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BANGKOK 19 April 2019 10:20
Our Man in the Tropics

1st Mains to Positive ; 2nd Return [ Earth ] to Negative ; But,- Sparks between Negative Clamp & Negative Terminal ; Also, some Motor engaged ; I immediately retracted Cable from Terminal

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Posted (edited)

Ref.

Mazda Tribute, Benzene, 6 V, 3 litre, Auto-Transmission, 16 Years old approx., 165,000 km approx., 5th Owner

Ford Escape is the lesser brother of Mazda Tribute ;

i.e.

Ford Escape is the "re-badged" Mazda Tribute ( almost ) ;

And, not to lesser spec. for given year of comparable models

 

Car in Soi for many months without starting ignition

Tried recently ;

But,- Battery depleted.

 

New Battery Installation

 

1st Mains Clamp to Positive ;

2nd Return [ Earth ] Clamp to Negative ;

But,- Sparks between Return Clamp & Negative Terminal  ;

Also, some Motor in engine bay [ I think ] engaged ;

Note ;

There was no simultaneous contact by Tool with Positive Terminal of Battery.

I immediately retracted Clamp from Terminal so as to halt this nasty event.

 

QUESTIONS :

 

1_

Consequences of that very event above ?

 

2_

Perhaps animal has shorted the wiring ?

 

3_

Overall Problem is likely to be ?

 

4_

If I need Auto-Electrician,- how much will fixing the situation cost approx. ?

 

Thanking you in advance for your helpful replies,

 

Our Man in the Tropics

Edited by Our Man in the Tropics

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FURTHER INFO. ;

 

Re ; IGNITION-SLOT FOR KEY ;

Nothing in the ignition-slot when connecting battery ;

But, there may have been some device selected as on ;

 

I confess to :

not having thought ahead for that state

being an inexperienced driver [ Yet,- I am very studious & attentive & dedicated ]

not being very knowledgeable about the use of the controls of this model.

 

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

Re ; ARCING

There is some Minor "Pitting" Damage now to Neg. Terminal of Battery.

 

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if any electrical device is on in the car (interior light, ignition etc) it will cause a slight spark. If it is still sparking (or smoking!) after wire is seated on terminal then you have a short somewhere. Try to turn everything off before connecting; if this is the cause then there are no terminal (pun intended) consequences.

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You will get minor sparks when connecting the negative even with nothing turned on, there's always a small load somewhere (interior light, clock, engine management system, radio).

 

You have "something" running (thus bigger sparks), you need to find out what's running and (if it's not supposed to be) stop it. Turn everything off (don't forget the blower/aircon).

 

Are you sure the ignition is actually off? Sometimes older locks can allow the key to be removed in the Acc/On position when they become worn or broken. Put the key in and turn fully counter-clockwise (usually) to the Off  position.

 

Assuming you get no smoke/hot battery connections when the battery is connected, try starting the engine.

 

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Posted (edited)

If one [ I or recruited person ] initially just 'ensures that every control is switched to "Off" state', & tries connecting the negative terminal again as 2nd connection,- does that allow chance that same event re-occur with perhaps damage to the various computer units in car's electrical & electronic systems ?

 

Should I get Auto-Electrician to check out car's wiring etc. before trying to connect batter again ?

Edited by Our Man in the Tropics

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If you can get hold of a multimeter (they can be bought at various electrical shops and are useful to have around the house too), you could check the resistance between the disconnected battery cables.  With the ignition off, a very low, or zero resistance would indicate a short.

 

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Posted (edited)
On 3/22/2019 at 10:09 AM, ballpoint said:

If you can get hold of a multimeter (they can be bought at various electrical shops and are useful to have around the house too), you could check the resistance between the disconnected battery cables.  With the ignition off, a very low, or zero resistance would indicate a short. 

 

1_

"... you could check the resistance between the disconnected battery cables. ..."

 

1_1_

Does having 1 Terminal connected to its proper Post of Battery AND the other Terminal disconnected suffice for this setup ?

1_2_

If "Yes", should the disconnected Terminal be the Return / Earth / Ground / Negative ?

 

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

2_

"... With the ignition off, a very low, or zero resistance would indicate a short. ..."

 

2_1_

Is it that the Multimeter itself provides the current to encounter, & thus, feedback, the resistance ?

 

 

Edited by Our Man in the Tropics

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Man up in the tropics!

Just connect the thing back up, slowly count to 10 and if no smoke or fire go try to start the thing.

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Posted (edited)

I

1 hour ago, Jan Dietz said:

Man up in the tropics!

Just connect the thing back up, slowly count to 10 and if no smoke or fire go try to start the thing.

