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Extended Spring Cleaning, Dead Battery, Flooded Motor
Summary: the battery kinda sucks, dont try to start with low charge, beware of bad/old gas.
It being unusually warm here in Upsate SC, I decided to spend an extended amount of time tinkering with my 8 in my garage. Over the previous week I clay barred, waxed, vacuumed, painted calipers, changed tranny and diff fluid, touched up the wheels, etc. Last night after putting the wheels back on and lowering it down, the sucker proved fitful.
I had listened to the radio during the evenings when I was in the garage. Apparently this was a bad idea. The battery was so low when I went to crank it, the radio display wouldnt light. So I hooked it up to another car and let it charge.
While trying to start it it apparently flooded. It was warm when I parked it, but somewhere on here I read the battery being weak and being used to start can possibly flood it. So I balanced waiting to charge some more and trying to get it to catch.
I gave up last night and started back on it tonight.
I finally got it to start combusting. I had to play with yanking the fuel pump fuse and putting it back in, but I did eventually get it started. It flashed a CEL for about 15 seconds after starting reliably (caught and quit maybe 4 times) the first time, then the CEL went off. It blew the nastiest fog out the pipes for a good 10-15 minutes. But I drove it down the road to fill it up after I tested its restarting and everything seemed and felt fine.
Be sure to double check what you are doing when connecting the jumper cables. Ive done it so many times correctly, but this time tonite I almost let out the magic smoke for good! Had it hooked up 12V charger to ground (battery on 8) + ground (starter on 8) for about a minute before I realized what I was doing. Ouch!
I plan on taking it to the dealer just to double check the CEL, but I feel everything is a-ok. I definitely had more trouble with this flood than the last (first) when it was new. But I was hesitant to send it off, and by golly I trumped it.
It shifts really nice, and I think I learned a little bit about it. Overall, it was worth it considering the long list of 'I wishes' I got done on it.
I love this car.
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Yeah, the OEM battery is really puny, like about 300 CCA. In fact, dealers are advised to use a much more robust OEM battery (640 CCA) when replacing the original battery. Unfortunately, replacing the original battery with the "bigger" battery is not a recall or a warranty item.
Ya may want to connect a maintenance charger to the battery if you're gonna let it sit for more than a few days. Schumacher has a 1.5 amp charger that goes into a "float mode" once the battery is fully charged. Advance Auto has them. (This same charger is also available at Sears under their brand name.) I use one every few days to bring the battery up to full charge, but I don't leave it connected after the full charge is reached.
Nice thing about this charger is that you can install a supplied pigtail with a connector permanently to the battery and then it's a simple matter to connect the charger to the pigtail as needed.