Recharcing the battery problem

Discussion in '348/355' started by Skiday, Oct 12, 2017.

  1. Skiday

    Skiday Rookie

    Feb 22, 2016
    13
    Isle of Wight, UK
    Full Name:
    Andrew Day
    I put my 355 into storage about 4 weeks ago and forgot to disconnect the battery. So when I went to it today it was dead as a dodo. I connected the charger to the terminals in the engine compartment, which is what the manual tells you, but when I turned the charger the door locks started going nuts! They were both constantly going like a jackhammer. I tried locking the doors, which reduced it, but they wouldn't stop till I turned the charger off. So I had to throw the disconnect switch, remove the battery panel (and that's not easy) and connect the charger directly to the battery.

    Any ideas why the door locks went off like that?

    P.S. I was at the two Ferrari museums in Modena and Maranello last week - Wow! (I was able to point out to a member of staff that an info board for a 512BB described it as having a V12 though!)
     
  2. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
    5,903
    Italian electronics.
     
  3. hjp

    hjp Formula Junior

    Feb 23, 2013
    561
    Kansas City, Mo.
    Full Name:
    Jerry Peterson
    Skiday, be careful. I know a former Fchatter who put a trickle charger on his battery while he was out of town for a few weeks. When he came back, the door lock buttons were going up and down like you described but, much worse, his security system was fried and he could not do anything with the car. He had to eventually replace the entire system from Ferrari. Very expensive and they put him through hoops to get this done. I should note he had an Odessey (spell'g??) battery that, in my understanding, should only be charged in a special way and with a special charger. I'm not sure he followed that protocol and this may have contributed to his problem
     
  4. Skiday

    Skiday Rookie

    Feb 22, 2016
    13
    Isle of Wight, UK
    Full Name:
    Andrew Day
    This is not a special battery.

    Did the person you know put the charger directly onto the battery whilst isolating the car, or did he connect to the terminals in the engine compartment? I'm thinking it must have been the later. The door locks on mine were only going for a minute. I can imagine if they went like that for a couple of weeks they would be fried. I do normally keep a trickle charger on it (in the engine bay) and have not had a problem till now. I had to connect an old and unsophisticated charger to it as my hi-tech computerised one will not start with a dead flat battery. (Don't you just hate tech that's too clever for its own good!)
     
  5. hjp

    hjp Formula Junior

    Feb 23, 2013
    561
    Kansas City, Mo.
    Full Name:
    Jerry Peterson
    Yes, I believe it was through the engine compartment terminals. Otherwise it would have been isolated and nothing would have happened. It wasn't the lock buttons that were fried, it was his entire security system, much worse.

    I made a tap from my battery up to the trunk battery disconnect switch area so I can connect a battery tender there with the battery switch off. I have also used the same battery tender through the terminals in the engine bay for long periods with no consequences as well. Tenders won't work with a totally dead battery either. I have a standard battery that can be charged normally.
     
  6. INTMD8

    INTMD8 F1 Rookie
    Silver Subscribed

    Jun 10, 2007
    4,509
    Lake Villa IL
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    James Moran
    Agreed not much of a V but they call it a 180deg v-12 because of the firing order.
     
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  8. m.stojanovic

    m.stojanovic Formula Junior
    Silver Subscribed

    Dec 22, 2011
    995
    Malaysia - KL
    Full Name:
    Miroljub Stojanovic
    When the battery is completely discharged and you connect a charger (without isolating the battery), the prevailing power supply to the car electronics is that from the charger which is unfiltered DC with a lot of "ripples", fast on-off voltage 100 times a second (50Hz x 2). Some electronics (as you noticed) cannot operate at such unfiltered DC power, i.e. will go crazy. Furthermore, a totally discharged battery will initially not draw much amperes (not load the charger) which may, in the case of some older ordinary type chargers which produce voltage much higher than 12V when not loaded, allow this overvoltage to go to the car electronics and damage them.

    If your battery had gone below 10.8V (and posibly close to zero volts) for a number of days, then it may not be able to take charge any more. You may be able to charge it leaving it on the charger for a long time but it may then lose that charge overnight. You probably need a new battery.
     
    thorn likes this.
  9. joe1973

    joe1973 Karting
    Silver Subscribed

    Nov 12, 2016
    203
    NJ
    Once the the battery goes flat it never goes back. To full at least. Cheap and best peace of mind to replace. Or your risk your alternator and electric gremlins down the road.
     
