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Strange Optima Problem

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by greybeard, Nov 14, 2001.

  1. greybeard

    greybeard Registered Member

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    OK, I had a strange problem with my optima battery a couple of days ago. When I tried to start it, I got the usual solenoid clicking associated with a dead battery. It wouldn't take a jump. It was late and dark, and I ended up getting a cheap battery from Pepboys. With the new battery in place, it started right up.

    Last night I put a volt meter on the optima. It read 12.5 volts. That wasn't what I was expecting! I was thinking it wasn't holding a charge any more. Anyway, I hooked it up to my J**p (which happened to be in the garage at the time) and it easily started right up. So, now I'm thinking there must have been a loose connection in the blazer. So I put the optima back in the K5, check all the connections. cables, etc. and I still got the same solenoid clicking. Then I put the new, cheap battery back in and it started right up.

    There are a couple of things to note. First, the optima is 3 years old. I know the J**p is only a 6 cylinder and the K5 is an 8. The starter in the K5 is a couple of months old. The last point is that the new, cheap battery spins the K5 starter a lot faster then the optima did.

    So, what do you think is going on here? I guess I should have to optima tested and see what they say but i was suprised that it would start the J**p so easily and it wouldn't start the K5 at all. I also expected to optima to last longer. Any thoughts? I have 2 other optimas in other vehicles and I might do some more swapping around tonight.
     
  2. mudhog

    mudhog THEGAME Staff Member Super Moderator

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  3. Dieselmh

    Dieselmh 1/2 ton status

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    Your optima probably just doesn't have the current to turn the K5 over. You may still have voltage, but not enough amps to engage the solenoid and/or starter. Try taking your optima to an auto parts store or mechanic's shop and putting a load tester on it. You may find that when you drop a load on it, the voltage and current drop really low. I've had it happen before where the voltage looks good, but a load tester showed that the current was really low. Good luck.

    Diesel

    Shouldn't it be called uncommon sense?
     
  4. Executioner

    Executioner 1/2 ton status

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    Go to the Optima web site, look for the charging section, and charge the bad boy up.
    Full charge open circuit voltage shoiud be near 12.8 volts.
    Heat is a killer, so depending on how you charge it make sure the battey temp. does not go over 125 degs.
    Good luck
     
  5. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    I could be wrong, but I heard that deep cycles don't take a jump start.
    A.) I don't know if your battery is deep cycle or not
    B.) I don't know if it is true

    but if your optima is deep cycle it may not take a charge and as said before the volts might be high but low on amps.

    See my rig at <a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/Leadfoot> click here </a>
     
  6. Heavymetal

    Heavymetal 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    You can actually load test it yourself. Turn on your headlights and anything else that takes a lot of juice, with your engine not running. That gives you a load. Then check your voltage. Its been a while, but I believe that if it drops below say 10.5 to 11 volts in under 5 minutes its bad. This is of course after you have charged it.

    Mike.

    77'/87' 3/4 ton Burb, 400cu, sm465, np205, 14boltff, dana44, 4.10s, 35in BFG's.
     
  7. xplosuv

    xplosuv 1/2 ton status

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    I sell Optima Batterys at my shop. Is it a red top or yellow top.
    They should read around 13.8 to 14.4 volts when testing them. The deep cycle yellow tops are recommened to be charged rather than jumped, dont see the point to that but have heard this? if you have a volt meter check it as you turn your engine over and see if it drops below 8 volts.

    If you cant go over it...GO THROUGH IT !!! <a target="_blank" href=http://www.CaliforniaK5Krawlers.com>www.CaliforniaK5Krawlers.com</a>
    75 Jimmy 11" lift with 40's
     
  8. greybeard

    greybeard Registered Member

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    It's a red top. I have not tried charging it up. I ended up working late last night and I didn't get a chance to look at it any further. It did occur to me that it didn't have the amps to drive the starter on the K5 but I figured if it couldn't start the K5, it wouldn't start the Jeep either. I guess there must be a significant difference in the load requirements between the two.
     
  9. Executioner

    Executioner 1/2 ton status

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    13.8 to 14.4 volts when testing them
    Please explain
    Something sounds fishy to me !
     
  10. xplosuv

    xplosuv 1/2 ton status

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    The batterys read 13+ volts most of the time, we allways trickle charge them till the volt meters starts to drop. Most batterys that you buy off the shop only have a 80% charge in them. The yellow top Optima is like the standard battery everybody uses in the car audio secene, and we go through a lot of them and dont have a problem with them. I would take it back to where you bought it and see about replacing it.

    If you cant go over it...GO THROUGH IT !!! <a target="_blank" href=http://www.CaliforniaK5Krawlers.com>www.CaliforniaK5Krawlers.com</a>
    75 Jimmy 11" lift with 40's
     

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