In my lack of expertise,- for this situation I have to be very careful not to damage the numerous computer modules when I NOW KNEW [ KNOW ? ] that there MAY be was [ is ? ] a SHORTING situation in the electrical + electronic systems of this vehicle ;

It would be reckless, & moreover negligent now that I have witnessed an unusual occurrence [ arcing & motor spinning ], to not seek authoritative insight, & guidance ahead of completing the connecting of the terminals to the battery.

Damaging 1 of those computer would be a very serious problem ;

Difficulty of locating expertise, & replacement part, & time, & money, & stress inter alia.

 

My just previous post was composed the other day, & is of course helpful for this situation as educative even with questions ;

However,- unbeknownst to me it was not sent ;

I had forgotten to press the send button.

And,- so I sent it anyway, & logically so, ahead of sending this very update.

 

Thanks to the helpful replies in this thread, & another thread on this matter which I also started in another forum, & other information I learned in further research, & likelihood of not recruiting an auto-electrician for reasonable price soon,- I decided to ensure that all the manual controls be in OFF position [ not knowable for some controls though ; Such is the lack of clarity with some of the controls ] & inserted & removed key from ignition for sure at most anti-clockwise position, & closed all doors, & then tentatively touched the Negative Terminal to Battery's Negative Post for to test if any arcing & / or motor spinning, when last Terminal being connected to Battery ;

 

Thankfully,- on this occasion there was only the very faintest of arcing ;

And, in re-touching the post again,- there was nil arcing ;

So,- I completed the connection.

 

And, upon turning the key in ignition,- I had immediate starting of the engine.

 

THIS THREAD IS A VERY USEFUL DOCUMENT ON JUST 1 OF THE POSSIBLE "UNDETERMINED" -- TO BE SPECIFIC -- CAUSES FOR ARCING PHENOMENA WHEN COMPLETING THE FINAL CONNECTION [ TYPICALLY,- THE NEGATIVE TERMINAL TO NEGATIVE POST OF BATTERY ; THROUGH THIS QUEST,- I LEARN THAT SOME SET-UPS HAVE IT THAT THE RETURN / EARTH / GROUND IS THE POSITIVE TERMINAL ; AND, THAT TERMINAL CONNECTED TO THE POSITIVE POST OF BATTERY ]

 

Edited by Our Man in the Tropics

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Posted (edited)

Worry 2 much. In the first instance of sparking, if damage was to be done, it would have been done then.

Computers in cars are damaged most often by static discharges, which is why you disconnect cables AND ground the case before removing connectors.

 

Edited by canthai55
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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Our Man in the Tropics said:

I

In my lack of expertise,- for this situation I have to be very careful not to damage the numerous computer modules when I NOW KNEW [ KNOW ? ] that there MAY be was [ is ? ] a SHORTING situation in the electrical + electronic systems of this vehicle ;

It would be reckless, & moreover negligent now that I have witnessed an unusual occurrence [ arcing & motor spinning ], to not seek authoritative insight, & guidance ahead of completing the connecting of the terminals to the battery.

Damaging 1 of those computer would be a very serious problem ;

Difficulty of locating expertise, & replacement part, & time, & money, & stress inter alia.

 

My just previous post was composed the other day, & is of course helpful for this situation as educative even with questions ;

However,- unbeknownst to me it was not sent ;

I had forgotten to press the send button.

And,- so I sent it anyway, & logically so, ahead of sending this very update.

 

Thanks to the helpful replies in this thread, & another thread on this matter which I also started in another forum, & other information I learned in further research, & likelihood of not recruiting an auto-electrician for reasonable price soon,- I decided to ensure that all the manual controls be in OFF position [ not knowable for some controls though ; Such is the lack of clarity with some of the controls ] & inserted & removed key from ignition for sure at most anti-clockwise position, & closed all doors, & then tentatively touched the Negative Terminal to Battery's Negative Post for to test if any arcing & / or motor spinning, when last Terminal being connected to Battery ;

 

Thankfully,- on this occasion there was only the very faintest of arcing ;

And, in re-touching the post again,- there was nil arcing ;

So,- I completed the connection.

 

And, upon turning the key in ignition,- I had immediate starting of the engine.

 

THIS THREAD IS A VERY USEFUL DOCUMENT ON JUST 1 OF THE POSSIBLE "UNDETERMINED" -- TO BE SPECIFIC -- CAUSES FOR ARCING PHENOMENA WHEN COMPLETING THE FINAL CONNECTION [ TYPICALLY,- THE NEGATIVE TERMINAL TO NEGATIVE POST OF BATTERY ; THROUGH THIS QUEST,- I LEARN THAT SOME SET-UPS HAVE IT THAT THE RETURN / EARTH / GROUND IS THE POSITIVE TERMINAL ; AND, THAT TERMINAL CONNECTED TO THE POSITIVE POST OF BATTERY ]

 

Your car is -ve earth ... do you have some local blood ... just wondered as you seem to struggle to get to the point ....quickly ...

Edited by JAS21

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