» View Question

Beth 1/25/2020

2005 Honda Element EX 4 Cyl 2.40L


battery drain when car is sitting off

I just replaced the serpentine belt, alternator, and battery. replaced everything on a Tuesday, ran fine on Wednesday all day, Thursday ran fine in morning then after work in evening the battery was completely dead. got a jump start and it ran fine to get me home, battery light came on briefly along with airbag light but went off shortly after. have checked battery with meter and it reads at 14 when its running, alternator is fine and belt is not too loose or too tight, fuses test as good, connectors are good as well. I turn everything off including the radio and the heater, unplug the phone chargers and all that when i turn the car off. And when I turn it back on after its been off for hours the battery is completely dead. The old battery charged and tested fine when out of the car so we switched the batteries back out. but the battery light and airbag light are still coming on. What else should we be looking for? Going back out in a few hours to see if it turns on again.

1 Answer


Jimm 1/25/2020

Several possibilities; faulty / worn belt tensioner, faulty / corroded battery cables, faulty corroded battery terminals, short in the electrical system or wiring.

First step - check if any lights, residual circuits are 'on' with the key off and out of the ignition.

Check the parasitic draw with a volt-ohm meter across the battery terminals and pull (remove) the fuses one by one, from the fuse panel to isolate to a specific circuit.

BTW - when the drive belt is replaced, always replace the belt tensioner at the same time - due to mileage and wear considerations.

Try these various on-line parts vendors; www.autopartsanything.com, www.rockauto.com, www.partsgeek.com - to list only a few.

In fact, they (RockAuto) list the drive belt tensioner from around $25.00 for your vehicle.

Belt tensioner = GATES part #38278 - or it's equivalent


Answer this question

( characters left)

Follow Question

what's this?