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Thanks! I do have multi-meters and will do some checking when I have a chance. I am actually taking it for a couple hundred mile drive today just to see if I make it :D
 

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You might take 10 or 20 minutes; to swing by a auto parts store and have the charging system check, performed, it might save you a break down and tow! Let us know; how things go, what you experience on your test trip and we can go from there. Thanks!
 

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I got about 4 blocks and went to roll the window up. I accidentally pulled the master window switch, the dash warning lights came on and the car started sputtering. I let go of the switch and it ran OK but lights stayed on. I turned around and came home. I tried the window switch and window went down but once again a sputtering, so I rolled it up and left it. I took my truck on the little trip I had planned :/
 

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Hmm, sounds like a low battery and your charging system, is not working or charging, at a very low voltage. When you tried to roll the window down; you were using power from the battery and because, it was low and probably, you are not getting a charge from the alternator, the ignition, was not getting enough juice, to run correctly! This was happening to me; when my battery and alternator went out, I ended up having to replace, both of them. I think in my case; the alternator was going bad and the battery went dead, I tried to charge it a number of times and I killed the battery.

Definitely, time to diagnose the charging system and check over everything, make sure you put everything back the way it was supposed to and test, for good output from alternator and have the battery tested, to make sure it is good.

Let us know; the results of your testing and we can go from there. Thanks! ;)
 

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I installed a new battery and still had issues. I installed a new alternator and still have the issue. I just checked and there is 13.8V at alternator, but only 11.2V on the battery itself. I need to find out why it is not getting from alternator to battery.
 

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Did you check the charge wire; from the battery to the alternator, this is a common problem and the wire, tend to get internally corroded, building up resistance. You can buy another vw part; that will most likely fail again or make your own. There are also, some aftermarket companies; that are making some really nice replacements with higher gauge/quality wire and that could be a option, as well, if you don't want to make your own.

To troubleshoot the problem; follow the steps in this video and he shows you have to make a cable as well, if you decide to go that route:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fDdgs5bqzZg
 

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Here are some premade versions; made by aftermarket companies, typically small specialty shops:

NOTE: you might measure, you original cable and confirm, that it will be long enough, as most are made for the Mark IV GOLF or JETTA:

MKIV Alternator to Fuse Box Cable
Clusters: By Litke LLC

$45.00

4AWG (Black)

OR

$55.00

2AWG (Red)

Product Details
Replacement alternator to fuse box on top of battery cable. Common issue on MKIVs which can lead to melted fuse boxes and charging/running problems. These cables are made using high strand count copper cables so they are extremely flexible then covered in nylon braiding for added robustness. Terminals are F crimped, dip soldered, then glue lined heat shrunk.

Have stock sized 4AWG cable (black braided) as well as a larger 2AWG (red braided) style available.

Comes with new nut for fuse box stud. 2AWG version may require trimming of the slot on some fuse boxes so the lid closes.

https://www.facebook.com/commerce/products/2748042875270862/

Another vendor, we have had; a number of members install his wiring harness kits and have had good feedback on them:

http://innovativewiring.com/?page_id=5332

More wiring options and types:

http://innovativewiring.com/?s=volkswagen&submit=Search

Feedback and photos; of the innovative wiring kit, installed by a member here:

https://www.newbeetle.org/forums/1-8-liter-turbo/154456-innovative-wiring-set.html

As discussed in the thread; you could use the photos of the two vendors, as a guide to make your own wires and it could be more affordable, if you like to do that sort of thing or just buy the hareness, from either of the two companies and be done with it! :) Let us know, what you decide to do and how it works out for you! Thanks! :)
 

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I ordered a factory harness with all the plug ends on it, I am going to replace the cable in that video with a beefier one also. I will update next week after I get parts and get them installed. I am thinking of making the cable with 2/0 cable like I used on my backhoe.
 

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Sounds good; this info from your upgrade can help others and i need to upgrade mine as well! I hope to learn more; from your install and upgrades, new parts! Thanks! :)
 

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Car sputtering

I installed a new battery and still had issues. I installed a new alternator and still have the issue. I just checked and there is 13.8V at alternator, but only 11.2V on the battery itself. I need to find out why it is not getting from alternator to battery.
Sounds to me like your problem could be the fuel pump relay. You'd be surprised how many components it powers up. I checked the schematic a while back and noticed that the window regulator ECU is effected by it and the doors latch mechanism also. The fuel pump relay also has a signal coming from the main ECU if you're involved in a crash. U might consider replacing the fuel pump relay.
 

