How To Find A Short Circuit In Your Car
Auto Engines,  Cars

How To Find A Short Circuit In Your Car?

Are you looking for an easy way to find shorts in the car? Some people or car owners may find it difficult to find an electric short in their car, finding it can be a time consuming and tough process for them. However, by using some easy methods suggested by us, you can make this process simpler for you.

Are you sick of electrical problems in the Honda Civic? There are many easy techniques and tools that you can use to make this tedious and completed task much easier. One is using a test light, and the other is using a multimeter.

The short circuits are not always risky but may cause serious damage to the engine and its parts. One should take precautions to prevent any such incident. The short circuits in the car mostly occur when a hot wire touches any other wire in the Fuse box. Due to this, extra current flows through the circuit and causes it to break.

This is the most common reason for short circuits. However, there are many other reasons as well which are responsible for a short circuit to occur. A few of those reasons are:

  • Defective plugs, switches, cords, and receptacles
  • Faulty wiring
  • Circuit overload
  • Broken insulation

Everyone cannot deny the fact that short circuits can be very dangerous at times. It may cause wires to catch fire. The huge amount of heat generated due to the flow of excess current may cause an explosion.

It is necessary that one detects a short circuit at an early stage. However, it is preferable to follow proper safety measures to avoid such incidents. One should use good quality fuse and circuit breakers. The circuit breakers are deployed to break the circuit as soon as extra current flows through it. This is helpful in minimizing the damage and helps in identifying the location of the faulty circuit.

short circuit in car

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Sometimes, even after using such equipment, it is hard to detect the location of a short circuit. In few cases where the wiring is a bit complicated, it is very hard to find the exact location of a short circuit. One should always be careful while looking out for the exact position of the fault. The main power supply should be switched while you are investigating or touching any other part close to it.

Most skilled mechanics can also take lots of time to trace short in your car. There may be several reasons behind short circuits; it may occur when the wiring becomes old, and sometimes it may happen if any particular part of your car deteriorates. A short circuit may occur in several parts of your car, but you should know how to find it. Here in this guide, we have mentioned some methods to find it and the process to fix it. These methods are easy to implement and make use of easily available tools. Moreover, the tools and equipment used in these methods are very affordable, too.

Find Short Circuits in Your Car by Using a Multimeter

This is a very easy method to find a short circuit in your car. To continue with this method, you will need few tools or equipment as below:

Let us now see how the process goes. First of all, open the hood of the car and search for the battery. If the light is not proper, you might need a torch or a flashlight. Once you find the battery, you have to detach the cable from the negative end of the battery. You will require a wrench here. All you have to do is to grip the screw on the negative end of the battery with a wrench and rotate it anti-clockwise. This will loosen the screw, and you can easily detach the cable.

The next step will involve the use of a multimeter. Set the multimeter to display 10 Amps. You need to ensure that the multimeter stays in the same position. Now connect the positive of the multimeter to the negative of the battery and the negative of the multimeter to the positive of the battery.

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As soon as you make the connection, you should observe the reading of the multimeter. If it reads 0 or nil, then reduce the multimeter amps to 9 and check the multimeter reading again. If it again displays 0 or Nil, repeat the process by lowering the multimeter amps by 1.

That means you have to make multimeter amps to 8, then 7, 6, 5, and so on till you reach 0. If it displays 0 for all the values from 10 to 0, that means that there is no short circuit. But if the values draw in any case, then it indicates that there is a short circuit.

For example, if the multimeter amps are set to 4 and then the multimeter reading shows 0, it means that there is no short circuit, but if it shows 4, then it means that there is a short circuit. Once the short circuit is confirmed, you can then examine the fuse to determine the position of a short circuit.

Finding a Short in a Car with Test Light

This is another method which is used to detect the short circuit. This method is useful for 12 Volts vehicles. All you need to perform the test using this method is a Test Light. This tool is easily available and affordable as well.

Let us look at the steps involved in this method.

short circuit in car

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  • First of all, you need to test the light itself.
  • To perform this test, you have to clamp the clip to the ground.
  • To do this, you can use the negative terminal of the battery, or you can use any metal surface of the car.
  • Now, touch the test light probe to the positive of the battery.
  • You may also use the fuse for this purpose.
  • If the light turns ON, it means that the test light is functioning properly.
  • Now, we may proceed to test for a short circuit using a test
  • You need to ground the test light properly to test the fuse condition.
  • You need to touch the test light probe to both sides of the fuse.
  • If it turns the test light ON, it means that the fuse is perfectly fine.
  • Now, if you observe that power is not supplied to any of the parts, such as the brake light, then you should use a test light to find the fault.
  • You should check the switch and the wiring using a Test. In this way, a properly grounded test light can be used to check the power supply to various parts, such as the Break light, cooling fan, fuel injector, etc.

These two methods will be very helpful in detecting the short circuit in your car. If you learn any of these, it will be great, as it may save your time and money. If you come across such problems, you will not have to roam around in search of a mechanic. Moreover, in case you get a mechanic, he will charge you a decent amount to detect the fuse and get it repaired.

The equipment such as a wrench, a multimeter, a test light, best spark plugs for BMW, are easily available and are affordable as well. You can also get this equipment online.