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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, folks,

The WSM for my 2014 Escape 2.0 EB (Titanium) has me perplexed.

I replaced the battery a few days ago and did the BLM reset; looking at the BdyCM parameters in FORScan, I’m confused by what I’m seeing: when I top up the battery with an external charger, I hookup the negative lead to the vehicle grounding stud to ensure charge is registered through the battery current sensor, but the SOC does not change at all contrary to what the WSM suggests. In fact, it is listed as the preferred method of charging to ensure Amp-hours are properly registered by not bypassing the sensor with a hookup to the negative post directly.

I notice there are other variables that do not populate in FORScan - all related to cumulative charge and discharge during engine on, off, and sleep states. These do not contain any values whatsoever. Perhaps the 2014 version doesn’t use these fields???

Also I notice when the vehicle enters sleep mode the module ceases to report to the OBDII port any longer (forgive my unfamiliarity with the nature of these protocols and interfaces, this may be expected). Does this suggest the module itself is inactive and not using its charge accumulators during sleep mode? If the BLM is not tracking AHs in and out when the vehicle is sleeping using these accumulators, then how on earth is it supposed to do its job as indicated in the WSM.

My only success in updating the SOC after a full external recharge is to let the vehicle sleep for 8 hours and let it relearn the estimated SOC.

Is there something likely wrong with my BLM electronics? The sensor itself appears to be fine so far as I can tell, in that the battery currents are in line with expected loads during ignition on / engine off conditions.

Thanks, all,

BP
 

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Hi, folks,

The WSM for my 2014 Escape 2.0 EB (Titanium) has me perplexed.

I replaced the battery a few days ago and did the BLM reset; looking at the BdyCM parameters in FORScan, I’m confused by what I’m seeing: when I top up the battery with an external charger, I hookup the negative lead to the vehicle grounding stud to ensure charge is registered through the battery current sensor, but the SOC does not change at all contrary to what the WSM suggests. In fact, it is listed as the preferred method of charging to ensure Amp-hours are properly registered by not bypassing the sensor with a hookup to the negative post directly.

I notice there are other variables that do not populate in FORScan - all related to cumulative charge and discharge during engine on, off, and sleep states. These do not contain any values whatsoever. Perhaps the 2014 version doesn’t use these fields???

Also I notice when the vehicle enters sleep mode the module ceases to report to the OBDII port any longer (forgive my unfamiliarity with the nature of these protocols and interfaces, this may be expected). Does this suggest the module itself is inactive and not using its charge accumulators during sleep mode? If the BLM is not tracking AHs in and out when the vehicle is sleeping using these accumulators, then how on earth is it supposed to do its job as indicated in the WSM.

My only success in updating the SOC after a full external recharge is to let the vehicle sleep for 8 hours and let it relearn the estimated SOC.

Is there something likely wrong with my BLM electronics? The sensor itself appears to be fine so far as I can tell, in that the battery currents are in line with expected loads during ignition on / engine off conditions.

Thanks, all,

BP
I have observed similar. My "guess" at this point is that it takes the vehicle 8 hours of inactivity to properly register any change in battery condition from the external charge. I believe that this is even mentioned in the WSM (or at least that is how I intepret it). This seems to be pretty consistent behaviour (any therefore normal) as I experience the same in both my 2016 and 2018 which I charge regulararly due to the low mileage both my wife an I put on the cars. I also have observed kind of fluky readings from my battery tester just after charge which uses capactence calcularions.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
I have observed similar. My "guess" at this point is that it takes the vehicle 8 hours of inactivity to properly register any change in battery condition from the external charge. I believe that this is even mentioned in the WSM (or at least that is how I intepret it). This seems to be pretty consistent behaviour (any therefore normal) as I experience the same in both my 2016 and 2018 which I charge regulararly due to the low mileage both my wife an I put on the cars. I also have observed kind of fluky readings from my battery tester just after charge which uses capactence calcularions.
Thanks for the similar observation. The WSM suggests that you need to let the vehicle sleep to get a new SOC estimation if you bypass the sensor such that the BLM is incapable of capturing the charge flow into the battery. However, it says that you should connect the negative charger cable to the vehicle ground stud as a preferred method to ensure the battery sensor can capture the charge flow and update the SOC as charge accumulates, which means that relearning the SOC via sleep-mode becomes unnecessary.

You see this in action when the engine is running and the alternator voltage is sufficiently high; with positive amperes flowing to the battery, the SOC reading starts to creep up. The WSM suggests the BLM has the capability to do this when the engine is off and an external charger is properly connected, but my observation has not been consistent with this at all. In any case, engine on, off, or vehicle sleeping, the “battery cumulative charge” variables reported by FORScan don’t ever nudge (or report any numeric value for that matter).
 

