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Thread: URGENT: check your battery wiring TODAY!

  1. #1
    ⋆⋆ CF Donator ⋆⋆ Stonejag's Avatar
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    URGENT: check your battery wiring TODAY!

    Had a nasty breakdown earlier so I thought it would be worth warning everyone!

    Was on my way to work (at 60 on a single carriageway A-road) when the dash went blank, radio turned off and engine died - I found the hazard lights inoperative a second or so later - just rolled to a stop at the side of the road. Popped the bonnet before jumping out but no smoke and a cold battery so I relaxed a bit and rang the AA. Luckily I still had my hugely padded hi-vis jacket in the boot which was doubly handy - not only because it was sodding freezing and I'd forgotten my coat but also as a bit of warning to the traffic, which miraculously continued to miss me for over 20 minutes.

    Anyway, the AA dragged me up the road to the next layby - we'd narrowed it down to wiring already (failed alternator would have kept running off the battery and my alternator warning light works, battery wouldn't cause it to die) but almost immediately found the culprit - a single thick wire, red with black tracer. to the positive battery terminal had parted ways. The failure was under the insulation so not visible until the last strands gave way, but it was a little tight (routes into a thick black insulation sleeve running behind the battery) and had obviously suffered metal fatigue. The last four or five strands were a little longer so were the last to go - it was very misty and I was only 5 minutes into my trip, so I had the front and rear fogs and heated rear window on: must have been too much current for the last section which (luckily!) went fusible-link on me. On inspection the the insulation was bubbled so it must have been running hot for a while. If it hadn't been under tension when it went I could easily have been looking at a loom fire.

    Therefore - please check your permanent live feed at the crimped end for any signs of weakness, and renew if necessary! I was quite surprised everything is distributed from the same wire - more ingenious German Friday-afternoon engineering - but if it splits you could be left stranded on the middle of the road without hazard lights, or stranded in the middle of the road without hazard lights with your engine bay on fire!

    If you aren't already carrying an extinguisher, please consider it! Could be the best £40 you ever spend...

    Stone
    RIP: '95 Blackberry Corrado VR6 auto
    Daily: 2003 DPB Mk4 R32

  2. #2
    ⋆⋆ CF Donator ⋆⋆ Portent's Avatar
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    Thanks for the heads up. Will check mine asap. I must get around to getting an extinguisher too.
    Storm grey VR6 | BBS RX2 16" | Milltek | D&G cams and map | Black cloth Recaros | Audioscape | Huge grin

  3. #3
    Super Moderator CazzaVR's Avatar
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    Thanks for that mate! I'll check mine tomorrow.

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  4. #4
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    Cheers for that I'll give mine a check before I head back to England with the VR. Managed to acquire a brand new quantum fire extinguisher from a Mercedes that was traded in a couple of weeks ago but can't help but think leaving it in the boot might not be the best idea as I'd rather have it close to hand if the worst did happen.

  5. #5
    ⋆⋆ CF Member ⋆⋆ Jim Bowen's Avatar
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    I always worry that a fuel line failing or old wiring will be the thing to end my corrados life. Will be checking it all.

    Just like a golf................But better!!!

  6. #6
    ⋆⋆ CF Donator ⋆⋆ Stonejag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trickygti View Post
    Cheers for that I'll give mine a check before I head back to England with the VR. Managed to acquire a brand new quantum fire extinguisher from a Mercedes that was traded in a couple of weeks ago but can't help but think leaving it in the boot might not be the best idea as I'd rather have it close to hand if the worst did happen.
    Mine lives in the footwell behind the driver's seat - if I need it I'm going to have to get the door open regardless (and I rarely have passengers in the back) so I figure it's worth the odd clunk as I go round corners!

    The sleeving seems a bit long if anything, so it holds the end of the wires at quite a tight angle as they exit it. The wiring has a bit more movement on mine as the battery is a Bosch replacement and the metal retention clip doesn't screw down low enough to grip the protrusion on the base very well. As well as recrimping the end of the wire I'm going to try cutting a slit in a rubber block and fitting it over the bracket so the battery can't slide left-right. Hopefully then it'll stay together!

    Stone
    RIP: '95 Blackberry Corrado VR6 auto
    Daily: 2003 DPB Mk4 R32

  7. #7
    ⋆⋆ CF Donator ⋆⋆
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    Cheers for the heads up.

    Any extinguishers you can recommend?

  8. #8
    ⋆⋆ CF Donator ⋆⋆ dannyboy's Avatar
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    I always carry a dry powder extinguisher in the booth after what happened to my last rado ! Cheers for the heads up

    Marders ate my corrado!

    1991 US G60 in tornado red
    1990 G60 red-Now 20vt....298bhp and 304lb/f on Aral 102 octance on 30 PSI boost and crazy timing!!!

  9. #9
    ⋆⋆ CF Donator ⋆⋆ Stonejag's Avatar
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    Mine's a 2kg dry powder too - make a hell of a mess when used but the best match for both solid and liquid (fuel) fires. Worth going on a training course if you can wangle one out of work, volunteer as a fire marshal or something
    RIP: '95 Blackberry Corrado VR6 auto
    Daily: 2003 DPB Mk4 R32

  10. #10
    ⋆⋆ CF Donator ⋆⋆ guildmage's Avatar
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    Taking your advice seriously, went to Hallfords on lunch today and bought a small dry powder extinguisher (£17). It's now placed behind passenger seat, I hope will never have to use it on my car.

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