Engine bay cleaned, now battery light is on. Suggestions?

281pony

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Aug 31, 2003
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i made this in the 4.6 section, but its for my cobra so ill make another here.

i just bought my 03 cobra yesterday, engine was sorta dirty, so today i took it to be cleaned. the only reason i took it to be cleaned, was so I didnt encounter this type of bull****.

they left the car running, sprayed on their component, then steam cleaned it off. took off from there, went to eat. came outside, started it, made it about 2 miles down the road, and the battery light started flashing on and off a few times. 1/2 mile further and it stuck on permanently. at idle the light stays on, when it goes over 1500 rpm's in neutral/moving it goes off.

seems like the alt, so when i got home, i used our blower to try and blow the water away from it. did that, didnt fix it. let it sit for a few hours now, doing the same thing.

what do you guys suggest i do here? wait longer for it to dry?

i called the place who did this, i got the run around. first time i called he said oh its got to be the battery connections/terminals that are dirty. i said its dry and clean. then it was the "main bearing" in the alt, then it was my belt is slipping, just the usual run around bull**** because he is trying to avoid repair on what he did.

let me know what you think. im really happy with the car aside from this :rolleyes:
 
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TheCrazy1

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Sounds like the alternator isn't putting out enough juice at low rpm. If it were me, I'd put a volt meter on it and go from there. It's possible that they got the alternator saturated, so you might want to wait a few more days and see if it clears up. Chances are that the place that cleaned it isn't going to admit responsibility for it, even if it caused it. Good luck with it and congratulaions on your new Cobra!
 

COBRA90GT

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Definiately check out the voltage with a multimeter!

This is main reason I'm not a big fan of power washing the engine bay. It can cause little headaches like this and electrical gremlins are the worst.

BTW - You should also check your coil packs/spark plugs. Chances are good that there might be a litlte water and/or rust, corrosion where the spark plug threads are at. You'll want to replace those spark plugs unless you want to deal with seized/rusted threads.
 

Uncle Meat

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Here's what I think....

If it had done this shortly after the engine bay cleaning and then went away once the engine came up to full operating temp and had been driven for 20 minutes or so... I would have chalked it up to a wet belt (belt slip). The 03/04 generates a LOT of heat under the hood and it doesn't take very long even under normal driving conditions to evaporate ANY moisture left from the engine bay cleaning.

Since this problem continues to happen your alternator is most likely shot. The incidences of bad alternators on 03 & 04 Cobra's is higher than the GT's because of the added under hood temps. Maybe the water that got ingested into the alternator was just enough to push an already failing unit over the edge, or it may have been the direct cause. :shrug:.

All you can do is check to make sure all the connections for the electrical system are clean & tight and then put it on a multimeter to see what she's putting out.

Do you have any friends with a Predator by chance? I'll bet the ECM has thrown a code and they could scan it for you.

If I was a betting man... you'll be buying a new alternator soon and they ain't cheap!

U.M.
 

281pony

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i know some locals with a predator i can probably ask.

the car is under warranty still, would something like this be covered under pre-mature failure?
 

281pony

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priced it on fordparts.com (first place i found it out of 2 stores) and it looks like its 220 bucks.

if i have to pay this, like i had to pay for my bent rims the shop ruined, and everything else ive been screwed on, ill be taking further action. i paid someone 40 dollars to clean my engine bay (took them less then 5 minutes) so that I WOULDNT DO THIS. i shouldnt have to eat another 200+ dollars now because of their neglegence spraying the engine.

i remember typing similar to this all too well from my bent rims and everything else :rolleyes:
 

Uncle Meat

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281pony said:
i know some locals with a predator i can probably ask.

the car is under warranty still, would something like this be covered under pre-mature failure?
Sure.... as long as you don't tell them about the recent steam cleaning. :D
281pony said:
priced it on fordparts.com (first place i found it out of 2 stores) and it looks like its 220 bucks.
If you do end up having to buy one out of pocket let me know. I can put you in touch with a specific Ford parts guy who can get you ANY Ford part for 10% over cost.

U.M.
 

281pony

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would you please pm me with that? i may be ordering one. i really want to drive my car! im going to take off the alt in awhile while i change the oil and see if i can dry it out and go from there.

id really appreciate that guys name. thanks for all your help and insite through my search for the car. :nice: i feel like an idiot starting over each time with a new car and not knowing how to work on it/little specs, its nice to have some solid assistance along the way.

/asskiss off :D
 

mkkrs1

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what's your mileage on the car. I ran into a problem with mine. My 03 has 29K on it, went to start it and dead battery, got it running and Alt. was not charging. Took it to the dealership for warranty. I bought this car for the dealership used back in 7/05 . factory warranty had expired even though the mileage is still in limits they go from when the car was first purchased, which in my case was 9/02 Luckily I got extended warranty when I bought it so this covered the alternator. I had to pay $100 deductible.

mike
89-718 convert
03 cobra
 

281pony

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11k on the car.

i just took it for a 45 minute drive. first start up, light was on. backed out of driveway, went to 1300 rpm in first. light out.

never came on again after that. sat in line getting food, drive it very slowly though the park, felt some boost in second gear :D then again. consistant cruising, ect.

so im assuming its almost back to normal from being saturated? i think if the regulator was fried, it wouldnt stay off all the sudden now like this, would it?
 

Price1

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Glad that it appears your alternator issue may be OK. FWIW, a lot of us use Simple Green for engine cleaning. It is non-corrisive to aluminum and does a great job sprayed on full strength. Just let it sit and use LOW pressure water to rinse off. That way, YOU can direct where the water igoes and keep it away from the alternator. And, a low pressure water rinse will not, in most cases, worm its way into electrical connectors, etc. After rinsing, dry off with a cloth and things look good. Then, use armor-all or a similar product on the hoses and plastic parts. Also, I use steel wool to clean up the aluminum and keep it looking less-corroded.

Takes some time but the process eliminates problems with steam cleaning. And, I'm not even sure why anyone would even offer steam cleaning with all the electrical componnents in today's cars. Just way too risky.

Good luck and you will LOVE the car......
 

281pony

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hey, an update somewhat. it has stopped now for several days.

seems like it dried out finally. yes, i really do love the car. i constantly think about driving it, but i refuse to take it to work (overnights) plus lots of customer traffic, dont want to worry about it getting messed with.

this weekend i definately plan to go out for a nice drive though. should be placing a few orders for some parts as well.
 

Uncle Meat

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281pony said:
this weekend i definately plan to go out for a nice drive though. should be placing a few orders for some parts as well.
So... spill the beans! What exactly are you planning on purchasing first? This IS a bone stock Cobra, right? I'm guessing a CAI and cat-back maybe? That's good for 40 RWHP gain right there!

U.M.