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Old 09-29-2015, 10:49 AM   #1
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Let's play Taurus Trivial Pursuit

I have a 2012 Taurus Limited that I'm wanting to put into service as a toad. According to everything I've read including the owner's manual, it's towable four down.

For giggles, two evenings ago I went through the process outlined by the manual to make it towable: put ignition in acc position, place shift lever in neutral. Simple enough, although it unnerves me a bit to think of leaving the ignition in acc position for an extended period. Upon completion of this drill (5 min at most), I placed it back in Park, removed the key, and returned inside the house. At no point did I actually start the engine.

Yesterday morning I get in the car to go somewhere, and the battery was dead. I jumped it, ran my errands, and returned home. For the rest of the day I monitored the battery charge and it was steady at 12.6V+.

So I'm thinking about this and it doesn't make sense. The battery is only a year old, and I don't understand why doing what I did would result in a dead battery.

This morning, again for giggles and as an experiment, I went thru the drill again (ign in acc, neutral, park, remove key). The battery was registering 12.6V at the start of this. I set my timer for an hour and was going to check the voltage after that time period. I expected to see 12.6v or a slight degradation from that. My timer went off and the car would not start due to insufficient voltage. After my unsuccessful cranking attempt, the voltage showed less than 12v.

My conclusion from all this is that the car has to be started before putting it to bed after going thru the tow preparation sequence in order to preserve the battery's charge. But I don't understand why. My second conclusion is I will definitely need a charge line on this vehicle.

Is this an anomaly or standard procedure on a Taurus? If normal, what does starting the engine do that prevents the battery from discharging so quickly?

Thanks,
Ed
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Old 09-29-2015, 05:00 PM   #2
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I tow a 2012 Flex AWD Eco boost. On the Flex I turn the key past the acc position as far as possible. It does not turn much past the acc position. I learned this from others on the internet to avoid dead batteries. I have done this for over 5000 miles with no battery issues. Never tried doing what you did before dead battery and no start.
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Old 09-30-2015, 09:02 AM   #3
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You did turn everything off (fan, radio, navigation, etc. ) before you tried your experiment, right?

The other way to deal with this is to add a charge line from your motorhome to the vehicle battery. You won't have anymore problems with dead batteries.
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Old 10-01-2015, 03:51 PM   #4
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Ed-

Last week I got interested in helping another iRV2 member figure out how to install a charge line in his Kountry Star using the wiring already installed in the coach. Call it curiosity, as I don't own one. I figure if the manufacturer built it, they meant it to be used.

I studied the Spartan diagrams, but ran into a dead end (see this post). I'd like to offer my help to you. You have the coach, I have started the detective work. Feel free to send me a private message if you're interested. If not, that's OK. Thanks.

Mark
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Old 10-01-2015, 08:20 PM   #5
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Ed,
I don't own a Taurus so, I'm not sure I can accurately try and help here. But, if I may suggest something. One, try and find out just what auxiliary circuits are activated if and when, the key is in the ACC position. Second, if you have one, or, if you can borrow one, or, get a friend who has one, A CLAMP AMP METER. Once you have access to one, place it on the either the negative or positive cable of the battery while your key is in the ACC position. That way, you may see just how many amps, whatever systems(circuits) that might be on, are drawing.

There are some AMP test positions on most Volt Ohm meters but, they are limited to maximum of 10A so, if you draw more than that, well, you might make toast out of your VOM.

And, one more thing. While you say your battery is just over a year old, that might not mean much. Batteries are not infallible. They can go bad not too long after purchase. It is possible but, not all too probable, that you have just a surface charge on that battery. It's enough to sustain cranking and starting on a well tuned, Fuel injected engine that normally starts within just a few seconds of initial cranking.

But, just beyond that initial cranking, IT DIES ALMOST INSTANTLY! You may not see this because your vehicle normally starts right up and, you never hit that point at which the battery has NO reserve left. This is just some info here and, most likely is not your problem but, everything's worth checking.

All you'd have to do to check it is, take either the car or the battery to a local auto parts store and, have a load test put on it. That will tell you almost instantly if your battery is junk or not. You've got nothing to loose in this test except time. That's about all I have to offer.

By the way, if you find out that your battery is in great shape and, there's no issues with it but, your car is pulling it down when the key is in the ACC position, then adding a charge line might be your only way out of this dilemma. But, be careful here too. The reason is, if your car is pulling down a perfectly good battery in that short amount of time, it might mean a fairly stout load. And if you put a charge line in place, that kind of a load might put quite a load on the coaches alternator which, in certain circumstances will make it work pretty hard, including all the wiring for that charge line. Just some info here.
Scott
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Old 10-03-2015, 11:39 AM   #6
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Well Scott, you just may be on to something. I purchased a load tester this morning and it's testing bad. I've never had that happen to such a new battery before. Sheesh.
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Old 10-03-2015, 11:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by USMCRET View Post
Well Scott, you just may be on to something. I purchased a load tester this morning and it's testing bad. I've never had that happen to such a new battery before. Sheesh.
Hopefully that's your problem. Simply because it's easy to correct. Heck, there's bad batteries out there that are sitting on the shelf, brand new. Not very many mind you but, it happens every once in a while. Let us know how things turn out when you're done.
Scott
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