Question about Cars & Trucks
Is the electrical system negative ground?
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
SOURCE: ground wiring
you have many grounded devices in your engine. the main ones are probably the battery ground and the alternator ground. Look at your battery, there is a Positive side (Red/Power) and there is a Negative side(Black/Ground). There is a short wire that runs from the Neg side to the wall of your engine area, it has a ring connected to a bolt. thats the ground wire. there is a similar wire on the neg side of your alternator which should be easy to find if you know what to look for.
Posted on Aug 10, 2009
IF YOU UNHOOK THE NEGATIVE CLAMP FROM THE BATTERY AND YOU STILL GET A READING FROM NEGATIVE POST ON THE BATTERY TO THE FRAME YOUR METER IS COMPLETING THE 12 VOLT CIRCUIT AND THAT IS WHY YOUR READING 12 VOLTS ON YOUR METER. SOME BATTERY CABLES HAVE A SECOND GROUND FROM THE CABLE TO THE FRAME BUT IS CONNECTED AT THE BATTERY POST SUCH AS A FUSEABLE LINK WHEN YOU DISCONNECT THE CABLE YOU DISCONNECT THE GROUND. IF YOU HAD A SHORT AND READ 12 VOLTS THRU THE GROUND YOU WOULD DEFINETLY SEE SMOKE
Posted on Sep 26, 2009
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Essentially, a "ground" is an electrical connection to a common return in circuit. In automotive terms a ground is a connection to the body or other metal surface of the vehicle. The body in the RX-7 is connected to the negative terminal of the battery. Thus any connection to the body of the car is a connection to the negative terminal of the battery. Electricity flows from the positive of the battery, through the circuit to do some work, then back through the body to the battery (technically electrons actually flow from negative to positive but that is beyond the scope of this article). This is a "negative ground" system which is by far the most popular automotive ground scheme used in the automotive world. "Positive ground" systems were popular in the beginning with all car manufacturers and continued on in British vehicles until recently.
The main reason this is done is to greatly simplify the wiring of a vehicle. Since most car bodies are made of metal (at the very least almost all frames are) they provide a perfect ground plane, eliminating the need to run a separate ground wire to each circuit which almost chops the amount of wire necessary in half.
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