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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Probably gonna get flamed pretty heavy for this but meh 馃し what can ya do? I'm having an assortment of issues with my '14 EX-L. Not super inclined mechanically but learning so bear with me

On board electronics bog down (a/c blower, interior lights, head lights, etc) when I turn the wheel especially in reverse.

Is this likely due to operator error? Possibly. Recent electronics related mods include 8000k LED low beams, Xenon HID (6500k) high beams, 1200w amp (LOC to rear deck speakers) and 2 12s 馃槵

A friend suggested the issue could be my battery ground not being a sufficient gauge to handle the additional load but from a bit of research I'm leaning toward overcharged/damaged alternator, bad battery, or something else that's gonna cost me more than I wanna spend. High output alternator? New battery? Faulty wiring. Grounding out? I don't know where to start testing.

Any thoughts on advice would be greatly appreciated. I browse this forum alot but mostly just as a lurker. Found a lot of good info and appreciate all the posts that have helped me thus far. Here's to hoping this one serves me well. (Copilot/ dash cat for reference)
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Disconnect your amp first and see if you have the same issue. Then disconnect your HIDs and see if the issue continues. If that doesn't fix it, it's not an issue with power draw.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Disconnect your amp first and see if you have the same issue. Then disconnect your HIDs and see if the issue continues. If that doesn't fix it, it's not an issue with power draw.
I've got amp run to fused switch so I can cut power to it at will as opposed the standard remote line to ACC 12V. HIDs just went in 2 days ago. Issue existed previous to them. It seems like I somehow damaged the alternator but dont wanna buy one just to find out that wasn't the issue. So if we eliminate lights, audio and alternator (hypothetically) what other potential causes could there be for the issue at hand?
 

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On board electronics bog down (a/c blower, interior lights, head lights, etc) when I turn the wheel especially in reverse.
Power steering is a weird beast. Normally, with a hydraulic system, there is less load on the belt when turning the steering wheel, as the fluid is not recirculating through bypass and back to inlet ...

... but we 9th Gen Civics have the even weirder electric power steering. There's more load on the alternator (and ergo more load on the serpentine belt) when turning the wheel.

... from a bit of research I'm leaning toward overcharged/damaged alternator, bad battery, or something else that's gonna cost me more than I wanna spend. High output alternator? New battery? Faulty wiring. Grounding out? I don't know where to start testing.
Let's say you're running at half the amplifier's rated capacity (let's call this a continuous duty cycle?). 600W. At 13.2V, that's 45A.

I don't know what the rest of our Civics use for steady state operation (EFI, spark and everything else on the CAN bus), but I'd guess that 35A or so, give or take a few, is not unreasonable.

Add A/C and lights (as well as turning the steering wheel), and you can add more ampere draw.

I'm willing to bet that the stock alternator is only about 100A, and your total load of music, A/C, and lights is way past the continuous duty cycle for the stock alternator.

A friend suggested the issue could be my battery ground not being a sufficient gauge to handle the additional load ...
Stock grounds tend only to be big enough to support the original vehicle electronics, plus other possible electronically supported OEM options. I recently fixed grounds on a Nissan Altima V6 by cleaning up the stock grounds and adding some 6 gauge cable with crimped lugs between a threaded boss on the transaxle and a welded threaded boss on the unibody.

OF
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Power steering is a weird beast. Normally, with a hydraulic system, there is less load on the belt when turning the steering wheel, as the fluid is not recirculating through bypass and back to inlet ...

... but we 9th Gen Civics have the even weirder electric power steering. There's more load on the alternator (and ergo more load on the serpentine belt) when turning the wheel.



Let's say you're running at half the amplifier's rated capacity (let's call this a continuous duty cycle?). 600W. At 13.2V, that's 45A.

I don't know what the rest of our Civics use for steady state operation (EFI, spark and everything else on the CAN bus), but I'd guess that 35A or so, give or take a few, is not unreasonable.

Add A/C and lights (as well as turning the steering wheel), and you can add more ampere draw.

I'm willing to bet that the stock alternator is only about 100A, and your total load of music, A/C, and lights is way past the continuous duty cycle for the stock alternator.

Stock grounds tend only to be big enough to support the original vehicle electronics, plus other possible electronically supported OEM options. I recently fixed grounds on a Nissan Altima V6 by cleaning up the stock grounds and adding some 6 gauge cable with crimped lugs between a threaded boss on the transaxle and a welded threaded boss on the unibody.

OF
I did consider this is an option after a friend shined some light on the logic of a bigger ground being sensible in more scenarios than strictly being an "amp to frame" application. I Haven't installed the new "thicc boi" just yet but ill update when I do. Much obliged.
 

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Yes, your friend (and installers with his knowledge) convinced me that even if I had a great ground path from amp to frame (or unibody), that still needs a path to the alternator (and/or negative side of the battery).

So, I did go with an additional "thicc boi" ( 馃槃 ) cable from frame to engine/trans, and brand new three-lug cable from battery to frame to engine/trans. All contact points sanded to shiny metal and then coated with dielectric grease prior to installing nuts or bolts. Once done, I sprayed these with Corrosion-X to make sure the grounds kept grounding, no matter what happened regarding rain dirt or low flooded areas.

OF
 
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