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Smells like burnt wiring

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Old 12-06-2010, 05:18 AM
  #1  
soldierstang
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Default Smells like burnt wiring

Here is my problem. I bought an '87 LX about a month ago and 2 days after I bought it, the battery died. I tried jumping it, but the battery was so dead it didn't have enough juice. I bought a new battery which was one step above the one that was in it. I got the battery back to the car, hooked up the positive cable and as soon as I touched the negative cable to the battery post, it sparked and started burning up one of the wires connected to starter relay/solenoid. Does anyone know what could cause this and what the fix would be? I really would like to get my car back up and running when I get home from Iraq.
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Old 12-06-2010, 07:22 AM
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wayne613
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Sounds like you have a short somewhere or a device thatīs shorted that isnīt actually fused. Which is a car fire in the making. No way to tell from the description.

If your dead set on troubleshooting it yourself you will have to narrow down the cause and pray nothing further is FUBAR. Get a multimeter and verify the short, once you do that start by pulling the main fusebox lead (If it were something that was actually fused it should have blown but do this just in case). Then after that start pulling the hot leads off things and checking.

If itīs melting the solenoid lead thatīd be the first thing Iīd pull the hot from and test. And of course replace any wiring thatīs damaged.
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Old 12-06-2010, 07:31 AM
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Not sure how much electrical knowledge you possess, but verifying the short is simple. Any digital multimeter you can buy will have a mode for itīs resistance measurement that will give an audible tone for when itīs at 0 resistance. i.e. short. This is usually used to let you verify if a cable is broken, contact point on a connector for the correct lead, etc..

Your other option is to bring it some place to have it looked at, which is a crap shoot of course.

If you need more background information, check the the12volt.com, while itīs more for installs, thereīs tons of information on how your carīs electrical system is hooked up, and how to diagnose problems.
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