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Re: How to tell if it's charging?

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Paul in Edmonton

11-19-2012 08:16:58

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Well, I guess "definitely" is a strong word, but...

1. The ammeter is reading a small discharge when running (as I said above, I don't trust it until I can verify it, but that doesn't mean it's not right).

2. An analog voltmeter (the one on my battery load tester) reads the same voltage with it running as with it off. I actually watched it as I switched the engine off--the needle didn't even twitch off its reading of just over 6V.

3. When I press the load button on the load tester with the engine running, the needle drops the same amount as it does with the engine off.

4. My clamp-on ammeter, clamped over one of the big wires to the battery, reads around 1.5 amps when running, with the same direction as it reads when I'm cranking the starter (i.e. it's draining, not charging). I don't trust that thing to within 0.5 amps even when it's not affected by engine electrical noise (it's digital), but I should note that while its voltage reading is all over the map when the engine is running (hence the analog meter used in 2 &3 above), its clamp-on current reading is stable--it doesn't seem to have noise issues when measuring current with the clamp.

Maybe not definite, but as close as I can get based on the advice posted earlier in this thread.

I'll do the jumper thing (Bat-Arm as on your diagram) and see if that changes anything. (I'll also double check belt tension--it occurs to me that I didn't do a visual check that the generator was actually turning with the engine...)


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