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Battery over heating and dies after 4 kms

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15 hours ago, Myles Cyncora said:

You sure? I don't want to spend whatever it is to get a bettery and have it not be the battery. 


a battery usually overheats when too much voltage is sent to it OR when 2 or more cells have a shortcircuit


btw don´t use it again until you test it or it will blow up and relase acid and toxic fumes everywhere...

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THe voltmeter isn't telling you battery voltage when the truck is running anyway, it's telling you how much voltage the alternator is putting out. Around 13-1/2 volts is correct, but if it's trying to push 13-1/2 volts into a battery with an internal fault, that's why it's overheating.


In theory you should be able to disconnect the battery after staring the engine and drive it all day. I found this out the hard way when I first attempted to install a kill switch in my race car. I thought I had it all figured out. Installed the box and switch where it was easily accessible when strapped in with a four point racing harness, connected all the wires, fired up the engine and hit the kill switch. It was night time, since I worked during the days, so I had the lights on. All that happened was that the engine kept running, but the headlights got brighter. All I had done was to remove the battery from the circuit, so the full output from the alternator was being fed to the lights without the damping effect of the battery in the circuit.


Back to the drawing board. I got it figured out, finally, but I learned something that day (night).



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Hi Myles,

You really, really, really need a voltmeter. You can get a cheap one for about $10. The voltmeter on the dash is notoriously unreliable.

I agree with everyone so far, most likely this is a bad battery. I think the strategy of pulling it and taking it to be checked make sense.

However, what does not make sense is that your vehicle dies. As Eagle pointed out, a bad battery, by itself, would not cause the vehicle to die. So there may be two separate things going on.

I think it's possible that the vehicle is overcharging, and that the dash gauge is not registering properly. This could kill the battery, hence two problems.

Voltage of a fully charged battery, engine off, should be around 12.8 V, give or take.

When the vehicle is running, and the alternator is putting out electricity, the reading should be around 13.8 V.

Please let us know how this turns out!


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49 minutes ago, HOrnbrod said:

It IS a bad battery. But yeah, it's a slow night.  :popcorn:


I agree his battery has coded.


But I don't want to say "Throw a new one in" without determining that it is charging correctly first...  But that's just me.  Auto parts stores here don't typically offer to test your dead battery or charging system when you go in to get a new battery.  My volt meter often reads 2V low, and that's typical on crusty old clusters and wires, throw 16.5V at a new battery for a while and it'll be as dead as his current one is.


Storing batteries in decent conditions while charged does not cause them to die a terribly early death, and 4 years is a terribly early death.  That said, we don't know how he charged it or abused it otherwise.

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Whereabouts are ya? I'm guessing east somewhere cause 45mins is nothing anywhere I've lived, haha.


I did an alternator in a Powerstroke a few weeks ago, but the new one came with a bad regulator. It put out reasonable voltage still (~13.5) but overcharged one of the batteries to the point it boiled. Strangely only the one of the two got overcharged, the other one stayed steady at 12.6V.

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