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Battery/Alternator problem/advice, please help! 

 

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 Post subject: Battery/Alternator problem/advice, please help!
Posted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:19 pm 
Fordmods Newbie
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Age: 42

Posts: 4

Joined: 29th Sep 2011

Ride: 1994 XG Panel Van

Location: Perth
WA, Australia

Hi all, I've got a bit of a starting/charging problem with my XG panelvan and it's driving me nuts, especially because I'm due to go away camping in a week but it'll be no go if I can't get the van sorted. Thought if I post up what's happening someone in the know might be able to point out what might possibly be wrong?

I have a work car now and the van doesn't get used much so when I go to use it on the weekend it's battery is often flat and needs a jump start. I just put it down to not being used enough. However this weekend I needed to use it for a couple of days and once I had jumped it and drove for half an hour, it still wouldn't start after turning it off and then on again. Battery or alternator I thought.

Ok so this is what is currently happening.
Battery is only 8 months old and in good condition as far as I know.
Trickle charged it until it said it was charged
Multimeter across the battery terminals showed approx 13.5 volts with car off
With car idling the multimeter shows about 14.5 volts constant, and also shows the same with positive probe on the alternator terminal (and the negative still on the battery). Dash gauge also shows 14.5 volts while idling. Volts go up to about 15.5 when rpm @ 1500/2000.
So with a fresh charge the car will crank over and fire, and I can let it idle for 20 minutes, then when I switch it off and try to start again, it will just fire, but if I turn it off again and try to restart it doesn't fire and just makes the clicking sound.

I'm no expert on auto electrics but I thought if the multimeter showed 14.5 odd volts while idling then the alternator was ok? Anyone have any ideas??

Thanks very much in advance
Matt
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 Post subject: Re: Battery/Alternator problem/advice, please help!
Posted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:38 pm 
Oompa Loompa
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Age: 37

Posts: 33

Joined: 24th Feb 2009

Ride: au ute, fg xr6 sedan

Location: Goondiwindi
QLD, Australia

One of the first things to do is pull off all electrical contact points I.E all earths mainly. Then check your cranking voltage. You could have a dead cell in the battery which you will only see while cranking. The cold brings the worst out in batteries.
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 Post subject: Re: Battery/Alternator problem/advice, please help!
Posted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:13 pm 
Fordmods Newbie
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Age: 42

Posts: 4

Joined: 29th Sep 2011

Ride: 1994 XG Panel Van

Location: Perth
WA, Australia

Ok so get rid of all the other leads going to the negative terminal except for the main negative lead?

What should the cranking voltage be and when should I be testing it? (before/during/after trying the key)
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 Post subject: Re: Battery/Alternator problem/advice, please help!
Posted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:22 pm 
Oompa Loompa
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Age: 37

Posts: 33

Joined: 24th Feb 2009

Ride: au ute, fg xr6 sedan

Location: Goondiwindi
QLD, Australia

just clean all contact points corrosion can build up. Unsure of correct voltage but if drops below 8 then battery is problem.
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 Post subject: Re: Battery/Alternator problem/advice, please help!
Posted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 10:05 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 66

Posts: 2548

Joined: 18th Mar 2006

Ride: EF-XR8chaser

Location: wollongong
NSW, Australia

go to a auto electrican,test battery under load,will tell in 3min, if the batterys ok,check the alterator out put and regulator.a battery will stand for weeks,but your smart lock and flashing dash light will use power,other wise pull a cable off the battery when your finished using the car.

 

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R.I.P HANS HARTMAN

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 Post subject: Re: Battery/Alternator problem/advice, please help!
Posted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:57 pm 
Smokin em up
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Posts: 258

Joined: 30th Dec 2007

Location: cairns
QLD, Australia

If it is a calcium battery then you will have to use a calcium battery charger to charge it up.Driving around or letting it idle will do almost nothing to charge it up.If you are using a normal battery charger that won't work either because calcium batteries have to be reconditioned or anti-sulphated to get all the crap off the cells and only a calcium battery charger will do this.Or your battery is stuffed from not being charged up and used .If it is a calcium battery and you don't use the vehicle all the time then you might want to think about using a charge and maintain charger.1 that stays hooked up all the time and keeps the battery topped up all the time.Hope this helps Kevman.
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 Post subject: Re: Battery/Alternator problem/advice, please help!
Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 2:56 am 
Fordmods Newbie
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Age: 42

Posts: 4

Joined: 29th Sep 2011

Ride: 1994 XG Panel Van

Location: Perth
WA, Australia

thx for the info, pretty sure it's just your average garden variety car battery. Did some other tests (ie: swapped in another battery from one of my other cars :wink: ) and she's all sweet. Luckily I kept the receipt for the Century Battery warranty! Hopefully be able to get a replacement one. Thanks again for the help!
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