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Thread: Mazda 5 Battery Slow Draw/Not keeping a Charge

  1. #16
    Registered Member

    2014 mazda5

    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    California
    Posts
    5
    Once in a while, if I left the car for 4-5 days, the battery would drained. But the last few days, I need to jump start it 3 days in a row.
    I have an aftermarket android HU and a DVR with 4 cameras.

    Will try the method from the youtube link this weekend.

  2. #17
    Registered Member

    2014 mazda5

    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    California
    Posts
    5
    I check the fuses over the weekend. Nothing came up high enough; except the 'ROOM'; read 1 mV. That fuse is for audio, dome lights and alarm as well. I took the fuse out and I could not unlock the car using FOB.

    Anyway, I left the car over night without the ROOM fuse. I am still able to start the car the next morning (have to put back the fuse). So that 1mV on 15A fuse might be troublesome. Or maybe it is the battery ? it is 2 years old from costco.

  3. #18
    Registered Member

    2010 Mazda 5 Sport

    Join Date
    May 2019
    Posts
    132
    1mV (millivolt) isn't right. Do you mean 1ma (milliAmps)? Voltage should always be 11.5v-12.5v. Electrical Current (Amps) is what you measure your drain in. Voltage is electron "pressure", Amps is amount of electron "flow". You want to measure the flow.

    If it's 1 ma...that should not be an issue.

    Did you check the drain from the Battery to a battery terminal first? With the car OFF, disconnect a battery terminal and put it in SERIES with the Multimeter. Set a high setting for AMPS and one lead in the Amps port. Anything above a few milliAmps is cause for concern. THEN you go to looking for fuses.

    Also, when the car is OFF, what is the voltage across the battery terminals? A resting battery should be like 12-12.5v (I've seen 11.8v on a working battery).

    When the car is RUNNING, what is the voltage across the battery terminals? To charge a battery you MUST have a higher voltage to "push" electrons into the battery from the alternator. You should get above 13v. Preferrably 13.5v-14v. Higher than 15v...and you're dealing with an overcharge scenario which will drastically shorten the life of your battery.

    If your voltages at the battery are good...the alternator should be OK. If you have no parasitic drain from the battery other than a few mA, then it's looking like your battery needs to be load tested at any autoparts store.

    EDIT:

    Do you have corrosion at either of the battery terminals? If so, you have a bad connection at the battery. This will require a new terminal end installed or a new cable. Cleaning the terminal will help for a while, but the problem will eventually come back...potentially a year or so later. Take the cable off...bend it around..inspect it for cracks. Listen for internal popping and crackles which indicate internal corrosion. A car's starter needs a crap ton of current and if the cable is too bad, not enough current can go through it...then it will not start...but all the accessories will work...so often the battery is blamed.

    Keep us posted.

    EDIT: EDIT:

    If you find a large parasitic drain at the battery...and you check for drain at all the fuses (many cars have MULTIPLE fuse banks in the engine bay and the cabin)...and the drain from all the fuses does NOT add up to the total....then you have a short somewhere else. I would start looking at anything wired directly to the battery...or a short through the starter.

    -Mike
    Last edited by negusm; 09-17-2019 at 11:38 AM.

  4. #19
    Registered Member

    2010 Mazda 5 Sport

    Join Date
    May 2019
    Posts
    132
    Quote Originally Posted by bsedgal View Post
    There's plenty of YouTube videos out there for detecting parasitic draws on the battery. My personal favorite method:
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=lRcj1fQcWwU
    OK, I see where he got the mv from instead of ma. I don't know if this is the best way...It's an indicator, and I can think of a few problems with this approach. I'd still test at the battery to find the draw across the entire system.

    And no, you don't need to "break out the expensive equipment", lol.
    Last edited by negusm; 09-17-2019 at 01:59 PM.

  5. #20
    Registered Member

    2014 mazda5

    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    California
    Posts
    5
    I went ahead to bring the battery to costco. It is 2 years old, so they honored the warranty. Got a new one from them again. And 3 days and counting without troubles. Fingers crossed.
    Occasional jump-start the battery might cause it to lose the hold capability.

    I think the mazda; regardless model; has some parasitic draw somewhere. I read online there are a lot of similar issue.

    Thanks for all help and information though.

  6. #21
    Registered Member

    2014 mazda5

    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    California
    Posts
    5
    Quote Originally Posted by negusm View Post
    1mV (millivolt) isn't right. Do you mean 1ma (milliAmps)? Voltage should always be 11.5v-12.5v. Electrical Current (Amps) is what you measure your drain in. Voltage is electron "pressure", Amps is amount of electron "flow". You want to measure the flow.

    If it's 1 ma...that should not be an issue.

    Did you check the drain from the Battery to a battery terminal first? With the car OFF, disconnect a battery terminal and put it in SERIES with the Multimeter. Set a high setting for AMPS and one lead in the Amps port. Anything above a few milliAmps is cause for concern. THEN you go to looking for fuses.

    Also, when the car is OFF, what is the voltage across the battery terminals? A resting battery should be like 12-12.5v (I've seen 11.8v on a working battery).

    When the car is RUNNING, what is the voltage across the battery terminals? To charge a battery you MUST have a higher voltage to "push" electrons into the battery from the alternator. You should get above 13v. Preferrably 13.5v-14v. Higher than 15v...and you're dealing with an overcharge scenario which will drastically shorten the life of your battery.

    If your voltages at the battery are good...the alternator should be OK. If you have no parasitic drain from the battery other than a few mA, then it's looking like your battery needs to be load tested at any autoparts store.

    EDIT:

    Do you have corrosion at either of the battery terminals? If so, you have a bad connection at the battery. This will require a new terminal end installed or a new cable. Cleaning the terminal will help for a while, but the problem will eventually come back...potentially a year or so later. Take the cable off...bend it around..inspect it for cracks. Listen for internal popping and crackles which indicate internal corrosion. A car's starter needs a crap ton of current and if the cable is too bad, not enough current can go through it...then it will not start...but all the accessories will work...so often the battery is blamed.

    Keep us posted.

    EDIT: EDIT:

    If you find a large parasitic drain at the battery...and you check for drain at all the fuses (many cars have MULTIPLE fuse banks in the engine bay and the cabin)...and the drain from all the fuses does NOT add up to the total....then you have a short somewhere else. I would start looking at anything wired directly to the battery...or a short through the starter.

    -Mike
    Good info. Will try these when I have the time. Thank you.

  7. #22
    Registered Member

    2010 Mazda 5 Sport

    Join Date
    May 2019
    Posts
    132
    Just a little bit extra info...this should be obvious...but let's say you do find a 1A (a full AMP!) drain at the battery.

    Start pulling fuses.

    Let's say that after the 3rd fuse...the drain drops to .5A. Hey! you found part of a problem!

    You still have a .5A drain somehwere. Let's say you pull all fuses and she's still got a .5A drain at the battery. You now need to find it in the wiring between the battery and the fuses...this is rare...but possible...and good luck with that Hopefully it's just some aftermarket crap hooked directly to the battery that can be reasily removed.

    But now you KNOW where all the drain is. The video tip is a good one for quick (but incomplete) diagnosis. For me, I want to know there is no way I missed anything.

    I've worked on really old cars and oh...the horrors prior owners inflict on their wiring...

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