Black box to negative battery terminal | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)

Black box to negative battery terminal

Discussion in 'Electrical' started by Sonja Stevens, Jul 1, 2018.

  1. Sonja Stevens

    Sonja Stevens FEOA Member

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    So my black box wires to my negative battery terminal are melted. My car won't turn over but it's trying to start. It overheated one day and im trying to figure that out, but my car won't start.
    I read in here that you can splice the wires, make a new connection to an o ring and fix it. But what gauge wire should I use?
    Any other things I should know?
  2. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    How badly did it overheat, and how did you notice that it had done so?
  3. Sonja Stevens

    Sonja Stevens FEOA Member

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    I was driving down the highway and it started to smoke. The radiator cap was not on all the way and blew off. I luckily found it in the bottom of the car, but after filling with water, it all immediately leaked out, and the heat gauge jumped right up. I tried to turn the heat on, but only cold air would blow out.
    I'm guessing it's the water pump? But now after it's been sitting, it won't even start.
    I put more water in the radiator and overflow tank, there's no water leaking out that I can see, it only leaks when it's running.
    My car is all sorts of messed up, I hope it's not something more serious.
  4. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    If its been sitting for a while, it may need a new battery, or at least the old one charged up with a battery charger.
    If it only leaks when its running, it may be that the leak is somewhere not obvious. It may require being able to start the car, and look for where water is leaking out. A good way to do this is to park it over cardboard. Also see if there is more vapor coming out the tailpipe that there was before.
    After overheating, the head may have gotten warped, and which may result in a headgasket going bad. This usually takes a while to show up - like dozens or hundreds of miles. Then coolant could be getting sucked into the cylinders, and blown out the tailpipe in the form of more visible vapor than usual.
  5. 88ESCORTV6

    88ESCORTV6 The Alpha Of The Omega

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    Try turning your engine with a big ratchet and a long extension see if engine turns freely.

    I think and it may be possible that it overheated and is now sized.
  6. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    The above comment is a great idea. And if you turn it with a wrench (using the 19mm bolt head in the crankshaft), you should be able to feel the compression strokes, two of them to each turn of the crankshaft. Seen from the passenger side, you should turn the engine counterclockwise.
  7. Sonja Stevens

    Sonja Stevens FEOA Member

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    I got the battery and ground wires re-done. I also put in new spark plysp and wires and that actually made my car start now. I think the overheating ruined my plugs they looked terrible.
    So I started the car, cold air blowing out when the heat was on, then it started smoking out of the passenger side wheel well. The temp gauge didn't work either. I couldn't see where it was coming from but it was passenger side lower down.
    Then I took the keys out and it started to make a loud freaky humming/buzzing noise I've never heard a car make that sound. It went on for about 60 seconds, stopped, then started again. Something is drawing power I'm guessing but I'm not sure.
    Breakdown:
    New wires to battery and grounds, new spark plugs and wires, battery is good, no leaking water but smoke coming out, temp gauge not working, heat not working and now a humming sound while car is off.... A MESS!!!
    I'm putting in a new thermostat today to see what that does.
  8. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    Have you replaced the electrical part of your ignition switch yet?
  9. Sonja Stevens

    Sonja Stevens FEOA Member

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    No but it is starting and running fine again...what would that do?
  10. 88ESCORTV6

    88ESCORTV6 The Alpha Of The Omega

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    Engine cylinder head bad.
    Test your coolant for combustion residue you can buy a kit at Napa for 25$ read instruction. And do the test.
    I think you gave air pocket caused by bad head gasket or cracket cylinder head.
  11. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    Replacing the ignition switch now would prevent it from failing in the next year or two. However, they generally fail by having intermittent annoyances; not by just dropping dead one day.
    zzyzzx likes this.
  12. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    Pics please!

    This is what mine looks like after I replaced the end piece:
    [​IMG]
  13. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    I am fond of replacing the OEM battery terminals with ones as shown in the photo above. I get the ones that are solid brass, then I solder the battery cable to the battery terminal. It takes some time and patience, but then seems to last forever.
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  14. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    I have also used 3/8" copper tube as battery cable ends. Cut a piece about 1-1/2" long, deburr the inside edge, and hammer one end flat. Now drill a 5/16" hole through the flat part, carefully insert the battery terminal wire into the open end and solder, using rosin (non-corrosive) solder.
    Now this can be attached to the battery clamp.

    The battery cables usually sold at parts stores have only a copper plated, steel end crimped on. A terrible electrical connection.
    zzyzzx likes this.
  15. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    Finding the all-brass terminals can be a hit or miss event; and without doing the soldering, wont survive for long. The ones made of lead that just clamp onto the copper wire are okay to get you home from vacation; but the connection will deteriorate before long. I have helped folks out by just tightening the two clamping bolts - and told them they needed to either replace the cable and terminal, or resnug the bolts a few times a year.
    I always always carry jumper cables in the car; a set about 25' long, and double OO in size. I have gotten gotten grateful thanks from numerous folks who needed a "jump".
  16. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    The one in my picture is the bolt on type and I have never had to resnug it. It's been in use for several years now. I can check my maintenance log and report back how long.
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2018
  17. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    Especially since "brass" usually means brass coated, and the product packaging will conveniently omit that fact.
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  18. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    Pics please!!!
  19. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    Pictures... it's on a vehicle stored at my friend's somewhat distant rural property, so it might take a while.
  20. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    I can wait.

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