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Daily Dead Battery - 2003 Expedition

05-12-2005, 11:07 PM
Please Help Me!!

My wife's 2003 Ford Expedition has a dead battery - every morning!!

I've taken it to Batteries Plus - where they performed a load test and declared the battery fine and they also measured the alternator as charging at 13.4 amps (which was OK to them). I then took it to a good local mechanic - who correctly diagnosed that the cause of my Door Ajar problem could be fixed with a lubricant spray - but that wasn't enough to be the cause of my problem. He also measured the battery as discharging at .2 amps when not running - which he didn't think was a problem and could be attributable to the security system that is factory built-in. He's thinking it may be a problem with a computer chip but he doesn't want to just replace expensive parts without knowing for sure - which I appreciate. His SnapOn analyzer couldn't pinpoint the problem either when it was hooked up to the car.

The problem is still there. If the Expedition sits for more than 6 hours, it's pretty much a given that it will need to be jump started. Once running, it runs fine.

Has anybody had a similar problem? If so, what was the cause and approximate cost to fix? If not, do you have a theory?


Oronoco, MN

05-13-2005, 05:08 PM
while this is not a "solution" it'll work for the short term, install a battery cutoff switch, one that disconnects the battery from any electrical drain.
at least untill the problem can be found
Rick, Ore

05-18-2005, 10:36 AM
Thanks for the feedback - I've thought of that but I'm not sure if it is worth the effort since I'm going to eventually have to get it fixed anyway.

Has anybody had any problems with 2003 Expedition's electrical systems - computer chips?

Any help is appreciated?


05-19-2005, 06:16 PM
You can disconnect one of the battery cables and put a test light(prefer a ammeter) between the post and the cable. If the light lights up, pull one fuse at a time until the light goes out. I prefer ammeter, cause the GEM keeps modules powered up for a few minutes upto an hour. When light goes out with fuse, find out what is on that circuit. Also check to be sure no inside lights are on.

05-23-2005, 12:56 PM
Since the one mechanic found a draw of 0.2 Amps, and that is OK, but at the upper end of OK, you do NOT have a draw problem. More likely your battery is just bad.

Given that your Expy is only two years old, a bad battery is not the most likely problem, but given the test results that you have, I would bet that it is bad.

Also, your alternator should charge far more than 13.4 amps, and/or 13.4volts. The MINIMUM charging Voltage is 13.6V, and the Amperage varies with load, but with everything on it should be 95Amps or more at an engine speed of 1200 rpm or so. The voltage during this test may be slightly lower than 13.6V IF it is 13.85 V or more at idle with all accessories off.

07-02-2009, 01:18 PM
I had the same problem with my 97 expedition and oddly enough after a couple of trips to the dealer they found it was the starter that was causing the drain,replaced it,no more problems.

09-22-2009, 07:11 PM
I had the same problem with my 2003 Expedition. I remembered when it happened that my rear wiper motor had stopped working just before that. I unhooked the wiring harness in the door and fixed the problem. I went back in later and discovered that the "arm" that connects the motor to the wiper blade that swivels was frozen. This was causing the motor to continuously be on trying to push the wiper blade. Luckily I caught it before it burned the motor up and was able to identify the part at the dealer and replace. Never had the battery problem again when I got it working.

Teddy da Bear
06-24-2010, 04:10 PM
I have the same problem with my 2003 expedition! The problem had
resolved itself for a while. Now after 8 or 9 month......the battery is
going dead again. When charging the battery.... I noticed an almost
inaudible "click click" in or around the rear window. I know too that
my rear wiper motor does not function correctly.
I will bet my problem is the same as the last person to post.
A faulty wiper motor or some sensor.

Also I am having climate control trouble. The climate controls on the
dash are very tempermental. Occassionally you can change them. But
for the most part you cannot. Steering wheel controls work just fine.
But I cannot always make changes between "air conditioning" and
"auto" or "off" etc. Then once in a great while they all work for no
rhyme or reason. Any ideas? Bad relay? Bad ground?

06-25-2010, 09:47 PM
Welcome to the forum.

I had the problem with the rear wiper on my 95 wagon. The electric motor wire was grounding out and blowing the fuse. The fuse for it also controlled the clutch on the A/C compressor so if I wanted air I would have to have it fixed. I took it to the dealer who told me he could put in all new harness wiring for about $1500 or he could clip the wire going to the rear wiper motor. I opted out for that.

The climate control operates off of engine vacuum. When it is having problems it goes to defrost by default since that would be a safety factor if it wasn't working. Check the vacuum hoses to see if any of them had come loose or were leaking. Also, check the PVC valve and hoses. I think you have a vacuum leak.

Teddy da Bear
06-26-2010, 07:25 AM fuse is not blowing. The wiper motor continues to "click'.

But I will check my hoses for leaks.

06-28-2010, 09:07 PM
Hi! I am Ferdie Clark. An Engineer by profession. And an enthusiast also in different types of vehicles. I work in an ac condenser store company. Well regarding your problem with your expedition, the solution is try to ask a auto electrician and check all electrical wirings. For there is a possibility of a grounded wirings. Second, the ignition coil system. Have it check...

06-28-2010, 09:15 PM
Did you try checking the battery voltage with key off engine off to see what the value is and then pull the fuses one by one watching your DMM values if the value increases example started out 11.7 then increases to 12.9 the last circuit is your problem creating an excessive draw on the battery. A Digital Multimeter will help you alot here.

07-20-2010, 09:11 AM
.2 amps is too much draw, it should be .030 or less.........something is drawing juice.

09-03-2010, 03:35 PM
More than likely it is the rear wiper pivot froze up and the wiper motor is trying to go to the park position causing you're battery to have a draw. Disconnect fuse #38 and see if the draw goes away. I don't know why the rear wiper has power to it with the key off, but it does. I have left my fuse out and it seems to have fixed the problem.

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