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Battery connected all idiot lights on

When I connect the battery cables all of the idiot lights come on but the key is not even in the ignition. help !

Please provide year, make, model of car.

93 Geo Metro 3 cyl 5sp

There’s a pretty good chance that the problem is related to the ignition switch in one way or another. Any chance that you managed to remove the key with the ignition in the run position? Some cars allow that. If not, try inserting the key and turning counterclockwise.

I put in another ignition switch already without any change.

Somehow power is bypassing the ignition switch. A faulty relay be be causing the trouble. By disconnecting connections you may be able to track the trouble down. Getting a wiring diagram for the car would be a big help to aid you in locating the trouble. A test light probe would be helpful also so you can verify where power is getting to.

You didn’t, by chance, reverse the polarity of the cables when you were messing with the battery did you?? Even for just a moment?

Why did you disconnect the battery?

I just took off the negative (black) cable.

I have the factory service manual (FSM) , voltmeter, and a test light.

I put in another ignition switch already without any change.

OK. Well then, electricity is apparently getting around the ignition switch somehow. You’ll have to look at a wiring diagram (Try a Haynes manual) to be sure, but I suspect you will find that about the only place that can happen if the headlights are off and the doors/trunk lid/etc are closed is at the fuse boxes or in the wiring harnesses. Maybe pulling and reinserting all the fuses you can find and seeing which turn the idiot lights off will provide some insight.

If you have made any wiring modifications to install an after market radio or other device, you might want to check the wiring.

I just had another thought about this trouble. Since the warning lights are tested through the alternator circuit I suspect the trouble may be due to a problem within the alternator. By removing the connection to the back side of the alternator you should be able to turn out the lights. If the lights go out when you do that you should be able to solve the trouble by replacing the alternator.

Disconnecting the power cable from the alternator must have worked since Robert hasn’t come back saying it didn’t work. Way to go Cougar!

Thanks for attaboy Hellokit. I suspect that will fix him up but we may never know for sure.

I have not tried the solution yet due to my illness. I will post immediately the results after I attempt them !

Sorry to hear about your illness, Robert. Get well soonest.
And, let us know the results on the car.