Question about 1996 Lincoln Town Car

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I have used a test lite from positive side of battery to unhooked positive cable, will this work same as an ammeter in series?

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Hi. no this set up will not work in place of an AMP meter. The meter is fused and can handle the amp draw of the circuit being checked. The test light can not read amp draw nor can it handle high amperage the wire size and bulb are to small.

Posted on Aug 27, 2010

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1 Answer

I have a new battery but its dead all ready how do i find were the short is at


Unhook the battery on the positive side. Use a test light and hook it to the positive battery post,and touch the unhooked positive cable. If you have a draw,it will light up. The best way to narrow it down from there,is to start pulling fuses..one at a time..,untill the test light goes out.Then check the manual to see whatt that fuse runs power to,and go from there.

Sep 26, 2012 | 2003 Mitsubishi Outlander

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Battery is good, alternator is good. when car is off the battery is drained


  1. Follow these steps.
    Remove the negative side battery cable from the negative battery terminal.
  2. Connect the black wire to the com input on the multimeter and the red wire to the 10A or 20A input on the multimeter. the meter needs to be able to read at least a 2 or 3 amps for this test to work. Connecting the red wire to the mA input on the multimeter won't work and could damage the meter.
  3. Attach a multimeter(set the dial on the multimeter to measure Amps as per multimeters instructions) between the negative cable and the negative battery post. Wait a few seconds to several minutes for the car to go into sleep mode - i.e. when you make the contact with the ammeter, the cars computer systems "wake up". After a bit of time they will go back to "sleep".
  4. If the ammeter is reading over 25-50 milliamps, something is using too much battery power.
  5. Go to the fuse panel(s) and remove fuses, one at a time. Pull the main fuses (higher amp ratings)last. Perform the same steps for relays found in the fuse panel. Sometimes relay contacts can fail to release causing a drain. Be sure to observe the ammeter after pulling each fuse or relay.
  6. Watch for the ammeter to drop to acceptable drain. The fuse that reduces the drain is the draw. Consult the owners' manual or service manual to find what circuits are on that fuse.
  7. Check each device (circuit) on that fuse. Stop each lamp, heater, etc. to find the drain.
  8. Repeat steps 1&2 to test your repair. The ammeter will tell you exact numbers.
  9. You can also try unhooking the big wire from your alternator. The alternator can sometimes have a shorted diode that can cause amps to flow through the alternator's power cable and through the shorted diode and into the case and through the bolts and back to the negative battery terminal. This will drain a battery in a hurry.Make sure to read the ammeter before and after unplugging your Alternator

Aug 09, 2012 | 2000 Ford Windstar

1 Answer

I disconnect the positive battery cable and put my test -lite between the pos side of battery and positive cable and the lite comes on.does that mean that i have a short? i have a 2000 chevy venture.


That means you did nothing

All you did was create a voltage drop
across the bulb in the test light

Forget test lights,study OHM'S Law &
Basic Electricity

You Have to use a Volt Meter & then learn to
use an oscilloscope to work on todays
technology

What would indicate to you that something was
shorted? You applied 12.6 V to a test light & grounded it
& it worked,telling you not much, other than the bulb in
the test light is okey

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2 Answers

My range rover battery keeps going flat after 3 days of no use, Help


You have what we call a parastic load aka key off drain.Disconnect the negative battery cable from its post and put an ammeter in series with post and cable.
Then start pulling fuses until voltage returns to normal.You can do this with a test light too, however the ammeter is more accurate. I'm not sure what is the amperage draw limit for your vehicle is but as a guide line figure at about a half a volt or 0.50 amps.

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1 Answer

Short circuit in dome light circuit 1987 toyota celica gt


Sometimes the dome lite is turned on manually by rotating the headlamp switch knob, try turning it off with the knob. Best time to check for light left on, is in the dark.
Hopefully pulling the dome lite fuse will stop the battery drain.

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The battery keeps draining and it sort of stutters when i go to turn on the engine. It charges right back up when i jump it but the minute i turn off the car the battery is drained again. the battery light...


This may be over-simplified, but to find the battery drain: Remove the positive battery cable from the battery and insert an ammeter in series beween battery and cable. If something is draining the battery, it will show on the ammeter. Remove fuses one-by-one until you see a substantial reduction in the ammeter reading. That will pinpoint the circuit that is draining the battery. Then troubleshoot until you find the faulty component, wiring harness, etc. Remember there will always be a little bit of drain because of ECM, BCM, radio memory and stuff like that.


Oct 06, 2008 | 1992 Chevrolet Corvette

1 Answer

2002 hyundai sonata headlights


GENERATOR OUTPUT LINE VOLTAGE DROP TEST

This test determines the condition of the wiring from the generator "B" terminal to the battery (+) terminal (including the fusible link). 1. Be sure to check the following before testing: a. Generator installation and wiring connections b. Generator drive belt tension c. Fusible link d. Abnormal noises from the generator while the engine is running. 2. Turn the ignition switch to the OFF position. 3. Disconnect the negative battery cable. 4. Disconnect the generator output wire from the generator "B" terminal. Connect a DC test ammeter with a range of 0-100A in series between the "B" terminal and the disconnected output wire. (Connect the (+) lead of the ammeter to the "B" terminal. Connect the (-) lead of the ammeter to the disconnected output wire.) An inductive-type ammeter which enables measurements to be taken without disconnecting the generator output wire is recommended. Using this equipment will lessen the possibility of a voltage drop caused by a loose "B" terminal connection. 5. Connect a digital-type voltmeter between the generator "B" terminal and the battery (+) terminal. (Connect the (+) lead of the voltmeter to the "B" terminal. Connect the (-) lead of the voltmeter to the battery (+) cable.) 6. Reconnect the negative battery cable. 7. Connect a tachometer or the scan tool. 8. Start the engine. 9. With the engine running at approx. 2500 rpm, turn the headlights and other lights on and off to adjust the generator load on the ammeter slightly above 30A. Limit: max. 0.3V When the generator output is high and the value displayed on the ammeter does not decrease to 30A, set the value to 40A. Read the value displayed on the voltmeter. In this case the limit becomes max. 0.4V. 10. If the value displayed on the voltmeter is still above the limit, a fault in the generator output wire may exist. Check the wiring between the generator "B" terminal and the battery (+) terminal (including fusible link). If a terminal is not sufficiently tight or if the harness has become discolored due to overheating, repair, then test again. 11. After the test, run the engine at idle. 12. Turn off all lights and turn the ignition switch to the OFF position. 13. Disconnect the tachometer or the scan tool. 14. Disconnect the negative battery cable. 15. Disconnect the ammeter and voltmeter. 16. Connect the generator output wire to the generator "B" terminal. 17. Connect the negative battery cable.

Jun 05, 2008 | Hyundai Motor 2002 Sonata

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