I have read your blog, it is extremely helpful and has been useful to me as a new classic Lincoln owner. I have a question I would love your advice on. I have a 1967 Continental, it has a battery draw which I have yet to track down, from time to time I have to charge the battery if I don’t use the car for a week or so. Last time, I put the charger on, and after a few minutes tried to start, it turned over but was not charged enough to start. A few hours later, i came back to try and there was no power to the car at all. I thought maybe the charger was acting up, so I put a jump box on in preparation to try and start, and the car started up without a key in it. When I pulled the box off, it cut off. I am wondering what might have failed or shorted out that would cause this behavior, any advice on where to look is greatly appreciated.
Hi Jim –
You may not have a power draw when the car is not used for a week as you have stated. When you say that “the car started up without the key in it” I assume that you mean that the engine cranked and started without the key in the ignition and you rotating it to the start position. This is not uncommon and is caused by the contacts inside the starter solenoid fusing together. This fusing can be caused by a bad component in the cranking circuit and this will include bad battery cables, bad battery, bad solenoid or a starter with a very high draw etc. You will need to replace the solenoid with a high quality unit from a good known supplier (good quality is becoming difficult to find). In your case and before testing for a possible power draw from the battery the battery should be properly ” fully” charged and then tested by a shop with good battery test equipment. A good shop will be able to test it for its ability to accept and hold a full charge as well as its ability to supply the proper power to the starter when it needs to. You may be surprised at the results of the battery examination even if the battery is not old. If the above proves to be in good order though the next step is to consider the age and condition of the cables and the starter motor condition. The starter motor condition can be tested and determined while installed on the engine by an automotive electrical shop as well. If all of the above is in good order and the battery is still discharging contact us again and we will provide some advice on diagnosing a power draw if you are unable to do so.
Thanks so much for the response, I had the battery tested and it was definitely a contributing problem, I replaced it and the car is running fine. Odd because the manufacture date on the battery is November 2012. I still have a draw I need to track down, my plan is to connect a test light into the battery lead and see where the draw is coming from by removing fuses, etc.
If you have any further advice on diagnosis, I would appreciate it.
Thank you again,
We are glad that we were able to help with the battery issue. I assume that you have also replaced the starter solenoid that was stuck. If you are still having a power draw from the new battery it sounds like you are on the right track by eliminating suspected circuits one at a time. Two items to visibly check are the glove box light (for remaining on with the glove box door closed) and the clock. If the clock is inoperative unplug it as a test as well. A clock that is faulty and non operative could be using power in some cases. Do not allow the battery to continually discharge a large amount if you still have an ongoing power draw as this greatly affects battery life over time.