come back down to full charge.......if it dropped to 12.4 while on the charger not sure if you have a maintainer or regulator. I recently picked up the AGM version of this type of trickle charger which goes through multi stages.

How far and how long do you drive daily? My wife drives our Honda a whopping 1 mile (round trip) to work which doesn't give time for the alternator to charge the battery sufficiently and eventually you won't have enough amperage to start the vehicle. That battery died just last week after 3 years and no longer holds a charge.

I've had a parasitic drain since I had upgraded my stereo and have a smart remote starter......also the truck is a weekender (work from home). I had contemplated going with a second battery setup but opted for an AGM (yellow top), which has helped dramatically. I also rigged an SAE connector with an extension from the battery installed in the middle of the front air dam. Once or twice a month, I plug in the trickle charger and it keeps my battery topped off.

I'd look into getting a higher CCA battery and troubleshoot from there. Hope you get it worked out.
 

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Int R = internal resistance - not quite sure how they measured it though. We are in the age of cheaply manufactured batteries, it would not surprise me if battery is defective after 9 mo. I am getting about 30 mo average on my truck, however last battery in wifes car lasted 10 weeks!
 

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Good info here, thanks. I've had problems with my battery as well lately. It's about three year old and the Pathfinder doesn't get driven very much. I cleaned the corrosion off the terminals and topped the cells with de mineralized water and that has helped a bit. My voltage also sits about 12.13v.
 

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Good info here, thanks. I've had problems with my battery as well lately. It's about three year old and the Pathfinder doesn't get driven very much. I cleaned the corrosion off the terminals and topped the cells with de mineralized water and that has helped a bit. My voltage also sits about 12.13v.
Short distance / infrequent driving can aggravate things. My mother in law who is retired drives her car a few times a week and only down the road to target or the grocery store. Never on the interstate and a 3 mile round trip. She has occasional no crank issues and averages about 3 years to a battery.
 

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50 mA parasitic draw is probably normal and would take a month or two to draw the battery down. Is it possible that there is an intermittent draw down of some kind?

If it were mine I think I would unhook the battery and see if it still goes down. In other words try to isolate the problem to the battery or the vehicle.

As bob-w said Int-R would be internal resistance. It's a value that is computed using the current through a high current low Ohmic value resistor. You can do it at home:
It is a value that is usually less than 50 milli Ohms for a new battery (in mdsjohna's photo it measured 5.58 milli Ohms), it may increase to as much as 1 Ohm as the battery ages. When internal resistance gets too high the battery will appear to take a charge and the voltage will usually read good but it will have no capacity. But this is obviously not the OP's problem.

14.7 Volts is high for the alternator but not drastically so. During the 1980s batteries were pretty much the same as they are now and some vehicle manufacturers set their charging systems to run higher Voltage than they do now. Honda for example set theirs for 15 Volts and it didn't damage the battery in any way but you did need to add water more often and light bulbs didn't last as long. Anyway 14.7V charge Voltage would not cause the OP's problem.
 

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My 2004 can sit at least 2 months being 100 miles away. It has an aftermarket stereo, etc., and has absolutely no issues starting after a few months sitting.

Have you tried unbolting the negative battery cable overnight, see if that helps? Sure, you will lose your stereo pre-sets and clock, but you need to find out the issue.

My 1998 Frontier I bought in 2004 with 100K had such dead battery issues, traced it to bad electrical part of the ignition switch; batteries would die for no apparent reason, could not be charged up because would test bad after charging try, usually left with brand new free battery. One day daughter and I were installing new speakers, keys were on the ground, and all of a sudden stuff started happening under the dash all by itself; new electrical part of the switch fixed thta.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I haven't disconnected the negative overnight. I don't think it would help as it's a intermittent problem. The first battery I had to boost 4-5 times over the coarse of a couple months. On this replacement battery I've only had to boost once.

Leading up to the boost. Monday I drove to work, 8 miles, stop and go traffic drive takes about 25-30 mins, then home. Tuesday the day of the boost i drove to work 8 miles. Then from work to class. Work to class is only about 1-2 miles. I sat in my car for about 20 mins with the radio on in accessory position. When I went to go in I closed the window and when the window hit closed the truck clicked and it was dead. So there was one short trip in there as well as 20 mins of drain with the factory Pro4x Rockford system. But that shouldn't drain a fullly charged battery. I have never had to boost any other vehicle like this including an 08 Frontier and my habits haven't changed.

Something just seems off though not a critical issue where it is a problem every day.


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That battery has a weak cell especially since it's reserve time is so limited.

Clint
 

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I haven't disconnected the negative overnight. I don't think it would help as it's a intermittent problem. The first battery I had to boost 4-5 times over the coarse of a couple months. On this replacement battery I've only had to boost once.

Leading up to the boost. Monday I drove to work, 8 miles, stop and go traffic drive takes about 25-30 mins, then home. Tuesday the day of the boost i drove to work 8 miles. Then from work to class. Work to class is only about 1-2 miles. I sat in my car for about 20 mins with the radio on in accessory position. When I went to go in I closed the window and when the window hit closed the truck clicked and it was dead. So there was one short trip in there as well as 20 mins of drain with the factory Pro4x Rockford system. But that shouldn't drain a fullly charged battery. I have never had to boost any other vehicle like this including an 08 Frontier and my habits haven't changed.

Something just seems off though not a critical issue where it is a problem every day.


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The alternator does not charge at idle, you need to be turning a steady consistent RPM to be getting a good charge. Not knowing the draw of the RF system, it's hard to say how much of a draw 20 minutes was. Those are all things that will cause a marginal battery to show it's worth.
 
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