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2000 Leggy, intermittant electrical shutdown of the car?


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11 replies to this topic

#1 rysbrnr

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Posted 09 March 2007 - 06:51 PM

Anyone ever deal with this before? My 2000 Legacy L just started doing this. It does start up and drive anywhere no problem. But randomly the car would just shut itself off and die. But in this case, the whole entire car shuts off, (headlights, radio, pwr windows, etc) as if I just removed the keys while driving. The battery is fairly new and I just had the alternator checked today. They are both deemed to be in good condition. When it dies, NOTHING comes on (dome lights, radio, heater blower) nothing! I would disconnect the battery and in a few minutes, re-connect the battery and the car would start up and drive like normal. Is there some main relay that could be going bad?
I'm not too confident about driving this car around now until I KNOW exactly what's causing this.

#2 ericem

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Posted 09 March 2007 - 07:00 PM

Maybe its a bad ground, or something is shorting out. And work done on the vehicle lately? electrical....

#3 Cougar

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Posted 09 March 2007 - 07:09 PM

The problem is most likely in these areas, assuming the battery connections have been checked already.

1. Check the fusible links for a bad connection.
2. The ignition switch is flakey.
3. The main accessory power buss has a problem.
4. The battery has a internal connection problem.

#4 nipper

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Posted 09 March 2007 - 08:17 PM

The problem is most likely in these areas, assuming the battery connections have been checked already.

1. Check the fusible links for a bad connection.
2. The ignition switch is flakey.
3. The main accessory power buss has a problem.
4. The battery has a internal connection problem.


and check the frame grounds. I had a weird charging problem that was fixed with a new battery to engine ground.

Also look at the main relay and the fuel pump relay coil. It can be one of those have a loose connector or a dying coil.

DO you have a total loss of all things electrical, or just some systems.

nipper

#5 rysbrnr

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Posted 09 March 2007 - 08:41 PM

Thanks for the responses so far guys. I'll check into the ground on the car. I know those could probably become corroded and cuase an intermittant connection.
Nipper, I lose complete power to the whole car, not just the engine shutting off. Everything that needs electricity is off (dome lights, radio, wipers, heater blower, etc)

Originally I thought it might an intermittant short inside the battery so to test this I jump started the car and disconnected the battery while it was still running...so far so good. it runs great without the battery connected and is not just running off the alternator. I take off for another drive and BAM, happens again even without the battery connected. So now I know it's not the battery.

That's when I jumped on USMB's to see what you guys thought.

#6 nipper

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Posted 09 March 2007 - 08:47 PM

that means it should be around the slow blow fuse #4 in the man fuse box under the hood Before the fuse is the alt/battery junction, after it is the ignition switch. Next time it happens, notice if your dome lights work. Also just removing and putting the fuses back in is sometimes enough to clean any corroded connectors.

nipper

#7 rysbrnr

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Posted 09 March 2007 - 08:58 PM

I'll go and check that right now and post results soon after. Thanks nipper!

#8 rysbrnr

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 01:43 PM

I checked each of the 50 AMP fuses and they were good. Next was the 100 AMP fuse. I started the car and took the back of a screwdriver and tapped around the nuts on the fuse and sure enough, the car shut off. I pulled the 100 AMP bolt-in style slow blow fuse and it had some corrosion on the curface contacts. I'm pretty sure that was the problem. used some sandpaper and a flat blade screwdriver to scrape the crusty corrosion off the contact points. To help prevent future corrosion I just slapped on a little electrolytic grease on the contact points. Problem solved. Hope this helps someone else who might have this problem. BTW, this was on a 2000 Legacy L Sedan with 197,000 miles on the odometer and still running great!

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#9 nipper

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 03:08 PM

That will do it. You may want to do that to all the big fuses, as they live a very forgotten life till something like this happens.

nipper

#10 brus brother

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 06:53 PM

damn you're good Nippy!

#11 Cougar

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 08:56 PM

I started the car and took the back of a screwdriver and tapped around the nuts on the fuse and sure enough, the car shut off.


Good job Rysbrnr. You used one of my favorite tricks to find intermittent trouble. It's amazing what you can find using a screwdriver handle. Thanks for the update.

#12 nipper

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 11:26 PM

damn you're good Nippy!


im weak with the electronics, but the basic electrical and tranny/power transmission stuff im great at :)

(clueless about car steros)

maybe i should look at finishing my degrees in this stuff :)

thanks




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