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SSR Believer
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1,245 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Bought a replacement and need the expert's advice before changing out the little red under hood battery terminal box.

I'd like to avoid losing any computer memory and/or crawling around underneath to disconnect the battery ground cable, but if that's a must I will. I know to roll the windows down beforehand and may need to re-index them afterward, but I don't want to have to go through any other reprogramming if possible.

I've read a couple of posts that suggested keeping a battery tender plugged into one of the power outlets to keep all of the memory intact when changing a battery. I can easily do that if it'll help.

I searched but can't find any advice about simply disconnecting/reconnecting the positive cables in the under hood terminal box. :unsure:

TIA!

IMG_9982.jpeg
 

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One of the SoCal Nuts
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28,280 Posts
The problem comes if you manage to lose control of the Positive cable that comes from the battery in the process of getting it in or out of the box or while removing and reinstalling the box. There is a lot of metal around there that is attached to the negative side of the battery and that positive cable will weld itself to any of that metal and could cause the battery to demolish itself to say nothing of the damage that could be done by a lot of sparks under the hood.
I have seen a lot of trouble caused by a shorted battery in a situation that was much less complex. Just one little distraction is all it takes.
 

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Premium Member
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2,677 Posts
Personally i would connect my battery tender to a powerport that is not been mofified to be key power. Rear power port or underdash if you haven't rewired them to be key power.
Then with everything shut down, tailgate open, cargo cover closed, all doors closed and ready to work.
I would crawl under and disconnect the negative battery cable.
I would then feel comfortable th o replace battery box. The cables will still be live BUT they will only be able yo conduct the current from battery tender and not enough to cause issues. The small current from battery tender will keep memories alive provided you don't ground one of the wires or tools while removing. My small battery tender is rated at 1.25 amps and the normal draw to keep computer memories alive is less than 0.05 smps. So it is more than enough to get job done and not too much to cause issues.
This is just my safe reccomendation. You may hear others

If you just disconnect cables without battery tender you will still lose some memories and may not pass an emissions test
 

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Premium Member
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The problem comes if you manage to lose control of the Positive cable that comes from the battery in the process of getting it in or out of the box or while removing and reinstalling the box. There is a lot of metal around there that is attached to the negative side of the battery and that positive cable will weld itself to any of that metal and could cause the battery to demolish itself to say nothing of the damage that could be done by a lot of sparks under the hood.
I have seen a lot of trouble caused by a shorted battery in a situation that was much less complex. Just one little distraction is all it takes.
Great advice Del.
Added to it, you will lose power to some computers with the cables unconnected, so definitely not worth the risk.
 

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SSR Believer
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1,245 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thank you gentleman... exactly the info I was looking for. (y)

The problem comes if you manage to lose control of the Positive cable that comes from the battery in the process of getting it in or out of the box or while removing and reinstalling the box. There is a lot of metal around there that is attached to the negative side of the battery and that positive cable will weld itself to any of that metal and could cause the battery to demolish itself to say nothing of the damage that could be done by a lot of sparks under the hood.
I have seen a lot of trouble caused by a shorted battery in a situation that was much less complex. Just one little distraction is all it takes.
Although I'm as careful as can be, you're right Dwight, all it takes is a little distraction for things to go south. Not worth it for this little project, that's for sure.

Personally i would connect my battery tender to a power port that is not been modified to be key power. Rear power port or underdash if you haven't rewired them to be key power.
Then with everything shut down, tailgate open, cargo cover closed, all doors closed and ready to work.
I would crawl under and disconnect the negative battery cable.
I would then feel comfortable th o replace battery box. The cables will still be live BUT they will only be able to conduct the current from battery tender and not enough to cause issues. The small current from battery tender will keep memories alive provided you don't ground one of the wires or tools while removing. My small battery tender is rated at 1.25 amps and the normal draw to keep computer memories alive is less than 0.05 amps. So it is more than enough to get job done and not too much to cause issues.
This is just my safe recommendation. You may hear others

If you just disconnect cables without battery tender you will still lose some memories and may not pass an emissions test
Great advice Mark (as usual). I currently have our Deltran 3 amp battery tender connected to the power outlet in the bed. I'll plan on leaving the tender connected and disconnecting the negative battery cable (from the battery itself) before doing anything.

Thanks again!! 🙏
 

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SSR Believer
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1,245 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Quick follow-up... got 'er done!

As you both recommended, disconnected the negative battery cable but kept the battery tender plugged in. The positive terminal under the hood still showed 12.5v and I was careful not to touch them to any metal of course. It's a bit of a pain to swap out the box with the stiff cables and tight space, but it all went well.

I had purchased a new negative battery cable a while back with the intention of replacing it when I replace the battery (warranty expires next February). However upon inspection the one there looked almost brand new. The ground points were clean as a whistle too. Put a little liquid electrical tape on them just in case. So I put the new cable back in the box for another day.

No warning lights or DIC messages when I fired it up so we're all good. (y)

Thanks again for the great advice! 🙏

IMG_9986.jpeg IMG_9996.jpeg
 

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Premium Member
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2,677 Posts
Great job, thanks for reporting in --- did you have to reset seat memory, radio time, channels, driver personal settings or relearn windows?
The reason for wanting to leave things connected.
 

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SSR Believer
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Discussion Starter #8
Great job, thanks for reporting in --- did you have to reset seat memory, radio time, channels, driver personal settings or relearn windows?
The reason for wanting to leave things connected.
Thanks for the kind words. Apologies, should have mentioned that I put the top up and the windows indexed fine. Opened and closed both doors, still indexed fine. I installed a Pioneer DVD/CD head unit/stereo a while back and the clock and everything's good on it. The OEM radio is in a box on the shelf so no idea if it would have been affected, but probably not?

Short answer is yes, the seat memory was still there. Funny, I've never set the driver memory for either of us. Sandy's only driven it once so I set the seat position long ago. I just tested it and yes, there was a memorized position! And yikes! :oops: The gentleman that I bought it from was on the short side so it's a good thing that there's plenty of head room as it boosted me up to the top and squished my 6ft. frame forward quite a bit!

Based on that I'd say leaving the battery tender connected saved all of the R's memory. I'll report back if I experience anything unusual though.
 

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Premium Member
'06 FPR Smokin Asphalt; '04 Ulta Violet
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4,053 Posts
I guess having the Battery tender connected is why you showed 12 volts at the box although the amps is low.

Nick
 

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SSR Believer
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Discussion Starter #10
I guess having the Battery tender connected is why you showed 12 volts at the box although the amps is low.

Nick
Based on @Autoprof's analysis I believe that would be the case. I should have checked amperage but was just checking to see if the cable was still "live" at the time. ⚡
 

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Premium Member
2004 Slingshot Yellow
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1,868 Posts
I have a 9V battery clip wired to a male 12v plug. When I changed my SSR battery twice, I clipped a fresh 9V battery in and plugged it into the underdash port. Everything was retained. I have used this successfully on a Lexus LS, Infinty Q45.
If you make one make sure to wire positive to the center pole on the plug.
 

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Daily Driver
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8,919 Posts
I keep reading threads on how to power the electronics while doing something or other and I don't get it.
I've had the battery out several times and when doing the spare tire rack it was disconnected for many hours. In all those instances I've never lost a preset... ever, not even window indexing.
 

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Premium Member
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2,677 Posts
Many things are written into computers and are retained but there are other things that are not. Also Realize not all computer memories are things seen.

Ask anyone that has had trouble getting car to pass emissions after battery disconnect or replacement. The readiness flags are cleared and so are adaptive driving strategies.
 

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Premium Member
2004 Slingshot Yellow
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1,868 Posts
I keep reading threads on how to power the electronics while doing something or other and I don't get it.
I've had the battery out several times and when doing the spare tire rack it was disconnected for many hours. In all those instances I've never lost a preset... ever, not even window indexing.
Not all are the same. On our Infinity disconnecting the battery wiped the radio, mirror, steering wheel and seat presets. So since then I have used the 9V backup to save some aggravation. And as @Autoprof points out, If you disconnect or change the battery prior to a State Emissions Inspection it will fail. The computer needs about 7 - 8 full temperature driving Cycles after a battery change before it can be inspected. This is to prevent someone from clearing a check light or code to try to pass inspection.
 
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