  10. watkinsgt

    watkinsgt Karting

    Feb 4, 2008
    64
    I've been using a DelTran Battery Tender trickle charger to maintain a '99 355's batteries (on it's third) since car was new. The charger is connected to the engine compartment terminals. During the winter the car sits on the charger for 6 months or more. During the summer it sits on the charger for weeks, sometimes months, at a time. I've never switched off the 'battery disconnecting switch' in the front luggage compartment - believing that would interrupt the trickle charge to the battery. I've never had a battery charging problem - yet. However 355 ownership makes one paranoid, superstitious and downright twitchy - so when I read of runaway 'jackhammering door locks' and 'fried electricals' I gotta ask.....Is my battery maintenance regimen kosher? Is this what others do?
     
  11. hjp

    hjp Formula Junior

    Feb 23, 2013
    561
    Kansas City, Mo.
    Full Name:
    Jerry Peterson

    Basically, yes. A battery tender is not the same thing as a charger. It will not charge a battery at all. In fact, below a certain point, it will not function at all.

    I don't recall off the top of my head what brand tender I have (its a very well known one though) and I have a normal battery. Using a tender like this with a normal battery that is not significantly discharged, whether disconnected from the car or not, is perfectly safe for relatively long periods like you describe.

    You are correct, disconnecting the battery with the switch will disconnect a tender hooked up in the engine bay,
     
  12. Roth

    Roth Formula Junior

    Apr 1, 2016
    287
    Torrance
    Full Name:
    The Pepsi Generation
    Battery brand or type shouldn’t be the cause of the phenomenon as long as it’s a 12v battery. I suspect your car was in the armed stage when the battery died. If you go to disarm it, there may be enough juice to trigger the electronic disarm mode but not enough battery power to unlock the doors to complete the cycle. Throwing a charger on the battery provides just enough to enact the disarm cycle but when the locking mechanism go to unlock the doors, the battery again depleted and the disarm never complete the cycle. The action of locking or unlocking draws more power than the charger can charge the battery so the phenomenon may last many seconds but not for hours or days because the battery would be so depleted or the alarm goes into an arm or disarm mode and require a command from the remote to trigger another action. Remember a charger, trickle charger or the alternator doesn’t power the car electronics. They replenish the battery.


    Note: I did not read all the comments. Opinion above is mine and only mine. It does not represent the opinion of Fchat in any way. While the problem is the same, the cause may be many. Your findings may vary. :)
     
  13. GTUnit

    GTUnit Rookie

    May 25, 2014
    43
    Socal
    Full Name:
    Jack
    I can confirm through personal experience that a DelTran battery tender (small one) will charge a battery from almost any condition. (aside from total failure)
     
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  15. hjp

    hjp Formula Junior

    Feb 23, 2013
    561
    Kansas City, Mo.
    Full Name:
    Jerry Peterson

    As I recall, there was something unusual about this regarding Optima batteries. They required something unusual/special involving recharging and/or trickle charging. Can't remember exactly what but I believe there was some kind of warning involved. Perhaps someone with an Optima that knows about this can explain more fully?
     
  16. Roth

    Roth Formula Junior

    Apr 1, 2016
    287
    Torrance
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    The Pepsi Generation

    I had two yellow top optima batteries in my bmw e31. One in my Rover and. A red top in my e30 M3. I had two yellow top in my boat. They all fail prematurely due to lack of usage.


    Internal materials used to construct batteries determine the quality of the batteries. Minus that, they are all the same in that they are volts and amps. Electronics are electrons wether they are parts of an atom in H2O(water), CU(copper) or within the atoms in your body. If they are force from atom to atom, it is electricity as we know it. However, batteries are classified into different types based on their application. There are two principle types. One is for high current starting and standard vehicle function such as lighting. This type relies on the alternator to supply power once engine running. It can not sustain heavy usage where the battery supplies power beyond a certain percentage. Repeat usage outside this perimeter will end in premature failure. But use as intended, this type lasts longer than the other type. Deep cycle batteries designed to be used in application that demands high current. One scenario is after market high power sound system where peak power demands in excess of 400 or 500 amps is common. Most alternators are not up to the task. That is where a deep cycle battery fills in the missing amps. Also, deep cycle batteries can take a discharge far lower than the other type and charge back up pretty fast.


