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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The engine compartment grounds are horrible IMHO. During my early days i used to design and build crazy audio enclosures, and electrical systems to run it. Back when i was MECP certified, one of the basic but very important ideas, is that what ever gauge you have as a power cable coming out from the positive battery terminal, should equal the gauge of the ground cable. Its not like that on 90% of vehicles, and the Kona is one of those. The 1.6t has two 4 gauge wires coming off the positive terminal, and a tiny 8 or 10 gauge wire grounding the battery. Granted, its a very short wire, maybe 5 inches long at most, and should be fine with stock electrical components, but you may run into issues with upgraded lighting, stereo, accessories, etc. I have not yet changed out the negative battery cable, because im probably going to end up replacing the entire terminal. That said, i did change the tiny engine to chassis, and transmission to chassis grounds, as shown below. Both cables replaced by 0/1 gauge ofc cable, crimped, soldered, and heat-shrinked. Also, the OE grounds points are painted, they are just using the bolt itself as a ground point, I fixed that too. Some people may complain about a slightly longer wire being used, but 0/1 gauge wire doesn't move that much, so to add some slack due to a moving engine/transmission, they end up being a tad longer, while keeping zero ohms resistance. On a side note, notice that the OE transmission ground cable is larger then both the engine ground and negative battery cables, Suggesting a higher electrical load then the latter. Here we go.

Transmission Ground.
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Engine Ground.
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Transmission chassis ground point.

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Main engine pic, you can see new engine to chassis ground in upper left corner.
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Discussion Starter #2
As a quick update, replacing these two ground cables seemed to have an effect. Prior to this, under normal driving conditions, at night (headlamps/fogs on), the voltage reported by the ECM is higher then usual. Normal voltage drift is 13.2 to 13.8 volts according to the scangage under load. Now it sits at a constant 14.4v under load.
 

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@1fastKona , Totally agree about the minimal grounding techniques used by the OEM. Just enough to get things running. Especially the ground attachment points not being prepped for the contacts. With all the sensitive electronics onboard, grounding importance should be more prominent in their quality control. You also create “noise” in the electronics due to arcing from bad connections.. The kona has a dc to dc converter to maintain proper voltage for the electronics.. Maybe that wouldn’t be necessary if they used your grounding updates.
Thanks for sharing.. Those pics are excellent And detailed.
The auto industry once predicted that cars would need 48v systems by 2020 because of increased electrical demands..
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I noticed i missed 2 important pictures. Both have to do with the battery ground. 1st picture is a cropped photo showing the battery ground, the 2nd picture is the chassis battery ground location (red bolt), and just below it you will see the ECM, and ignition coil grounds.



 

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Normal voltage drift is 13.2 to 13.8 volts according to the scangage under load. Now it sits at a constant 14.4v under load.
Please explain this to me in layman's terms how this affects me?
Also where would I get these replacements that you installed? I'm guessing I need to pull the battery before making the swap.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Please explain this to me in layman's terms how this affects me?
Also where would I get these replacements that you installed? I'm guessing I need to pull the battery before making the swap.

Less resistance in electrical system, when it comes to most grounds, equates to electrical components working more efficiently. In turn, things like headlamps become brighter, and power windows more faster. In the Audio world, you get less radio noise, harder hitting bass, and louder perceived volumes. This kind of upgrade is common with whats called Big 3 Upgrades. Big 3 upgrade is a bit different, since you would be adding another cable to your alternator, but that is not discussed in this thread as its more involved.

You do not need to disconnect the battery to change the engine and transmission grounds. If you decided to change the battery ground, then you would have to disconnect the battery.

What you need is a ratchet with a 10mm and 12mm socket, and an open end/ratchet end 10mm wrench. You also going to need the 3/8 diameter hole ring terminals, the solder, a crimper/hammer/vice, appropriate sized heat shrink, sand paper or steel brush and of coarse the cable. I also recommend a mutli-meter, and know how to use one to check ohms and continuity. I chose to go with some 0/1 gauge cable which i have about 15 feet laying around. If you have never made ground cables, i recommend watching some youtube video's on how to do it.
 

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I noticed i missed 2 important pictures. Both have to do with the battery ground. 1st picture is a cropped photo showing the battery ground, the 2nd picture is the chassis battery ground location (red bolt), and just below it you will see the ECM, and ignition coil grounds.



Where was this last pictures location? Perfect place to spray Fluid Film and seal those grounds up.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Where was this last pictures location? Perfect place to spray Fluid Film and seal those grounds up.
Just below the battery ground, on the side of the ECM. Im going to remove them and remove the paint under it first, before sealing them. Although i've been contemplating moving those ignition coil grounds closer to the coils.
 

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have you measured ground potential before and after your mods ? Wondering if its measurable.

Just below the battery ground, on the side of the ECM. Im going to remove them and remove the paint under it first, before sealing them. Although i've been contemplating moving those ignition coil grounds closer to the coils.
 
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