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Battery Cables


Bronson

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Has any one had problems with the side post batterys and positive battery cable?

I have a 96 and 97 both have had issues with the battery and cable, 97 has been replaced twice. Dealership Service Tech explains that the positive post on the battery corroades and the acid leaks onto the cable to the point that the car won't start.

I've had the battery replace first, was able to start the car and drive but only until the car runs the battery all the way down. To replace cable at dealership with labor $300.00, whats up with that?

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If the car runs the battery all the way down you needed an Alternator, not a cable. Cable is fine if car runs. Also, get an Optima battery and you won't have to worry about leeking acid again.

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The battery cable isn't just a length of braided wire with a connector at each end. It's a wiring harness with several smaller wires and connections in addition to the main battery cable. I had mine replaced by an independent mechanic a little over a year ago. The cost was $125 for the part and $127.50 for labor.

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Happiness is owning a Cadillac with no codes.

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down. To replace cable at dealership with labor $300.00, whats up with that?

Well, you could attempt the replacement yourself, and then you will find out why the labour charge is so high. On many of the Cadillac models with the Northstar engine, the positive cable will run from the battery to the valve cover area, then it will branch off one way to the starter "under" the intake manifold, and the other branch will run down by the alternator, and then continue on to the other side of the vehicle where it will tie in with a power/relay center. It's a lot of work.

Ian

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Ever hear of cleaning the cable terminals? It's

something you should do regularly, and a lot

less expensive than replacing the whole cable.

What's with this leaking acid? Batteries

manufactuered within the last three decades

are sealed. Sounds like you helped your

mechanic catch up on his boat payments.

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The reason I brought all of this up was; the battery in my caddy of course is delco product and the tech explained that they have problems with the side post leaking on that style battery thus the corrosion of the cable. I have no problem paying for the labor to replace even at the dealership but this seems to me to be a design defect of some kind. I replaced the cable on my Deville twice in less than 18 months. Second time the Tech schruged his shoulders with a real inteligent look on his face. Is there any resolve for using gunine GM parts?

Don't even want to think about having to replace same on newer model with battery under the back seat. I have heard about battery leaks with them eating a hole through the floor board............................

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Virtually all batteries will eventually leak. The side post batteries have a more difficult sealing problem then the top post batteries, as the terminals are below the level of acid in the battery. When the side post seal starts to fail the acid will start its slow seep and begin the corrosion process.

While I am not familiar with all of the battery cables that may be used on Cadillacs, commonly they are a negative heavy cable with a smaller local ground attached, and stacked positive cables.

Except for the positive cable that runs under the intake to the starter, they are all very easy to replace.

You can get replacement cables at most auto parts supply stores. Just match the length, cable weight and end styles. It is far less costly that a dealer replacement and every bit as good.

As for the cable that runs under the intake, the battery terminal end could be cut off and a new end put on it.

As a preventative measure clean the cable ends, at the battery, at least once a year. Also clean the battery terminals at the same time. Always remove the negative terminal first to avoid any shorting out with a wrench.

This usually will take about 20-30 minutes, and anyone who does their own basic car needs will not have any trouble doing this. Use soap and water with a brass parts cleaning brush. Always flush with plenty of water.

After cleaning, to reduce any corrosion between yearly cleanings, wipe the battery terminals and the cable ends that attach to the battery, with a good coating of dielectric grease.

If you start seeing signs of acid seepage, replace the battery, before it eats up the cables and the battery support below it.

I have replaced numerous batteries in my cars, all high quality batteries. Some have lasted for over 10 years before starting to fail, others have lasted no more than 8 months before leaking or shorting out.

-George

Drive'em like you own 'em. - ....................04 DTS............................

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>Virtually all batteries will eventually leak. <

George, I'm not sure that claim is entirely accurate. The Optima line of batteries (that I'm running in my STS, and a few other cars) were designed NOT to leak, and in fact are used in the Presidential fleet, after qualifying tests which required a direct hit from multiple high powered rounds. ( I know an engineer that was involved with the project). The Optima battery not only did not leak, it continued to crank the engine! ;)

'93 STS.. opened, dropped, wide...fast.

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While we are on the topic I had a chance to clean my battery connections the other day when I eliminated the AC Compressor with a shorter belt and they were very corroded with white acid. I did a quick job on them but need to do it again. It looked like the acid got into the copper with where the lug connects to it, and I am a little concerned about that. I used to use a baking soda mix with water on the battery connections years ago and then flush it with water has anyone ever heard that? I would like to neutralize this acid. Thanks, Mike

Early on sailors navigated by the stars at night and the North star became the symbol for finding ones way home. Once you know where the Northstar is you can point your ship in the right direction to get home. So the star became a symbol for finding ones way home or more symbolically even finding ones path in life.

