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Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: American Mel ()
Date: November 30, 2017 08:09PM

Okay, I know that this was covered in more than one thread, but I am getting a headache searching through a dozen threads to scrounge out the exact pertinent information that I need.
I am not really up on auto electrical at all.
My headlights get brighter when I raise the engine off of idle, and the dash lights waver (dim-bright-dim-bright-dim-etc.) when driving down the road at night.
Would this be a Alternator issue, or a Voltage Regulator problem?
I stuck a DVM on the battery yesterday when it was idling, and it was reading 15.18 - 15.89.
It was consistent on the 15 volts, but the decimal points were all over the place almost fast than the meter could read the changes.
I revved it up a bit, and it stayed right there in the 15 volt range.
Is that high?
It seems like most threads have said charge should be running around 13.5-14.
Any help or ideas are greatly appreciated as usual!

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WA. state, 1 mile south of the Canadian border,
I am not at the end of the world, but you can see it from here.
'66 Monza Coupe - 4spd, 140 Daily driver beater
'67 Monza Vert. - PG, 140 Daily driver beater

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: Leon ()
Date: November 30, 2017 08:13PM

Over 15 volts is overcharging, voltage regulator is most likely at fault.

Star NC
1965 Monza Coupe, turbocharged 140/4spd, Carter AFB 4bbl, E-flow Crown turbo, water/meth injection, driver
1965 Corsa Coupe, 140/4spd, future project
1966 Monza Coupe, 110/4spd parts car
1966 Monza 'vert, 95/PG parts car
1985 Dodge W350 4dr turbocharged 440/4spd

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: American Mel ()
Date: November 30, 2017 08:23PM

Is there any way to check that to verify it?
Other than what I have done, that is?

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WA. state, 1 mile south of the Canadian border,
I am not at the end of the world, but you can see it from here.
'66 Monza Coupe - 4spd, 140 Daily driver beater
'67 Monza Vert. - PG, 140 Daily driver beater

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: November 30, 2017 08:24PM

The first question I have is always, is the meter calibrated? No, not send it away for NIST calibration, just what is the non engine running voltage read at the battery? If it is 12.6 or so the meter is calibrated enough for your use. If off, then add/subtract accordingly.

15 is at the top of what ones needs to charge a battery. If over 15, suspect VR, or undercharged battery.

It is normal for light to brighten when reving engine above idle. Wavering could mean VR is not regulating fast enough.

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: American Mel ()
Date: November 30, 2017 08:30PM

I am not sure if the headlights also waver, from behind them they appear steady, but I am unsure what the oncoming cars see.
I notice the dash lights doing the waver though.
They do get considerably brighter when coming off idle though that is for sure.

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WA. state, 1 mile south of the Canadian border,
I am not at the end of the world, but you can see it from here.
'66 Monza Coupe - 4spd, 140 Daily driver beater
'67 Monza Vert. - PG, 140 Daily driver beater

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: RobertC ()
Date: November 30, 2017 08:41PM

Headlights wavering should be noticeable.

When I had headlights wavering / flickeringon another (old) vehicle, it was a bad diode in the alternator.

It did not seem to affect charging, drove the vehicle for a month or two (lazy)before finally getting a new alternator.

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: Chilly Willy ()
Date: December 01, 2017 05:45AM

At 15 volts the dash lights shouldn’t ever be dim. I’d check the grounds.check all alternator and regulator connections. Your regulator might be adjustable.




The Corvair, Keeping Nader Notorious winking smiley


Will
Northern California

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: American Mel ()
Date: December 01, 2017 08:13AM

Thanks guys.
I will look into this deeper over the week-end.

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WA. state, 1 mile south of the Canadian border,
I am not at the end of the world, but you can see it from here.
'66 Monza Coupe - 4spd, 140 Daily driver beater
'67 Monza Vert. - PG, 140 Daily driver beater

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: bwells ()
Date: December 01, 2017 09:50AM

Headlights usually have enough thermal mass to not flicker unless something is very wrong. I have seen bad original type(relays)regulators cause interior light flickering.

Bill Wells
North Texas Corvair Assoc.
www.northtexascorvair.org
61 Ramp
65 Corsa

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: vairjunkie ()
Date: December 01, 2017 12:14PM

The stock VR has an adjusting screw under the cover. The procedures for adjusting it are in the shop manual. You might want to try that first.
Eric



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/01/2017 12:16PM by vairjunkie.

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Re: Charging output? eye rolling smiley
Posted by: CoCoCo ()
Date: December 01, 2017 11:18PM

Not sure if this is a common issue, but since general wiring under the hood issues are common, before I'd try to adjust the regulator I would make certain that all wires associated with the regulator were in good shape and not causing a voltage drop that might fool the regulator into thinking that the battery was low, therefore causing the alternator to overcompensate.

But that alone would nor normally explain the flickering.

Paul

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