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Thanks for the similar observation. The WSM suggests that you need to let the vehicle sleep to get a new SOC estimation if you bypass the sensor such that the BLM is incapable of capturing the charge flow into the battery. However, it says that you should connect the negative charger cable to the vehicle ground stud as a preferred method to ensure the battery sensor can capture the charge flow and update the SOC as charge accumulates, which means that relearning the SOC via sleep-mode becomes unnecessary.

You see this in action when the engine is running and the alternator voltage is sufficiently high; with positive amperes flowing to the battery, the SOC reading starts to creep up. The WSM suggests the BLM has the capability to do this when the engine is off and an external charger is properly connected, but my observation has not been consistent with this at all. In any case, engine on, off, or vehicle sleeping, the “battery cumulative charge” variables reported by FORScan don’t ever nudge (or report any numeric value for that matter).
I have checked the state of charge using my OBDII reader (not Forscan) both immediately after and the next day. As I recall, there was a difference. In addition, I have noticed that it takes a while for my S/S to begin engaging again after a charge. All of this suggests to me that the computer takes some time to think about all this and get it in its memory correctly. Scientific?? Absolutely not. This stuff really blows my mind but it seems to work. I am an old dog and it is hard to teach me new tricks but some stuff does sink in over time.
 
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I notice there are other variables that do not populate in FORScan - all related to cumulative charge and discharge during engine on, off, and sleep states. These do not contain any values whatsoever. Perhaps the 2014 version doesn’t use these fields???
Could it be an issue with ForScan's programming for the Escape/ Kuga rather than the vehicle's BMS? What ForScan can do seems to vary from model to model, with the Kuga/ Escape platform seeming to be one of the less supported models.

I've never checked my battery via ForScan but do regularly top up the battery with an external charger. I've fitted a permanent connection plug for the charger in the engine bay- using the negative post on the strut tower and a fused wire directly to the positive battery terminal.

I did have the Sync 2 shut down prematurely after turning the ignition off once - after a 20 minute trip- with "Shutting down to conserve battery power" (or similar wording) displayed. That was when I'd left it sitting for a week or more and hadn't topped up the battery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Quite possibly. That said, I find it quite interesting that the SOC variable seems to track quite well when the engine is running, as I watch it increment as the charge flows into the battery while the alternator is running.

I left my charger hooked up overnight on float at 13.6V for 14 hours or so, and then connected the ELM interface to FORScan and turned the ignition on. It correctly registered the battery voltage, but said SOC was equal to 72% on a brand new topped up battery. Batter age was about 3 days per BdyCM. I am highly suspicious of that especially in light of th specific WSM manual guidance on charge accumulation tracking by the BLM. Now, if I leave it to sleep for 8 hours then the SOC parameter changes to 92-95%, but the WSM suggests this sleep period is not necessary if you bleed charge in via the ground stud (ie the negative cable).

Either my BLM is not behaving correctly or something is off with the original 2014 firmware with respect to how it’s outlined in the WSM.

To add some context here, this is my third OEM battery since I bought the vehicle new in mid 2014. If the SOC estimation is garbage then I know the battery is being worked too hard. With the regenerative charging system I’m sure this may be the case anyway, especially in a hot Georgia climate. My warranty is good for another 5 months so if the root cause is solvable I would like to resolve it in the warranty period.

I could just buy a new battery every three years and accept my fate, but knowing that what the WSM says vs what the vehicle appears to do are very disparate, I would like to get a sense of how others witness their vehicles behavior to help me benchmark before the dealer tells me “no warranty related problem reproducible”.
 

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To add some context here, this is my third OEM battery since I bought the vehicle new in mid 2014.
Have you got the engine stop/ start system on your Escape? That is likely to kill starter batteries at an early age.
 

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I just went out and hooked mine up to charge (it's overdue...) and checked with ForScan. After finding some relevant BCMII values I checked them before hooking up the battery charger (a 10 Amp 3 stage charger.)

Prior to connecting the charger (vehicle parked in garage and not driven for around 7 days) I had :
BATTERY_AGE 1422 Vehicle Battery- Days in Service
BAT_CURRENT -10.38 Amperes Vehicle Battery - Current
BAT_MON_REG Active Battery Monitor/ Regenerative Charge State
BAT_ST_CHRG 45% Vehicle Battery -State of Charge
BAT_TEMP 22C Vehicle Battery- Estimated Temperature
BAT_V_DSD 10.60V Battery Charging Voltage Desired

I didn't notice an actual voltage reading in the BCMII area? But two important figures I've highlighted above. There were 10.38 Amps being drained with the ignition "ON" (engine off), entertainment off and HVAC off; plus the State Of Charge being 45%.

