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Scion xA/xB 1st-Gen ICE & Interior In-car entertainment and electronics...

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Old 03-23-2010, 11:24 PM   #1
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Default My Lights Dim More after Ground Kit And Big 3 Upgrade?

I have 1000.1 kicker hooked up to a 12w7 in a ported box tuned to 32hz

I at first had it hooked up with 4 AWG and had a tiny bit of dimming in the lights, then i Replaced it with 0 AWG and did the Big 3 with 0 AWG and a grounding kit with 0 AWG and now the lights dim a lot more.


Is that due to also replacing the amps wiring with 0 AWG and it is getting more power?

Thanks!
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Old 03-24-2010, 12:36 AM   #2
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probably. also big 3 is kinda pointless if you don't have an upgraded battery or alternator.
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Old 03-24-2010, 08:15 PM   #3
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It actually still helps a lot in theory with the stock alternator and battery due to it creating less resistance and putting less strain on the two.

But why now did it make mine worse?
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Old 03-26-2010, 05:46 PM   #4
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Did you upgrade the charge wire to the battery? you can add a second wire from alt to battery if you can fit it go to 0ga, also upgrad the factory battery ground to 0ga. And did you also increse amp ground to 0ga?
Try these also,and should get rid of the problem. new battery also
red top Optima or kinetik or Odassyor Stinger battery! Optima will be least
expensive and try costco for the optima have heard they sell them at wht dealer cost is. Peace good luck
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Old 03-26-2010, 10:11 PM   #5
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If the upgrade done was addition to rather than replacing the existing run of wires, there's no reason why it should be worse. Double check your connections to make sure they are going where they need to be. The Big-3 was a huge improvement on my car. No more electrostatic shock coming out of the car... that and the light have not dimmed once.

mmm, Kinetik/Stinger batteries are uber!
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Old 03-28-2010, 12:50 AM   #6
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Ya All these I did in 0 AWG

- Alternator to battery positive
- Battery to engine block for ground
- Battery to Strut Tower for ground
- Amp power and Ground
- And a grounding kit in 0 AWG cause i had some left over haha

Also the stock alternator to battery positive i left on, but took off the original grounds.


Thanks for the help and tomorrow i"m re checking EVERYTHING haha and i'll let ya know
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Old 03-29-2010, 02:23 AM   #7
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Well i re-checked everything and its all tight and i wire brushed every connection.

The lights dim less than before but still do dim significantly on some songs. Weird thing is the low songs like Late night tip dim A LOT less than songs like A Mili. ha ha

I play all my songs from my USB at like 256kb And some of them dim, but radio songs don't.

So i guess i may need to upgrade the battery since its only stock.

Re cap of the connection points (Let me know if i'm wrong)

Ground Kit
- Left strut to alternator mount
- engine block to ignition coil 1
- ignition coil 4 to right strut tower (frame)


Big 3
- Alternator Pos to Battery Pos
- Engine block (where orig ground was) to neg
- neg to right strut tower (frame)

I kept the stock positive wiring on but had to remove stock ground b/c i couldnt fit it on the new terminal

Am i missing anything? or could i just need a better battery?
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Old 03-29-2010, 03:48 AM   #8
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The way I'm looking at this... if it's worse than stock, there's a connection issue somewhere. If you had to replace the points for the ground, I would highly recommend doing some sort of collective mount such as solder on the cable to the mount point.

Can you give me the points you had to remove the stock wiring in favor of the big 3 change?
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Old 03-29-2010, 04:18 AM   #9
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the stock ground was from the engine block beneath the battery and a metal part of the grille above the headlight

I put 0 AWG in the same exact spot for the engine block ground,and the second ground instead of the metal part of the grille, i moved it to the strut tower, (less resistance).
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Old 03-29-2010, 04:20 AM   #10
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p82xRzCr-lc I did EXACTLY this plus a grounding kit.
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Old 03-29-2010, 12:39 PM   #11
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What the guy did in the video is perfect Big-3. The only thing I would have kept though, the original ground wires from the factory. I know it sounds odd, but by keeping those wires, you ensure the charging system will only be better instead of potentially getting worse.

Two locations where the factory wire was replaced
1. Engine ground to Battery ground
2. Chassis ground to Battery ground

This is what I would do. Clean the negative terminal on the battery post with a wire brush. Clean the engine ground. If you have a dremel with a wire brush wheel, also clean the bolt. There's something called dielectric grease that is used for connections on lights and plugs that are open to the elements. That grease can be picked up at any car parts store. After the bolt to the engine block has been cleaned, lube it up with the grease and reconnect the ground.

Before reconnecting the chassis ground, test the charging system to see if there is any improvement (which there should be). After the test, move on to making sure the chassis ground is solid in the same way using the grease and cleaning with the wire brush. If you haven't removed the paint from the shock tower, you will want to do so (dremel is your friend). Test the system again.

If the charging system still has yet to be better than factory, I would remove the grounding kit completely and go from there. Add in one extra ground cable at a time until you find one that is causing problems.

Keep in mind, voltmeters are your friend. Test every point going back to the battery. If I was in your area, I'd give you a hand with this, nevertheless... good luck and post your findings if you isolate a problem.
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Old 03-29-2010, 02:11 PM   #12
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Thanks so much sprok3t! I already wire brushed EVERYTHING haha and im gonna pick up my voltmeter from a friends house and check after adding each wire like you said and figure out where there possibly could be a problem.
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Old 03-29-2010, 03:56 PM   #13
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sorry about all the questions, i feel like an idiot. lol But how do you measure with the voltmeter?

Do you put the pos lead to the pos post and neg lead to neg post with all the stock wire to get a base reading and each additional ground do you put the pos lead to pos terminal and neg lead to each ground wire? then to check the alternator wire do u crank it with ignition diconnected?
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Old 03-29-2010, 05:42 PM   #14
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stock wiring also has fusible links, which you should NOT replace.
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Old 03-29-2010, 07:05 PM   #15
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I put a fuse in wherever the stock wiring had fuses
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Old 03-31-2010, 12:19 AM   #16
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I wasn't a fan of where he put the negative on the strut tower. If he removed that ring, then it would be better. i think that ring is aluminum or a something cheap. There is another bolt just below that, that's the one I'll be using when doing my big 3 upgrade.

These guys also kept the factory wires and did the big 3 as an enhancement:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SL-9o5kSgv4
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Old 03-31-2010, 12:31 AM   #17
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Thanks so much everyone i found the culprit! it was a ground loop from the alternator casing to the frame, and i had grounded two coil packs to 2 different spots and that seemed to loop it also, once that was removed and only one pack grounded i have no dimming at all

And eggie, I was also curious as to the plate on the strut tower but figured it was ok, and now i moved it to that bolt i believe you were talking about and it seems much better

Once i get back home i think im gonna put the factory ground back on along with the 0 AWG just to be safe.

Thanks Again!

Heres a few pics

Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 03-31-2010, 02:19 AM   #18
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glad you found the problem. Looks crazy with all the 0ga running around in there.
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Old 03-31-2010, 02:47 AM   #19
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Thanks again i thiink it looks really good but i know many people are gonna say its overkill, (which i 100% agree), but when i had 50 extra feet of 0 AWG, I thought i'd try it. haha
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Old 03-31-2010, 03:54 AM   #20
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Glad you were able to find the problem Glowbox. Glad it was something simple as well... just not simple to find. Yes, it's overkill. Now it's time to replace that battery with something with better drain/charge capacity, kinetic anyone?
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Old 03-31-2010, 03:54 AM
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