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View Full Version : ESD (ElectroStatic Discharge) ? Do you have this problem?


ausie
02-05-2007, 07:03 AM
:( This is something I would expect only to occur in the dry cold months of winter but for some reason I have it all year round. I am sure most of you know what ESD (electrostatic discharge) is. If you don't, you have never seen a lightning storm. ESD is basically an excess of stored electrical engergy finding a discharge path. Since the tires insulate your vehicle, the metal body of the vehicle can hold a very high electrical charge (in excess of 20,000 volts). Typcially most vehicles do not store much energy potential and do not pose a threat when it is time to fuel up the vehicle. However, in my case, not only is it painful to the fingers, my car builds up a charge high enough to be a concern when getting gas. I have now gotten into the habit of touching the car first with one hand followed by touching the gas pump frame (or anything close by) with the other to discharge the vehicle before I open up the fuel cap and or reach for the pump handle:spoke:. Risk of ESD is much higher in colder dry climates but I also have the same issue in the summer too but not as severe since the humidity helps to dissipate the electrical charge. Does any body else have a similar issue with their 03/04 Cobra? I did not have this issue with the 2001 Cobra, or any other vehicle I have owned. I could always install grounding straps but that would look tacky, as well as unnecessary.

blk04cobra1
02-05-2007, 10:37 AM
It's funny you mention this...ive had this problem ever since I got the vehicle...matter of fact it seems very prevalant in most of the cobra's that come through the shop...more annoying than anything...

ausie
02-14-2007, 05:30 AM
Perhaps they should have called the Lightning instead but that name was already taken. I do not recall the 01 to be this shocking so I am thinking it may be related to the blower creating the high energy potential. Either that or it is related to the use of composit materials in some of the body parts.

sssvtcobra
02-28-2007, 02:58 PM
I have the same problem with my '04 and did have it with the '01 also. I think it's the seats to be honest. The insert material is pretty much the same material as our new furniture, and anytime I get up from the furniture the first thing I touch shocks me. My wife and I joke and say when we give a eachother a kiss it's all fireworks. But when I get out of the car and close the door the door shocks me, as well as my wife.

Just thought I'd drop off my thoughts

tazzracing1
02-28-2007, 05:44 PM
I have not had this problem with my 03 but did have a sever problem with a 94 cavalier I had.

ausie
03-01-2007, 05:58 AM
I have the same problem with my '04 and did have it with the '01 also. I think it's the seats to be honest. The insert material is pretty much the same material as our new furniture, and anytime I get up from the furniture the first thing I touch shocks me. My wife and I joke and say when we give a eachother a kiss it's all fireworks. But when I get out of the car and close the door the door shocks me, as well as my wife.

Just thought I'd drop off my thoughts
I think you hit the nail on the head that it may be the seats. I do not recall ever getting zapped from outside the car when it is running (during warm up). Only when getting out of the car once the engine has been started.

ausie
03-01-2007, 06:15 AM
I have not had this problem with my 03 but did have a sever problem with a 94 cavalier I had.
Do you have the Alcantra and leather seats or are they all leather? I do recall that some of the Cobra's may not have the same seats (10th anniversary models have all leather seats) and I do recall seeing a yellow Cobra that had all leather seats in black as well. I am thinking it may be related to the Alcantra inserts in the stock seats. I can touch any interior part and not have an issue, but if I can touch an exterior part (window down) I will get zapped. Give that a try the next time you fire up the Cobra.

pdogkilr
03-04-2007, 12:53 PM
I have the 10th Anniversary Edition with factory seating. Same problem. I touch the MGW gas cap before filling it up - more habit than concern.

But sometimes the electric pop lets my finger know it has been somewhere it was not wanted ! :rotf:

flynfink
03-06-2007, 09:06 AM
Hey guys, it's your tires.. Yup, different brands and type are worse than others.. I always smack a door with my palm when I get in.

ausie
03-07-2007, 06:46 AM
I do not think it is the tires...... The rubber will always be a good insulator so that will not make a difference.

The issue I would suspect with most that have it is when getting out of the car only after the engine has been running or is running.

Getting into the car does not pose an issue when the engine is running or off.

flynfink
03-07-2007, 07:05 AM
OK, don't beleive me. Change brands of tires and see. :D

One of the auotmotive magazines did some research and testing years ago. DIfferent rubber compounds, type of cords, all affected ESD.

Yes the rubber is an insulator, The car (tires, etc.) generate static and have no where to discharge, except you..

sssvtcobra
03-07-2007, 12:45 PM
I don't think it's the tires either. We have toyo tires on both of our cars, and only my car is the one that shocks us. And it's never getting into the car, but getting out. I haven't payed much attention to whether or not the car has been running or not.

Downtheroad
03-08-2007, 08:31 AM
Try to spray static guard for cloths on carpet and cloth seats, also the hood blanket is one big ESD shield and should be grounded with a strap by pass side hood hinge but this is more for radio interference.

SVTCobraGirl
03-09-2007, 12:26 AM
ours does this also.. its annoying and hurts like a mofo most of the time!! I noticed my fathers cougar does it too.. Is it the suade in the seats that cause it or what?? Never did it on my other stangs.

ausie
03-09-2007, 06:55 AM
OK, don't beleive me. Change brands of tires and see. :D

One of the auotmotive magazines did some research and testing years ago. DIfferent rubber compounds, type of cords, all affected ESD.

Yes the rubber is an insulator, The car (tires, etc.) generate static and have no where to discharge, except you..
One reason that I do not buy into the tire issue, is that I only get zapped when sitting inside the car and I touch an outside surface (either my hand touching the door, or my leg getting close to the kick panel). I should be at the same electrical potential of the vehicle. The other issue is that I have three different brands of tires mounted on three different rims. 1 set of snow tires (dunlop) on the 8x17 2001 Cobra wheels, 1 set of firestone's on the 9x17 10th anniv. wheels, and 1 set of Toyo T1-R's on the 10x18 and 8.5x18 BBS wheels. All three types of tires have a different rubber compound and different construction. If it was the tires, I would get zapped when standing on the ground and touching the vehicle. The main issue is the internal insulation between the body and interior of the vehicle. That is my theory anyway..... :cool: