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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Battery keeps going flat but the alternator's fine

Hiya,

I seem to have a problem with a 206 ('52 plate) where the battery keeps dying after a week or so. I charge it, take it for a long run to keep it charged, and the next day it's dead. So far it's been okay but this morning it stuggled to start (it did start after the engine turning over several times). I was thinking that the alternator wasn't charging the battery (as the digital clock reset when I turned the car on) - central locking still worked as normal, wipers too. I tested the alternator by running the engine and disconnecting the battery and the car didn't cut off, so that rules out the alternator, I think.... but the battery will still keep running flat (the battery's new btw - tested with a second new battery from my old car). I'm not sure what's causing it. This has only happened a few times in the last month.

Any help would be appreciated and I'll look at it with my dad when it stops raining at some point this week.

Thank you :)
 

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Omar Ebrahim said:
Hiya,

I seem to have a problem with a 206 ('52 plate) where the battery keeps dying after a week or so. I charge it, take it for a long run to keep it charged, and the next day it's dead. So far it's been okay but this morning it stuggled to start (it did start after the engine turning over several times). I was thinking that the alternator wasn't charging the battery (as the digital clock reset when I turned the car on) - central locking still worked as normal, wipers too. I tested the alternator by running the engine and disconnecting the battery and the car didn't cut off, so that rules out the alternator, I think....
Unfortunately no it doesn't
but the battery will still keep running flat (the battery's new btw - tested with a second new battery from my old car). I'm not sure what's causing it. This has only happened a few times in the last month.

Any help would be appreciated and I'll look at it with my dad when it stops raining at some point this week.

Thank you :)
Well firstly as I said above, that doesn't rule out the alternator. The only way to rule out the alternator is to check the voltage its kicking out or go to an auto electrician to check.

If the battery is new and its 100% not the alternator then you must have a drain somewhere. To be perfectly honest, with those symptoms I would of said its more than likely the alt or the battery itself.
Go to an auto eletrician, they should be able to test the battery and alt in situ and tell you in minutes which ones has died (albeit not completely, but something is def on the way out)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi thanks for replying :)

I have a multimeter - when I find it I'll test the voltage of the battery and alternator. Reading this carbasics.co.uk/How_to_test_your_alternator.htm (I'm not allowed to post links yet) the alternator has to run more than 12v to overcome the resistance in the battery. Both batteries that I've used are new - hardly used.
 

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roy_newell said:
Alts should read around 14-15volts when charging properly if I remember correctly
alternator charging normal upto 14.5v, over that is considered overcharging:thumb: :thumb:
 

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Omar Ebrahim said:
Hiya,

I seem to have a problem with a 206 ('52 plate) where the battery keeps dying after a week or so. I charge it, take it for a long run to keep it charged, and the next day it's dead. So far it's been okay but this morning it stuggled to start (it did start after the engine turning over several times). I was thinking that the alternator wasn't charging the battery (as the digital clock reset when I turned the car on) - central locking still worked as normal, wipers too. I tested the alternator by running the engine and disconnecting the battery and the car didn't cut off, so that rules out the alternator, I think.... but the battery will still keep running flat (the battery's new btw - tested with a second new battery from my old car). I'm not sure what's causing it. This has only happened a few times in the last month.

Any help would be appreciated and I'll look at it with my dad when it stops raining at some point this week.

Thank you :)
Take the battery to a local garage and get them to test it, the recent abnormal artic weather has been killing batteries, I ve had to replace 10 already this winter for friends & neighbours. Also cheap new batteries eg. banner; have in my experience not been the best (our garage replaced FOUR within manufacturer warranty, to the transit fleet in a one year period) hence the local motor factors stopped stocking them!:nod: :nod:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Where is the alternator on a 206? I can't see it on the top. Are the French being awkward and putting it at the bottom?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It's under the power steering pump.
peugeot206cc.co.uk/repair-206/206/images/b/b1bk1w1d.gif (can't post links yet)

Probably not the easiest thing to get to then? I don't know a lot about cars as you can tell.
 

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Doesn't look too bad. But it looks like you'll probably have to disconnect the engine mount and do a raise/lower jobbie on the engine to get the access
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I've tested the voltage across the battery with the car running and it reads 13.85v which I suppose is normal?

Considering it's in the middle and at the front, would taking off the font bumper and then the radiator get to it easier? I don't have anything to lift the engine with...
 

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Omar Ebrahim said:
I've tested the voltage across the battery with the car running and it reads 13.85v which I suppose is normal?

Considering it's in the middle and at the front, would taking off the font bumper and then the radiator get to it easier? I don't have anything to lift the engine with...
Voltage sounds ok yeah.

Taking the front bumper and rad off is completely overkill for alternator. And to be fair, it probably still wouldn't make it any easier. Your main barrier will be the sidewall which is why you'll need to raise/lower it.

And as for anything to lift engine with. Don't worry, you don't need a hoist or anything crazy. Just a trolley jack and a block of wood. Stick said trolley jack under engine with block of wood on top. Jack up to engine and make sure it seems relatively secure. Then loosen engine mount, then raise and lower trolley jack accordingly always paying attention to other engine mounts :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hiya,

It's probably not worth me digging up the engine if the alternator's fine... 'cause knowing me I'll screw it up. :shrug:

The rear windscreen heater is dodgy - only the top half works. Checked all fuses as I don't know what fuse is what and they're all fine. I'm going to take this fuse out just in case this is causing a short circuit. I was speaking to someone at work today and he says it could be the earthing strap? Not really sure what this is (I'm assuming that it dissipates any electrical energy onto the car to the ground?) or where it is on the engine. I really don't know what's slowly causing the battery to die :confused: :confused: :confused:
 

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Omar Ebrahim said:
Hiya,

It's probably not worth me digging up the engine if the alternator's fine... 'cause knowing me I'll screw it up. :shrug:

The rear windscreen heater is dodgy - only the top half works. Checked all fuses as I don't know what fuse is what and they're all fine. I'm going to take this fuse out just in case this is causing a short circuit. I was speaking to someone at work today and he says it could be the earthing strap? Not really sure what this is (I'm assuming that it dissipates any electrical energy onto the car to the ground?) or where it is on the engine. I really don't know what's slowly causing the battery to die :confused: :confused: :confused:
Have you had the battery tested yet? Alt sounds fine so only thing remaining is battery. I know you say its new, but get it checked, your car could be killing em :S

And the rear windscreen demister. That will be the bottom half connection has gone dodgy. Either its come apart or just corroded. Have a look around the edge of the rear screen. I've seen the bits on older cars so not sure exactly what this one is like. The window surround may even cover it?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I'll get the battery tested when I get the chance to, may get the other one tested too. One was bought only 6 months ago, the other was bought at about the same time. If one of the contacts have come off from the rear windscreen I'll leave it - I only need to see out of the top half.
 

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Omar Ebrahim said:
I'll get the battery tested when I get the chance to, may get the other one tested too. One was bought only 6 months ago, the other was bought at about the same time. If one of the contacts have come off from the rear windscreen I'll leave it - I only need to see out of the top half.
LOL, I didn't mean come off, just gone bad. Could be as simple as clean with a wire brush and its fixed. But I do like the mentality, as long as the tops ok, lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
I've taken a look at the battery (opened up the 6 cells) and there's only a thin layer (about 5mm deep) of battery water at the bottom of the top chamber. I can see each anode and cathode popping into the chamber as per this diagram:


Is the battery water supposed to cover the anodes and cathodes? My dad says it's fine but I say otherwise...
I'm also charging it as it's completely dead, same with the other one.
 

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Omar Ebrahim said:
I've topped up the water inside and hopefully should be okay once charged...
I've never actually opened the cells myself. But one thing I do remember is the water in a battery should be distilled so did you boil it and let it cool before hand? I don't know how much difference it makes, just remember my dad using that about 15 years ago, lol Some things just stick with you
 
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