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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a 2003 Kawasaki Prairie 650.. I am writing this approximately 3 weeks after doing this repair and making sure everything was performing perfectly. I will add some photos with more detail soon. I was having a problem with the battery either being dead or turning the engine over but to weak to make a spark. If the battery is just a little low on these ATV's it will turn the engine over fine but will make a tiny spark and then none. While the engine is turning over the battery will drop just below the threshold needed to make a good hot spark. In order to fix this, I first checked my charging voltage and found it to be 12.6 volts.. Way to low. I replaced the Voltage Regulator and was then getting over 14 volts.. Just what is needed.

Then it happened again about a week later when I went to use the ATV. It was turning over a little slow with no spark. I charged the battery, checked the charging voltage again, it was over 14 volts. I then checked to see if the battery had a Parasitic Draw. It did, it had a big one. The usual culprit of the parasitic voltage draw is the Electronic Control Box. It is the smaller of the Two Control units under the the seat. The larger one is the CDI Box.
The smaller Electronic Control box gets constant power and is the one you hear controlling the Engine Brake and other things when you shut off the ignition. The only other things that get constant power are one side of the Ignition Switch, The Fan and the Digital Instrument Cluster.

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Sometimes the Engine control box will go bad and constantly draw power or the problem could be with the Engine Brake causing the Engine control box to keep hunting for the engine brake position.. I disconnected the Engine control box and the parasitic draw dropped almost completely. The last bit of Parasitic Draw went away by then unplugging the Digital Instrument cluster.
I had taken out the engine brake and put in a SGROI INNOVATIONS, Knight Engine Brake Bypass. I did contact them and they said when the Engine control box goes bad it will keep drawing current. Other than the current draw while the engine was off the box appeared to be operating properly. I decided to get rid of all the Parasitic draw when the key was off. Except for the Fan, I wanted that to still have constant power to cool the radiator if needed when shutting the ignition off. As far the Digital Instrument Cluster it only needs constant power for the clock and I have never looked at or used the clock, so I will disable the constant power.
I had to make modifications in two areas. One by the Digital Instrument Cluster Plug and one by the Fuse Panel under the seat.

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Under the seat I tapped into the Accessory lead at the Fuse panel to give me a switched 12 volts when the Key is on. I then cut the wire to the fuse for the engine control box. I then wired up a small relay to feed power to the engine control box only when the key is on. I will give pictures and a better description soon of how I did this.
At this time you could take apart the ATV and use same power you are using to power the control box with the key on and run a wire to the Digital Instrument Cluster. Instead I chose to take off the plastic cover at the Radiator Cap and the handle bar cover. Then unplug the Digital Instrument Cluster harness. On the harness side cut the white wire, that is the 12 volt constant. I then put quick disconnect connectors on both sides if I want to reattach them later. I tapped into the ignition switch lead that gets power when the key is turned on. I ran that to the white wire going up to the Digital Instrument Cluster. Now when the key is off you have 0 Parasitic Draw. The only thing you lose is the Clock. Now the ATV can go pretty much forever between rides without the battery draining. If you still have your engine break then once you turn on the ignition give it time for the Brake Actuator to finish hunting for it's location it may already be in the correct position and not hunt at all, and then start it. You should have no problems.
 

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Tap in splice connectors are a bad idea. They don't seal properly, and on an atv that is more than likely going to see a lot of mud, water and snow, they tend to corrode quickly. Better to solder and shrink wrap any electrical connections to keep them as water proof as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Tap in splice connectors are a bad idea. They don't seal properly, and on an atv that is more than likely going to see a lot of mud, water and snow, they tend to corrode quickly. Better to solder and shrink wrap any electrical connections to keep them as water proof as possible.
I agree that the best thing to do is to solder and use glued heat shrink tube. But the back of the fuse panel has no protection whatsoever it is just open to the elements. That is where I tapped. Also when using T-Taps as opposed to Scotch Locks in all my years I have never seen a T-Tap Corrode. I have seen people use the wrong size/color which causes a bad connection and corrosion. This was a quick repair to get back up and running on the property with no battery drain. I am also sure my OCD will kick in not long from now and I will go back and Solder and Heat Shrink them.
 
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