Battery drains - Club Touareg Forums
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post #1 of 14 Old 01-10-2014 Thread Starter
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Battery drains

Hello,
Here is what appended to me: left my Tuareg parked for almost 3 weeks (cold weather), when I got back battery was totally drained, at the point that not even dash or courtesy light came on, tried with jumper cables: nothing, tried with charger: nothing.
My mechanic sad that the battery went down cose the alternator is Brocken and have to replace both battery and alternator.
Now, I'm not an expert, but I did Not get any sign for that (red battery light, battery charger indication low, onboard comp. warning) I'm now wondering if that is possible or the mech. Is just trying to get more $!
Please help!
P.s. Is it normal that once I sticker the key in the ignition it would not let me pulled out?
Thanks
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post #2 of 14 Old 01-01-2015
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I had a very similar problem and still have currently, if you ever got your vehicle running if you take it to the dealer or even autozone, they can check you alternator free of charge. If the battery in your vehicle is stock, I would try just replacing it. If you look on YouTube for touareg battery replacement on YouTube you could do it yourself if you're mechanically inclined. And as for taking your key out. I read somewhere if you turn the key counterclockwise 3 times, and then push in the small button on the key slot with a pen it'll come out.

Good luck
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post #3 of 14 Old 01-02-2015
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You are not alone... and odds are there's nothing wrong with the alternator.

My Treg's battery typically goes dead within two weeks if the car's been standing still. Dealer's tried everything (or so they say), even replaced the battery - but to no avail. Seems there are so many electronics that continue to drain power when the car is parked that there is no real solution to the problem. Only piece of advice the dealer could give me was to make sure that I arm the alarm system when I park the Treg; apparently that puts many of the subsystems into "snooze mode".

After conferring with VW Canada, a last ditch solution by the dealer was to install (at no charge), a trickle charger under the hood with the instruction to "plug it in" if I plan on leaving the car parked for anything longer than a few days. Case in point - the Treg's been parked in the garage for almost four days now as I've been out of town during the holidays. Of course, as luck would have it, I forgot to plug-in the trickle charger. Soooo, combined with the cold snap we've had over the past few days, she wouldn't turn over this morning. Lights would come on, and starter would turn a few times very slowly then give up... Luckily, this has happened so many times that I bought a portable booster pack.

As I've stated in another thread, not exactly what I was expecting when I bought an over $60k vehicle. Heck, I remember leaving my old '84 Fox wagon parked under a snowbank for a few months then having it start on the first try!

EDIT: There's an electric servo that holds the key in the ignition, so yeah - without any power you won't be able to pull it out. Had never heard of the trick that PinkCadillac mentioned, so you might want to give that a try. Also, if the battery goes completely dead (as yours appears to have done), and the alarm was set when you parked it, get ready for 15 minutes of the alarm siren blaring once you get it started again! Don't know why you can't seem to boost it. Booster posts are located under the hood close to the windshield, on the driver's side. Negative terminal is near the wheel well, positive terminal is usually under a red plastic hinged cover. Good luck.
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post #4 of 14 Old 01-04-2015
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[QUOTE="luckyll;1033482"]You are not alone... and odds are there's nothing wrong with the alternator.

My Treg's battery typically goes dead within two weeks if the car's been standing still. Dealer's tried everything (or so they say), even replaced the battery - but to no avail. Seems there are so many electronics that continue to drain power when the car is parked that there is no real solution to the problem. Only piece of advice the dealer could give me was to make sure that I arm the alarm system when I park the Treg; apparently that puts many of the subsystems into "snooze mode".

Glad I live in balmy Nebraska! My car has set for over a month outside during the winter with no starts or driving and never have had a problem. I also must have gotten the best Varta battery off the assembly line. I replaced my original battery at ten years old. My car has never parked inside.

The easiest way to check the alternator is to start the car and disconnect the negative terminal. If car does not die alternator is doing it's job feeding the electronics. If car dies alternator sucks. PITA to disconnect battery on TRex but better than replacing a good alternator. Give it a good test and turn on blowers radio heated seats EVERYTHING!
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post #5 of 14 Old 01-04-2015
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The easiest way to check if your alternator works is to measure voltage with car not running (battery alone) and with car running. The battery voltage reading should be somewhere close to 12.5 V and with engine running you should see voltage somewhere close to 14.5 V. My numbers may not be precise, but you've got the idea. I use very cheap device - Triplett 2030-C - a very handy pocket size multimeter good for various purposes:
Triplett 2030 c Multimeter by Office Depot & OfficeMax
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post #6 of 14 Old 01-04-2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ConservativeConsumer View Post
The easiest way to check if your alternator works is to measure voltage with car not running (battery alone) and with car running. The battery voltage reading should be somewhere close to 12.5 V and with engine running you should see voltage somewhere close to 14.5 V. My numbers may not be precise, but you've got the idea. I use very cheap device - Triplett 2030-C - a very handy pocket size multimeter good for various purposes: Triplett 2030 c Multimeter by Office Depot & OfficeMax
Hi, yes but consider this. You can have an alternator that produces voltage (pressure) but no amperage (flow).

If possible, use an amp clamp with the meter to see what is going on. If a diode is blown in the alternator, this can cause an amp draw, as an example.

Another simple way to check alternator field strength is to hold a metal wrench on the back of it while the engine is running and see if there is enough magnetism to get the wrench to stick to the rear case of the alternator.

Mick
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post #7 of 14 Old 01-04-2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ConservativeConsumer View Post
The easiest way to check if your alternator works is to measure voltage with car not running (battery alone) and with car running. The battery voltage reading should be somewhere close to 12.5 V and with engine running you should see voltage somewhere close to 14.5 V. My numbers may not be precise, but you've got the idea. I use very cheap device - Triplett 2030-C - a very handy pocket size multimeter good for various purposes:
Triplett 2030 c Multimeter by Office Depot & OfficeMax
Thanks. My battery generally reads about 12v + not running and never less than 14v when running. My method is pretty old school from when I had a 1968 mustang, but will work if you don't have a meter. Suppose if you test under load everything on, meter may read differently. I like old school because it will show under load (everything on) real performance of alternator-car continues to run or doesn't.
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post #8 of 14 Old 01-04-2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by volkswagendude View Post
I think the real question here is, are there any new cars out there today, that can handle 3 weeks without driving them, (alarm armed of course , ), without the battery going dead?
Agree. Would bet my performance would be different in Minot North Dakota, or Canada. It can get severely cold here but can't recall colder than -21 then very short term . In the ten years I have owned the car have boosted many but never had a dead battery. Luck? Guess I didn't get one of the worse of the worst that came off the line battery and Vw.
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post #9 of 14 Old 01-04-2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by volkswagendude View Post
I think the real question here is, are there any new cars out there today, that can handle 3 weeks without driving them, (alarm armed of course , ), without the battery going dead?
I have parked my car for over a month and it started right up without any hassles.

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post #10 of 14 Old 01-14-2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by volkswagendude View Post
I think the real question here is, are there any new cars out there today, that can handle 3 weeks without driving them, (alarm armed of course , ), without the battery going dead?
Yes, plenty of them. As I've mentioned in another thread, we've got a whole fleet of trucks, cars and SUVs at work that often sit for weeks (even months) at a time; even moreso in winter. Mostly North American vehicles, with a few Japanese and Korean ones... No European vehicles. Rarely do we even need to boost them to get them started.
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