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Battery not charging

1737 Views 5 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  bikeron
I installed a new Interstate battery in October 2010. (800 Cold cranking amps)
and last month I noticed the brake lights were not working. I also noticed with the headlights on and when I turn on the high beams the headlights go out (This could be just the switch, its probably original)

I start it up at least once/week, sometimes twice. On tuesday, after driving for about 30 minutes, it would not start. The battery should not be dead. I took the battery to the local shop where I bought it, and had it charged for several hours. So, I am thinking there may be problem with the alternator(NAPA part # 66287 - 63 amp) or voltage regulator. I purchased a new voltage regulator(Duralast VR715) from auto-zone and then tested the voltage with a volt meter. The battery reads 12.6 volts and the alternator reads 12.3 volts with the engine running.

Shouldn't the alternator read more than 12 volts??

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Alternator is not charging. Voltage should be 14.0 to 14.4..
What type of voltmeter are you using?
My friend is an electronic tech for NASA and he came over with his volt meter. I think its was just an ordinary volt meter. I am not sure what kind

If the alternator is not charging properly, would the best thing to do is just replace it?
If so, I might as well go with a 100 amp alternator. (I want to add a power stereo amp and possibly power windows) Any brand of alternator that is better than others? Is it just capping off the existing voltage regulator? Do I need to buy a new wiring harness?

I like the Power Master 8002. It has high output current at idle which is what you will need. Fits without modifying anything. You might want something larger though which would require a little more searching and/or modification to the bracket system.

You will need to increase the size of the wire from the alternator to the horn relay too. I did a lot of work on the alternator issue that was documented in this series of posts:

It should be a 3 wire. The external regulator should be bypassed. You need to put a 6 awg wire from the alternator to the horn relay.

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