I then connected the charger and turned it on- there was a charging current of 7 Amps displayed on it's analogue gauge.

I checked ForScan again.... The BAT_CURRENT value had dropped to -3.38 Amps - which matches up with the charger showing 7 Amps being fed to the battery. I'd always assumed my 10 Amp charger was more than capable of keeping up the charge when I was playing around with ForScan/ FoCCCus- but that's apparently not the case! Something to note is I've seen the charger supply an indicated 10 Amps on other batteries- but there mustn't have been enough voltage difference to force that much current into the battery?

After about 10 minutes I also saw the BAT_ST_CHRG value drop to 44%.

At that stage I disconnected ForScan and left the vehicle to charge. I'll check it again later tonight (~6hrs time.)

The BAT_V_DSD (Battery Charging Voltage Desired) value of 10.60V has thrown me a bit- I would have thought that would be in the high 14.xV range given the state of charge? Perhaps that would have changed if I'd started the engine???
 
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Just checked it after around 8hrs charging. The charger appeared to be in float mode, the current had dropped right off to around 1 Amp.

I left the charger on and checked Forscan again. The BAT_ST_CHG was sitting at 65%, so it had indeed increased by 20% by charging alone.

@gapreece check that value BAT_CURRENT with your charger turned on and off. It should change in value when the charger is turned on.

At a guess, my battery is starting to get on in age and some sulfation of the plates has occurred- which is affecting it accepting the full charge current. I also don't know if it's a normal flooded maintenance free or an AGM, in theory the AGM charge voltage is higher. My other (Ctek) 7 Amp charger has an AGM setting.

I swapped chargers and have left the Ctek on charge overnight.
 

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Just checked it after around 8hrs charging. The charger appeared to be in float mode, the current had dropped right off to around 1 Amp.

I left the charger on and checked Forscan again. The BAT_ST_CHG was sitting at 65%, so it had indeed increased by 20% by charging alone.

@gapreece check that value BAT_CURRENT with your charger turned on and off. It should change in value when the charger is turned on.

At a guess, my battery is starting to get on in age and some sulfation of the plates has occurred- which is affecting it accepting the full charge current. I also don't know if it's a normal flooded maintenance free or an AGM, in theory the AGM charge voltage is higher. My other (Ctek) 7 Amp charger has an AGM setting.

I swapped chargers and have left the Ctek on charge overnight.
Really appreciate tests and write up. I would be interested to know your findings after:
1. Charging all night
2. Charging all night And then let sit with nothing going on for 8-10 hours.
 

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After being left overnight (the Ctek would have gone into "maintenance mode") the SOC has risen to 71%. I'll leave it on for a few more hours but will have to disconnect it as we're going to hit over 42C today. I don't like leaving chargers running in that sort of heat.
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for digging into this! I have seen the battery current reading change as you described when the external charger is hooked up. Sounds like yours doesnt update in the way the WSM suggests either.

Are you able to see the charge accumulation variables in Forscan? I can’t recall their names off the top of my head but they are for cumulative charge and discharge during engine on and off conditions. Mind don’t ever change.

The battery desired voltage variable changes according to the smart regenerative charging algorithm. After cranking the engine, it jumps to 14+ volts, then it bounces around from 12.3V to 13.6V based on the SOC and driving conditions. Mine says 10.6V with the engine off, which basically means it will run to dead.

You probably have flooded type battery if you don’t have start/stop. AGMs are necessary for start/stop to avoid cycling the battery to death.
 

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I left it charging for a few more hours yesterday but it only rose to 72% SOC. I then locked the vehicle and left it overnight. This morning the SOC is at 88%, so the SOC calculation done when the vehicle is left for "x" hours with below "y" current drain did occur. So mine appears to be working exactly as the WSM describes.

Are you able to see the charge accumulation variables in Forscan? I can’t recall their names off the top of my head but they are for cumulative charge and discharge during engine on and off conditions. Mind don’t ever change.
What module are they in- the BCMII as well?

I've put my 10 Amp (basic 3 stage) charger on it again. That charger is well ventilated with an aluminium casing and thermal load activated fan- so it runs cool. The Ctek charger is plastic and sealed, it gets very warm (much warmer than I'd like for something left unattended), even when it's in the final float charging/ maintenance mode.

