Electrical & Lights Battery flat.....Again!

Discussion in '8th Generation (2008-2015) [Acura TSX]' started by John Dickson, Saturday 23rd Nov, 2013.

  1. John Dickson Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Good morning.

    As the title says, twice this month I've had a flat battery and had to be rescued by a Mercedes Sprinter yesterday evening!

    Last night I called at the chip shop and as I was parked near a cross roads (not illegally parked but parked near) I thought that as I was only going to be a couple of minutes, I'd leave my position lights on as a safety measure. Could've used hazards but at 4 x 20W rather than 6x5W they would use 50W (4A) more power. Parking facing into the oncoming traffic I think there's an obscure law that you must have sidelights on.

    Should've cooked me own tea rather than being lazy! :lol:

    Anyway jumps back in the car and there's no power to start it.

    Surely (and in my nearly 20 years of driving including some near scrappers) this should not and has never caused an issue. I could understand if I'd left my headlights on, on main beam, for 3 hours but surely a diesel battery especially can run 30W (supply 2.5A) for a few minutes and not even notice it? Particularly as the car has done 200miles in the last 2 days so the battery should be fully charged.

    I called Honda Assistance and they said it may be up to 2 hours (probably busy with Audis :Rolf:) but they were on the scene in 45minutes :GoodJob:. It was a local firm CF Recovery they must sub-contract to the AA and they run Sprinters.

    He put the booster battery on and it fired up straight away.

    Didn't have time to give the car a run as I was already running late so hopefully it'll start this morning or all the bratwurstwagen owners on the street will think they've got a more reliable car than a Honda when the recovery turns up! Then it's off to the Dealership. They're probably fully booked as it's a Saturday but then again I have just given them a load of dosh for a new car so it's not entirely unreasonable to just turn up in my opinion.

    Think it wants a new battery but having said that it doesn't display the classic symptom of a dodgy battery of being sluggish to fire up first thing in the morning.

    Surely it can't be a parasitic drain on the system either otherwise it would be flat as a flat thing every morning.

    A bit of a mystery.

    Every time I start it, unless it's red hot, the glow plugs take a few moments to go off. Do these put a massive drain on the system? I'd just blasted up the A19/A1 so the car was hot at the time last night so didn't need the glow plugs. .
    Last edited: Saturday 23rd Nov, 2013
  2. AccordCU2 Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    United Kingdom Brum
    Either something is draining your battery really bad or you might have a duff battery.
    Take it to Honda and test the battery but tell them to stick a new one in for good measure.
  3. SpeedyGee Administrator Staff Team

    England Speedy Birmingham
    Not sure what the drain could be but as you say all sounds a little bizarre.

    You could do a quick test with a multimeter to make sure the alternator is charging the battery properly.

    If it is then probably the battery is on it way out. Glowplugs are quite heavy on current.
  4. John Dickson Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Hi Zoran

    Gonna have a run to the dealer this morning.

    One of the lads at work recently bought a Suzuki Vstrom and it turned out to have a duff battery so Suzuki gave him a new Yuasa battery under warranty.

    Suppose Yuasa could be supplied with duff components just as Honda or anyone else could.

    I'll let you know what they find.


    - - - Updated - - -

    Hi Speedy,

    It's definitely charging ok as it's been checked by AA the last time.

    I know the theory behind glowplugs but are they really necessary as sometimes I forget and just fire it up and it starts no problem. When I took delivery they explained what to do with the glowplugs but they also said it won't matter if I forget to let the light go off before I start the car. Maybe there more for when it gets really cold.

    Another score for petrol in the petrol versus diesel debate. :lol:

    - - - Updated - - -

    Was going to set off to take the car to the dealer but....flat as a flat thing again so waiting for Honda Assistance to come out again.

    - - - Updated - - -

    And the ABS icon has come on on the MID. Something definitely amiss here...
    SpeedyGee likes this.
  5. rhinogolf Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

    The Honda Batterys are rubbish im lucky to get a year out of them lucky Honda change under warranty, theirs that much electrics plus all my taxi data stuff, if i use HFT for a minute without engine running im lucky to start car after, im actually at moment trying to source the most powerfull battery i can get. I've had 3 battery's returned 2 i got from HH, plus this as happened on the I-CTDI and I-DTEC so can anyone reccomend a battery??
  6. RobB Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Strange about the battery.
    As for glowplugs I just jump in and start up, never think about the light. Always starts straight away, thats with 142 k on the clock.
  7. John Dickson Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Sorry for not getting back to you all with an update quicker... It's been a bit of a manic day.

    The AA patrol arrived and his first words as he pointed at the car were "What's happened here these just don't go wrong!"

    He spent a lot of time checking the car to make sure something wasn't staying on once the car was locked but for some reason there was a 0.5A current drain continually. He suggested that it needed a software update as it wasn't going into to sleep mode as it should.

    Understandably I'm a bit miffed at this point to hear this as I've just bought a new car so should have the latest software loaded on it.

    I'd already called Newcastle Honda and they were expecting me so I went in to see them.

    Turns out after speaking to the Service Manager at Newcastle Honda that this is normal as all Accords stay "awake" for 5 minutes (I think he said) after switching the ignition off so this 0.5A drain should be there til the car goes to sleep, at which point it drops to 20mA i.e. the alarm/immobiliser drain which is normal.

    They checked everything over, confirmed it was going into sleep mode as it should and they thought that perhaps my ambient lighting pack (illuminated doorstep garnish in particular) wasn't shutting off but they confirmed it was.

    They hooked the battery up to the charger and tested it and it failed so looks like a duff battery, which they replaced under Warranty.

    Apparently though you shouldn't sit for any amount of time, no matter how short, with the ignition on or any accessories on without the engine running.