    Optimal batteries are better made in that they used higher quality materials and they are clearly mark by their top color. The red top is for high starting current and longer life. Ideal for daily driver and exotic cars. The yellow top is ideal for vehicles that demands excessive power. Optima has a blue top also. It’s just a marine version of the yellow top.



    In my opinion both types are equal in their intended application. Electronic devices see only volts and amp. Issue described by OP, I’m pretty certain is not due to batteries brand or type. But then again l’ve seen a unicorn once while hiking in Alaska Yukon during a blizzard in August. :)
     
  17. fatbillybob

    fatbillybob F1 World Champ
    Consultant Owner

    Aug 10, 2002
    14,469
    socal
    Batteries are like luck to me. Sometimes you get lucky. I have a redtop optima dated 2015 died in 2016 out of my 550. I also have a yellow top optima dated 2013 and it is still working perfectly and I use it to power my trailer winch.
    So it gets the worst kind of use. Now I use costco interstate batteries for everything. 48 month full exchange warrantee and costcos are everywhere plus cheap as dirt. I can get 2 costcos for 1 optima. I even have costcos running my diesel truck and that ram takes 2 12v batteries. Thankfully there is not a lot of science in batteries. If it fits the hole and have about stock cranking amps you are good to go unless the oem spec'ed a very marginal battery.
     
  18. f355spider

    f355spider F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    May 29, 2001
    15,654
    Seattle, WA USA
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    Hugh G. Rection
    Consumer Reports test batteries periodically and the Optima yellow tops are recommended. The red top is not...red tops have had a poor reputation for many years now.
     
  19. Roth

    Roth Formula Junior

    Apr 1, 2016
    287
    Torrance
    Full Name:
    The Pepsi Generation

    I completely agree. Optima ranks at the top for after market batteries. I’ve used many in the past but Consumers Report had no bearing on my choosing. Consumers Report for the most part is very informing but to me it’s just a general guide to all things equal. For some of us, certain features or aspects of consumer goods carry more weight than anything else. Assigning an overall score for a sport car is like factoring in the contestants IQ in a bikini contest. I doubt if they subjected the batteries to the condition I did. Regardless, my post was to summarize all batteries fail when used improperly and not to say the red top is better than the yellow top. And while they are good, I wouldn’t make the assumption they are better than OEM batteries. BMW batteries are top notch. Mine lasted more than ten years.


    Oh wow, we agree on everything. Oh wait xcept one small detail. You like black bikinis. I like the sexi ones. :)
     
  20. johnk...

    johnk... F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed Owner

    Jun 11, 2004
    5,438
    I've had pretty good luck with NAPA and Sears Die Hard batteries. I put a NAPA in my truck in 2009. The truck sits a lot. went dead once when I let the truck sit for too long. Charged it. Battery is still fine. NAPA battery in my wife's Honda was so old I can't remember. Still fine when we sold the car last fall. Die Hard in my 308 is 17 years old, now on the way out. It' now showing weakness after sitting, disconnected, for even a couple of weeks. But 17 years? I can't complain. My 355 came to me with an off brand battery in it. I've had it for 4 1/2 years now. Gets disconnected for winter storage, no tender. Don't know when the battery was installed but it's still strong. Measures around 12.4V come spring and starts no problem. Had a NAPA battery in my 96 3 series. Must have been 10 years old when the car was wrecked. Went completely dead once when I left the trunk ajar in the garage for a month. No problem recharging it. Worst experience was with the OEM Porsche battery in my Boxster. New when I bought the car in 2012. Died after 4 years.

    For $117 and 24 month fee replacement NAPA works for me. Less than a annual oil/filter change.
     
  21. f355spider

    f355spider F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    May 29, 2001
    15,654
    Seattle, WA USA
    Full Name:
    Hugh G. Rection
    Unsurprisingly, BMW batteries are (were?) made by Douglas Battery, owned by East Penn, another very highly rated battery manufacturer. East Penn manufactures the Sears GOLD AGM and Duracell AGM batteries, which are all highly rated.
     

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