You probably have flooded type battery if you don’t have start/stop.
I looked on ETIS and it said something like "Standard Duty" battery? So I'm thinking just a generic maintenance free/ "flooded" lead acid.
 
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Question: does the use of Forscan and related equipment produce a current draw greater than 300 ma? If so, manual says that can mess up the computer processing all this.
 

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When using Forscan you normally need the ignition in the on potion to activate the modules. So I would say you would have quite a few amp draw even with all accessories off. Unless you can get to the battery monitor system without energizing the ignition??? I haven't tried that, I just started using Forscan before that i always used Bluedriver, That will not even connect until you activate the ignition. I just got a wireless connection for Forscan lite on my phone and it connects by wifi, I only tried it on my 03 F150 because it was in a heated garage and i'm sure I had to turn the ignition on for it to connect.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I left it charging for a few more hours yesterday but it only rose to 72% SOC. I then locked the vehicle and left it overnight. This morning the SOC is at 88%, so the SOC calculation done when the vehicle is left for "x" hours with below "y" current drain did occur. So mine appears to be working exactly as the WSM describes.
OK great, this is exactly how mine behaves. I dont have the exact language of the WSM to hand, but i am sure that this SOC estimation routine is described for when you bypass the current sensor with a direct hookup to the negative post. The WSM indicates that connecting an external charger to the body ground/earth will recapture all amp-hours bles back into the battery for proper SOC estimation.

The way that both our vehicles seem to behave is that whether you charge via the terminals or via the current sensor, you have to undergo the same process to register a battery as (nearly) full.

This experiment got me thinking, because i noticed my alternator was running at 14.4V for a lonnnng time on what I knew was a full battery, because I charged it myself externally via the negative lead and current sensor as preferred by the WSM. I was then surprised to learn the SOC was estimated only at 70% for a new battery, hence the demand for high re-charging amps I suspect. Overcharging a battery can contribute to its untimely demise.

The variables in the BdyCM module i am referring to are:

CUM_DIS_SLP
CUM_DIS_RUN
CUM_DIS_OFF
CUM_CHG_ON

The photo I have of the screenshot of theee cuts the names off a bit, so those are close guesses without running FORScan again.

Thanks!
 

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I dont have the exact language of the WSM to hand, but i am sure that this SOC estimation routine is described for when you bypass the current sensor with a direct hookup to the negative post.
From memory the WSM says it's a normal part of the battery charging cycle, as it's a more accurate way to measure SOC.
Overcharging a battery can contribute to its untimely demise.
Yes, but that shouldn't occur if you're using a decent 3 stage (or higher) charger. They're usually fine left permanently connected ( always read the instructions!)
 

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Question: does the use of Forscan and related equipment produce a current draw greater than 300 ma?
Yes, I posted the current draw in one of my previous posts while using ForScan. It was over 10 Amps (Including 2 dash cams, HVAC and entertainment off.) I've been very quickly checking the SOC before it states dropping.
 

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Yes, I posted the current draw in one of my previous posts while using ForScan. It was over 10 Amps (Including 2 dash cams, HVAC and entertainment off.) I've been very quickly checking the SOC before it states dropping.
According to the WSM, that draw exceeds the 300 mA threshold and prevents the BCM from doing its work on calculating SOC correctly. At least that is the way I read it.
 

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According to the WSM, that draw exceeds the 300 mA threshold and prevents the BCM from doing its work on calculating SOC correctly. At least that is the way I read it.
But you're only using ForScan to check the SOC- after leaving the vehicle sitting with everything off for the required period. You don't leave ForScan running while the vehicle is sitting there.

I just double checked the parameters for the calibration to take placed- it's <100mA for >3hrs. "The battery monitoring system requires calibration at regular intervals of no greater than 7 days. If a recalibration hasn't been done the exact SOC of the battery cannot be confirmed."

I also came across the bit mentioned elsewhere about sulfation occurring if the battery is at 80% SOC for a long period of time and I get the feeling they've made a mistake in the WSM (or more left out an important qualifier.) I think it's meant to say sulfation can occur when the battery is at less than 80% SOC for a long period of time. The reason is they then go on to say a "refresh charge" is done to fix the risk of sulfation. The refresh charge involves charging the battery at a higher voltage of 15.2V. Charging the battery to a higher Voltage is going to raise the SOC higher than 80%- it doesn't make any sense to charge the battery at a higher voltage if >80% SOC causes sulfation. (Plus it goes against every other website regarding charging lead acid batteries and how to reduce sulfation taking place. The normal recommendation is to fully charge the battery as soon as possible after discharging it. You shouldn't store them partially discharged.)
 
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