The i30 Owners Club

Parasitic battery drain?

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Offline chrisdarl

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Car has gone flat twice in the last month, both after a week of not driving the car and wondered if I could have a battery drain. I have removed the negative terminal from the battery and checked the amps between the battery and the negative lead and this reads between 160-260ma. I was expecting lower, like 50ma, is the reading I'm getting expected with more modern cars? No doors open, key out of ignition and nothing running.

Car is a 2013 GD i30

I jumped the car yesterday and drove for 4 hours, battery is fully charged at 12.8v now so alternator is fine.

Thanks so much for any tips! AGM battery's aren't cheap!
  • 2013 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manual, Silver - start stop, Blue drive


Offline The Gonz

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You haven't mentioned the age of the battery  :confused:
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Offline chrisdarl

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I've had the car 3-4 years and haven't changed it since, done 60k miles in that time.

Would that indicate its a new battery needed?
  • 2013 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manual, Silver - start stop, Blue drive


Offline The Gonz

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Some batteries may only last around  4 years, maybe less.
Have you had the battery tested? Battery shops can diagnose whether your battery is still fully serviceable.

As for parasitic current, the car has clock, memory and security functions kept alive while idle, so the drain may be normal.
I'll let someone with a GD comment.
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Offline CraigB

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12.8v is on the low end, mine sits on 13.2v and if it drops below 13v (car sitting for 2 or 3 weeks) I'll put it on a maintenance charge.

Bosch calcium batteries I find will outlast most others, S4 calcium -  S5 silver calcium or the S6 AGM for start stop vehicles.


Offline bag4life

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I've had the car 3-4 years and haven't changed it since, done 60k miles in that time.

Would that indicate its a new battery needed?

I would say so - unsure if your model is start/stop, but these batteries rarely last beyond 3 years, and most 'normal' batteries don't survive more than 5 years in the UK.

12.8v fully charged isn't great either. I'd either take to a local motor factors with a battery tester, or just buy a new battery. Probably the latter given what you've described
  • 2010 i30 1.6 CRDi Auto (FD)


Offline chrisdarl

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Wonderful, thanks all for your advice!

It's a start-stop I have (not that it start-stops that much!)

Now battery choice, which would you all recommend;
  • Lucas - £115
  • Elixr - £95
  • YUASA - £120
  • varta - £110

Thanks so much
  • 2013 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manual, Silver - start stop, Blue drive


Offline sundiz

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Did you test the battery drain bonnet open? To really get the drain measured all the doors should be closed and the switch of the sensor which checks if bonnet is open should be clamped down so the computer thinks bonnet is closed. Then lock the car and wait a minute or two. After that you should be able to see the real drain.

If you did like mentioned above it seems like there is some draining the battery. The current values you mentioned seem to be a bit high. Can't remember the values i30 should have, but some other cars have had something like 30mA drain when locked and everything is in order. Basicly something like you expected, tens of milliamps.
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Offline bag4life

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Wonderful, thanks all for your advice!

It's a start-stop I have (not that it start-stops that much!)

Now battery choice, which would you all recommend;
  • Lucas - £115
  • Elixr - £95
  • YUASA - £120
  • varta - £110

Thanks so much

Whichever has the longest warranty, however I personally always buy Yuasa batteries. Bought at least 100+ over the years (not just for me!) and not had a single problem with any of them, even after years of abuse.
  • 2010 i30 1.6 CRDi Auto (FD)


Offline The Gonz

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Of that list, I've only ever heard good things about Yuasa.
The rest I have never heard credited with any particularly good quality.
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Offline chrisdarl

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Thanks all!

@sundiz I did exactly as you suggested, clamped down the bonnet sensor and kept the multimeter connected for two minutes and the amperage reading dropped to 0.02A so at least I'm content in knowing there isn't a drain. I went with a Elixr battery in the end, 3 year warranty so will see how it goes, may not have the car much longer than that.

Thanks again :-)
  • 2013 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manual, Silver - start stop, Blue drive


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