    There is a whole range of things running with the ignition in position 1 that you will not be aware of even though you may think everything is switched off it's not.

    I'll see what happens over the next few weeks.
  8. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    Wow a duff battery so early .. on the 7th Generation the HFT is alive for 15 minutes after the key has been pulled out. The good thing is you don't have a drain looks like they gave it a full once over.

    Epic fail for delphi batteries after all they are a GM subsidiary :Whistle:
  9. Ray Ambrose Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    United Kingdom Ray Cambridge
    My battery is over five years old. As a grandad I wait for the grandkids at school with the engine turned off for at least fifteen minutes before I go and collect them. In that fifteen minutes I listen to the radio, and am aware of the sound of the sat nav disc whirring...Never had a problem with my battery, and although a Diesel engine, never thought about the glowplugs. Just turned the key and it fires immediately. Suprised that a brand new car has battery problems...
    Last edited: Saturday 23rd Nov, 2013
  10. FirstHonda Moderator Staff Team

    United Kingdom Ed Wiltshire
    John, any idea how long your Accord had been sitting before you bought it - i.e. what was the manufactured date?

    Wondered if that could have been an issue if the battery wasn't disconnected while the car was stored, and had been allowed to drain then been recharged prior to delivery.

    I often use my HFT with the engine off (finishing calls in car parks etc.) and use the radio when cleaning the car too - and have never had an issue with battery drain (famous last words etc etc.). I do have a CTEK battery charger/conditioner for my MINI though, so may use that on the Accord to make sure the battery is tip top before the proper Winter weather kicks in...

    I always wait for the glowplug lights to go out prior to starting the engine - not sure why, just generally follow instructions! In the colder weather I find they take a max of 2-3 seconds to go out when starting the car from cold, so not an issue for me.
  11. John Dickson Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Hi CJ,

    Yes I've never had to replace a battery so early on a car before. When the AA man said it needs a software update I went there fully intending to leave the car with them until it was sorted and borrowing a courtesy car/demonstrator or whatever was available from them in the meantime - no matter how long it took. I've never had to take a new Accord back before, never mind this many times (3 in total) in the first 2 months! (loose reversing camera noticed when I got the car back home on day 1, cup holder lid that kept catching on the centre console a few times). Even the gear :tut: was noticeably off straight. It's not Newcastle Honda's fault, Durham Honda PDI'd it for them. Having said that, I also have to say Newcastle Honda have been spot on every time in rectifying these issues.

    Interesting to know its Delphi batteries on Accords, I wrongly assumed it was Yuasa.

    I haven't asked them about the exhaust trim yet - not had time and thought it was maybe a bit cheeky asking them about it yesterday when I had gone back with a faulty battery.

    I'll try and call them about it this week - hopefully it's going to be a bit quieter than the last few weeks - tempting fate there I know! :lol:

    Hi Ray,

    Couldn't agree more. I've done this loads of times over the years. Listening to the radio when waiting for someone or when washing the car, leaving the car parked with side lights on for a few minutes etc. Never had an issue before.

    Letting the glowplug light go out before starting the car or just firing up straight away makes little difference as far as I've experienced.

    Hi Ed,

    Just looked at my VIN code and compared it against CJ's guide on the forum. It's definitely a 2013 build but still it must have been stored for a while. It's a 5 month delivery time so that means it can't have been built any later than April 2013 for it to be in Honda group stock in September.

    Perhaps it's been swapped over with another duff battery there are so many points between leaving the factory and getting to the supplying dealer that we'll never know really.

    As you also say it should not be an issue using the radio and other low drain devices with the ignition off.

    Yes if the main beam and fan are left on full blast for three hours then you are asking to get a flat battery but low drain devices should not cause an issue unless of course the radio is left on all weekend or something.
  12. i-DSI Club Veteran ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Belgium Aalst
    I had my interior light on last night....:Blushing:. Car started without slightest problem this morning.
    Just to be on the safe side I charged my battery today as the drive a I did was only a few miles.
    I did had the same situation with an Insight a few years ago and that one did not want to start the next morning, but what do you want with such a mini-battery!
  13. Superdave Junior Member ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Delphi Batteries haven't been part of GM since 2007, sold to Johnson Controls late 2006, I used to work for Delphi.
  14. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
  15. ampers Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    I purchased a new battery from HH, fitted it on 10/3/15 because old one was 4 years old and seemed sluggish although charged using a ctek charger.
    Two days ago I charged it up for hours using said smart charger and then the following day after a 45 minute drive I parked for about 30 minutes.

    When starting dead flat, everything off when parked but key inserted in "O" position ( wife still in car!) not the slightest spin so I called the AA. He checked it all out, quick boost and away I went. However, he said that the cranking capacity was 241 and then 244. The rating is 410. Also the voltage was 10 with 0.2 amp, alternator output was 30 amps and 55 amps under load.
    Contacted HH (supplier of my replacement battery) who said no problem take the car to Local Honda and if the battery was faulty it would be replaced locally.

    Took it to Bristol Honda(Cribbs Causeway) today and they found that there was a parasitic drain caused by faulty HFT. Battery and everything else ok. They disconnected the HFT and everything now fine (I hope). This was all done for free inc. usual health check but I was quoted £2,031.19 to replace HFT and that there was ONE available in Belgium and after that it would be on back order or £200 - £400 for specialist repair plus £51.84 labour to remove and refit.

    I don't use the HFT so its a no brainer
  16. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    HFT units for the 7th Generation are 700 quid not the price you have been given bud :Ohdear:
  17. ampers Club Member ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

    This is for 8th Generation but still ridiculous !
  18. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    yup sure is.