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copper with where the? Sorry, copper wire where the lug connects

Early on sailors navigated by the stars at night and the North star became the symbol for finding ones way home. Once you know where the Northstar is you can point your ship in the right direction to get home. So the star became a symbol for finding ones way home or more symbolically even finding ones path in life.

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I used to use a baking soda mix with water on the battery connections years ago and then flush it with water has anyone ever heard that? I would like to neutralize this acid. Thanks, Mike

I use that method all the time. Works great. Infact I am going to do that tomorrow on the garden tractor.

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I used to use a baking soda mix with water on the battery connections years ago and then flush it with water has anyone ever heard that? I would like to neutralize this acid. Thanks, Mike

I use that method all the time. Works great. Infact I am going to do that tomorrow on the garden tractor.

Thanks Larry for confirming the use of baking soda! Mike

Early on sailors navigated by the stars at night and the North star became the symbol for finding ones way home. Once you know where the Northstar is you can point your ship in the right direction to get home. So the star became a symbol for finding ones way home or more symbolically even finding ones path in life.

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.... I used to use a baking soda mix with water on the battery connections years ago and then flush it with water has anyone ever heard that? I would like to neutralize this acid. Thanks, Mike

I had to nurse along a bad battery in my S-10 for a year by doing the baking soda bath. Mix a pancake batter texture of baking soda / water and apply it as deep into the cable as you can get it (under the insulation). If you see the mixture turning green, you are doing some good.

Be sure to flush [make that FLOOD!] with clear water as the baking soda can also damage the wires / terminals.

Repeat until you no longer see the soda mix turn green on the terminals / cable ends.

Understand, this is not a fix for a battery that is leaking electrolyte or a malfunctioning battery vent system (caps). This is a bandaid!

Jim

Drive your car.

Use your cell phone.

CHOOSE ONE !

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>Virtually all batteries will eventually leak. <

George, I'm not sure that claim is entirely accurate. The Optima line of batteries (that I'm running in my STS, and a few other cars) were designed NOT to leak, and in fact are used in the Presidential fleet, after qualifying tests which required a direct hit from multiple high powered rounds. ( I know an engineer that was involved with the project). The Optima battery not only did not leak, it continued to crank the engine! ;)

Hi Bob,

I have never heard of a battery that can take direct rounds and not be destroyed. I have a 40 caliber Beretta that I believe would easily tear apart any normal automotive battery, with a few hits. While this is a pretty powerful handgun, it can't match a high-powered rifle hit.

Were the batteries just getting nicked after going through sheet metal and bouncing of other solid metal in the engine compartment maybe? And so would not be getting the full force of the round.

-George

PS

I just replaced the battery in my truck last week. It was in a marine battery box to help protect it from engine heat and keep a neat installation. My wife went to start it on day and it was dead, I checked it and the seal around the positive side post had failed, you could see the tracks directly from it. The battery box had contained the acid though so it was a pretty easy cleanup. Battery was Sears Gold with 9 years on it, so I got my moneys worth but I hate a leaking battery.

Drive'em like you own 'em. - ....................04 DTS............................

DTS_Signature.jpg

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[i have never heard of a battery that can take direct rounds and not be destroyed. I

Yep, the Optima survived a DIRECT hit from a M-16 burst, standard military rounds.

'93 STS.. opened, dropped, wide...fast.

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Has any one had problems with the side post batterys and positive battery cable?

I have a 96 and 97 both have had issues with the battery and cable, 97 has been replaced twice. Dealership Service Tech explains that the positive post on the battery corroades and the acid leaks onto the cable to the point that the car won't start.

I've had the battery replace first, was able to start the car and drive but only until the car runs the battery all the way down. To replace cable at dealership with labor $300.00, whats up with that?

Back on track. I think it's the alternator too but I think there is a bigger problem. Just the impression i get and that problem would be the quality of work at the dealership. These kinds of stories aren't all that unusual if you're a frequent visitor to this site. I've had my share of dealership folleys and so have many others here. Best advice I can give is ask around and make a visit to a few independent shops. I think you might be surprised at the results. Honestly my mechanic doesn't know every inch of the caddy but will tell me so..... yeah really. So I come on here when he gets stuck and I get the info for him. He knows a lot of tricks, goes the extra mile( does the little things), and most importantly he's straight up honest. A little side note, I always tip him so he knows how important he is. You'd be amazed how far that will go.

