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I'm beginning to conclude I just don't drive it enough.
Do you have a fairly good quality digital multimeter that would allow you to make some simple measurements of battery voltage under various conditions?

I'm betting that your charging system is fine, and if your battery itself is in good condition, your only problem is not enough engine run time.

I'd also recommend that you consider investing in a quality battery maintainer (like a CTEK) and then you will always have your battery at full charge,

Driving long enough every week to keep the moisture boiled out of the oil is a different issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
I have a quality multimeter. I'll start taking some readings. Should have though of that. Regarding the battery tender, I store the FJ in very old garage that has no electricity.
Thanks for all your consideration to my problem.
 

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CVFJ,
Since you store your vehicle in an area without access to electricity perhaps you might consider installing a battery cut off switch. I've used these on other vehicles always installing them on the Negative cable. Makes disconnecting the battery simple by just turning a switch. You can use it when you know that your Cruiser is going to sit for a long period of time. You will of-course have to reset several systems after restoring power.

These cut-off switches are manufactured in various configurations, some with mounting brackets. Just insure that you purchase a switch with the proper amperage rating.

JU036100-2.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Very interesting. Did not know they made these for vehicles. I have an electrical shut for my RV, same idea. Thanks!
 

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I put a battery charger on my FJ (and a 2018 F-150 as well) to top off every week. Just not enough drive time happening during the pandemic.
 

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Very interesting. Did not know they made these for vehicles. I have an electrical shut for my RV, same idea. Thanks!
Probably not a good idea unless there are very specific circumstances that require a total battery disconnect, like shipping the vehicle a long distance.

Every time your battery is disconnected, you will lose some some of the adaptive learning data that is stored in the engine ECM. Fuel mixture trim data, transmission shift point adaptive learning data, etc. The engine & transmission might not operate 'optimally' until several driving cycles re-establish this data. Not a big deal, but you'll also lose your radio pre-sets.

You mentioned that you don't have AC power to the garage to run a battery tender. Is your area secure enough, and have enough sky exposure to put a small solar panel on the garage roof to help maintain battery state-of-charge?
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
I've contacted a contractor to trench a conduit to the garage and install electrical. That will solve the battery tender issue. Question: driving last night in the dark the FJ lights started flashing, kinda like a strobe. Is this typical of the same problem?
 

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I've contacted a contractor to trench a conduit to the garage and install electrical. That will solve the battery tender issue. Question: driving last night in the dark the FJ lights started flashing, kinda like a strobe. Is this typical of the same problem?
Which 'lights' were flashing? Instrument panel? Headlights? Everything?

This is definitely NOT normal, and sounds like you have an intermittent connection somewhere in the battery connections or wiring.

At the very beginning of your 'battery charging' saga, did you disconnect BOTH battery terminal clamps, clean everything down to bare, bright metal, reattach the clamps, and firmly tighten the clamp bolts?

And also check the ground connection from the battery's negative cable to the inner fender liner by unbolting it, cleaning clamp and sheet metal down to mare metal, re-connecting, and then spraying the connection with corrosion inhibitor?

Any resistance in the battery circuit can inhibit proper charging of the battery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
The headlights were the most noticeable, but I feel the dash panel lights were noticeably diming. The head lights flashing were a bit embracing. I'm surprised the car in front of me didn't pull over, it was that obvious.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
I have not done any maintenance to the battery since this issue started. I'm a tax accountant with little extra time for a few more weeks. I have scheduled a mechanic to diagnose the problem later this month, but every day it seems to be getting worse. The battery isn't very old, maybe 16 months. I had it installed by a mechanic and new cables were installed at the same time. Checking the ground is good idea, I'll do that later today.
 
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