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Update!!!! Today I installed the new wiring harness for the alternator. While I had it apart I made a new ground cable set up. I have a crimping machine and cable on hand so I made the ground cable out of 1/0 cable and soldered the ends on after tinning the cable and then filled the end with solder and covered with heat shrink tubing.

I let it idle with everything running for 20 minutes and I maintained 14.47 volts. That is headlights, for lights, seat warmers, A/C on, heater fan on high, Monsoon stereo cranked up with the bass bumping. I drove it around for another 20 minutes and everything worked great. On a side note the check engine light is no longer on!! I am thinking the engine codes came from a bad or dirty ground! Friday I will give it a road trip to test it over a fair drive of 100 miles each way!

Did I see somewhere that someone was selling the upgraded fuse box that goes on top of battery on here? I did mine but I might have been a touch rough on the plastic...lol


THANK YOU EVERYONE FOR INFO AND HELPFUL HINTS!!
 

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Yes, smp and motorking; have made aftermarket fuse boxes and engineered changes to improve the fusebox over the stock vw design.

https://www.newbeetle.org/forums/questions-issues-concerns-problems-new-beetle/116050-melting-fuse-boxes-new-improved-design-solutions-tech-smart.html#/topics/116050?page=1&_k=1cov10

Did you happen, to take any photos of your home made ground cable design and the tools you used (crimper, etc). I have been trying to figure out; what raw cable, intermediate connectors, end connectors, crimping tools and in the case of battery cables, high quality clamps to use. Any info or photos; you would be willing to share would be great!

In your case, it sounds like the replacement of the alternator charge harness and ground cables, were definitely needed. This aeema to aupport the possibility of poor grounding, reisitance in the old wiring harness being a contributing factor to poor charging levels and could cause the melting of the fuse boxes as well.
 

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PS: any thoughts on the replacement genuine vw alterntor wiring harness ? Do you feel it is poor quality and is the wire gauge too small, for the needs of the alternator/charging system? Did you considor, adding heavier gauge wire ir making yiur own improved version of the charge harness? Thanks!
 

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I did mot take pics of the cables I made, but I probably can take some of the cable and ends as I have more. I have a Weatherhead T420 Coll-O-Crimp, hose crimping machine for hydraulic hoses, but I have a crimping die for battery ends and A/C lines. I buy ends at NAPA, they are ends you can solder on, but they work well in the crimper. I changed the ground cable from stock, I made 2 cables instead of putting a T in the middle with an eyelet.

The stock wiring harness seems ok, In my case it was 13 years old before it had to be replaced, so if it makes it another 10 years, I will be happy. I did not consider making my own cable, but if I have any issues with it again, I will definitely be making a monster cable with some 1/0 or possibly 2/0 cable.

On another note the check engine light came on this morning as my fiancé drove to work. I will delve into them issues another day.
 

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Ground cable

Good to hear you found the problem. I started a thread a few years back titled "CAUTION" which I posted pictures & problems with corroding ground cables on these beetles.
 

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Bad news. After driving it for a few weeks, coming home today the lights started coming on and we barely limped it home. Battery is reading 10.36 volts. Fuses are all good, but the post the wire from battery attaches to is black. This is getting old!!
 

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You might double check; the tests shown in this video and see if there are any problems: (maybe increasing the gauge of the charge wire would help?):


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fDdgs5bqzZg

You might look at the improved designed fuseboxes; by MotorKing and smp; which have attempted to address, the inherent weaknesses in the stock fusebox design. Note: the TechSmart product video; emphasizes the testing for amperage and correcting the problem, if out if spec; as the problem will reoccur, if the primary issue isn't resolved.

https://www.newbeetle.org/forums/questions-issues-concerns-problems-new-beetle/116050-melting-fuse-boxes-new-improved-design-solutions-tech-smart.html#/topics/116050
 

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I have upgraded my fuse box to a much larger gauge charge wire, and I did the redesign of the new fuse box as was showing video. I also installed a new alternator, alternator wiring harness, ground cables (1 gauge cable), and new battery. I have a wedding to get ready for so this will have to wait a few days, sadly we wanted to drive the bug on our special day.
 

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Well, it sounds like; you need to do some testing and see what the results are, the video outlines some things to check. Let us know'; how it goes and what you figure out. Thanks.
 
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