-kg

"Burns" rubber

" I've never considered myself to be all that conservative, but it seems the more liberal some people get the more conservative I become. "

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[ Best advice I can give is ask around and make a visit to a few independent shops. I think you might be surprised at the results. Honestly my mechanic doesn't know every inch of the caddy but will tell me so..... yeah really. So I come on here when he gets stuck and I get the info for him. He knows a lot of tricks, goes the extra mile( does the little things), and most importantly he's straight up honest. A little side note, I always tip him so he knows how important he is. You'd be amazed how far that will go.

-kg

I never herd of tipping a mechanic. Is that common?

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I never herd of tipping a mechanic. Is that common?

Most mechanics work on an hourly rate that i know of. Basicly if he's not working on your car he's working on another. Makes no difference to him. Tipping a mechanic is almost unheard of I'm pretty sure...... makes me kind of stick out from the crowd eh? Whenever I'm in a pinch it's amazing how he always has time for me. And don't we all like to feel and be rewarded for our efforts. I don't just tell Dave (mech) how awesome he is, I show him.

-kg

206,000 miles

"Burns" rubber

" I've never considered myself to be all that conservative, but it seems the more liberal some people get the more conservative I become. "

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>Virtually all batteries will eventually leak. <

George, I'm not sure that claim is entirely accurate. The Optima line of batteries (that I'm running in my STS, and a few other cars) were designed NOT to leak, and in fact are used in the Presidential fleet, after qualifying tests which required a direct hit from multiple high powered rounds. ( I know an engineer that was involved with the project). The Optima battery not only did not leak, it continued to crank the engine! ;)

Hi Bob,

I have never heard of a battery that can take direct rounds and not be destroyed. I have a 40 caliber Beretta that I believe would easily tear apart any normal automotive battery, with a few hits. While this is a pretty powerful handgun, it can't match a high-powered rifle hit.

Were the batteries just getting nicked after going through sheet metal and bouncing of other solid metal in the engine compartment maybe? And so would not be getting the full force of the round.

-George

PS

I just replaced the battery in my truck last week. It was in a marine battery box to help protect it from engine heat and keep a neat installation. My wife went to start it on day and it was dead, I checked it and the seal around the positive side post had failed, you could see the tracks directly from it. The battery box had contained the acid though so it was a pretty easy cleanup. Battery was Sears Gold with 9 years on it, so I got my moneys worth but I hate a leaking battery.

George, just to be more clear on the subject of acid batteries and thier tendancy to leak, the Optima is a spiral wound gel filled design. The intention was to limit leakage and retain structural integrity. That was apparantly successful after full penatration by a .223 round.

I guess the moral of the story is some leakage is possible in any battery, if the conditions are extreme enough. The main reason I'm a fan of Optima batteries is not only that they hold together in extreme conditions (such as a wreck), but they also do not outgass, which alone can cause long term degradation of sensitive electrical connections in an underhood environment these days. One good example is under the well sealed hood of a Cadillac in hot summer weather. Just the fumes alone from a standard design battery, over time can contribute to electrical problems... Not to mention actual seepage of acid.

'93 STS.. opened, dropped, wide...fast.

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Well here we go fellas, Tipping, yes tipping is something I do when I feel the service and what my perception of quality work has been performed. I'm the one who started these posts and do believe that the perception of quality in this case basically stinks. Those guys at GM had to have some idea, come on now, lets make a battery cable that hooks up to several things and when the battery starts to leak or emit fumes that deteriorate the cable to the point nothing works and cost a fortune to replace. I know most of you and myself included have had to deal with battery cables and leaking batterys on most of the cars you have owned at one time or another, and in a very warm climate even more often. The lack of dealing with the customer's perception is at the dealership, they know whats going on, how many batterys and positive cables for a northstar engine do you think they sell in a year. If the Dealership replaced the Sidepost "delco" battery and cable at the same time with "$300.00 gunine GM parts & labor" and in less that 18 months the post is leaking, the cable is shot, and they won't stand behind it. At this point my perception of them is mud and tipping is a city in China!

Tipping, oh yes I do, and often. Balance and rotate tires, change the oil and filter, wash and wax, I recently had the muffer upgrade done that is described on this site. The tech let me stand right there in the bay with him and explain how I wanted the instalation done, he did a great job and yes I tipped him too.

Fix it, fix it right and stand behind your work, deal with the perception.

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