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  #1  
Old 02-20-2012, 11:13 AM
spankyway spankyway is offline
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I'm having triouble keeping my battery charged

I have a 84 GW that has anew starter, good alternator, and a new battery about two weeks old. My alternator puts out about 13 VDC at idle. We replaced the battery two weeks ago because the local parts store checked it and said it was bad. The Jeep did good for a couple weeks. Now this morning my wife said it started at home but when she got to her destination about 12 miles away it wouldn't start. Fortunately my wife keeps a jump box with her and she's not afraid to get out and jump it off. But she is getting a little frustrated with it and I'm not sure what the problem is. Has anyone else had a similar problem? If so what did you find was the problem?
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Old 02-20-2012, 11:20 AM
spankyway spankyway is offline
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I also cleaned all the grounds and the battery terminals a couple weeks ago. When she puts the jump box on the battery the Jeep fires right strong. All this leads me to believe the battery is dying and not getting charged by the alternator, even though it puts out decent voltage.
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  #3  
Old 02-20-2012, 11:32 AM
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The Colonel The Colonel is offline
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Just because your alternator is putting out decent voltage doesn't mean it's putting out any decent amperage.

Have you tested the charging system with a load tester?
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Old 02-20-2012, 11:34 AM
spankyway spankyway is offline
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I have not checked it using a load tester. I guess I need to take it somewhere and have it checked by a professional?
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  #5  
Old 02-20-2012, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spankyway
I have not checked it using a load tester. I guess I need to take it somewhere and have it checked by a professional?

Most local parts stores will check it for free.
Have it tested an let us know.
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Old 02-20-2012, 11:42 AM
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Rich88 Rich88 is offline
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The two things you didn't list were the least expensive items: a new starter relay and starter cable. I'd do these as well for a clean sweep.

Corroded connections at the starter relay or contacts within it can cause the problem.
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  #7  
Old 02-20-2012, 11:57 AM
spankyway spankyway is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich88
The two things you didn't list were the least expensive items: a new starter relay and starter cable. I'd do these as well for a clean sweep.

Corroded connections at the starter relay or contacts within it can cause the problem.

The starter relay/solenoid is not to old, maybe 6 months to a year. I haven't messed with the cable. I do know that before I replaced the battery the positive terminal would corrode very quickly. I would clean it off one weekend and the next weekend I would have to clean it again. It wasn't terrible but I figure and cauliflower growing on the battery can't be good.
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  #8  
Old 02-20-2012, 12:18 PM
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serehill serehill is offline
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In addition

Make sure the belt is tight if you can turn the alternator (with the motor not running) & make the belt slip by hand then it's not. Also clean the connections (all of them) on the alternator plug & make sure they are making good connections. Clean all cable grounds & make sure they are all intact to the body & motor. Corrosion on the positive terminal cable with the bad battery could have damaged it also.
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If you can't make it better why waste your time. No use repeating the orignal mistakes. I'm to old to push it that's why.
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  #9  
Old 02-20-2012, 01:45 PM
joe joe is offline
 
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Sounds to me you're overcharging and cooking the battery. It just took two weeks to kill the new battery. It'll take a charge but now won't hold it after you ruined it by overcharging.
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Old 02-20-2012, 06:18 PM
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serehill serehill is offline
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good question

I assumed the opposite that it wasn't charging. The battery depleated from a new charged one.
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Edlebrock performer intake
Holley 4180
Msd total multi spark.
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If you can't make it better why waste your time. No use repeating the orignal mistakes. I'm to old to push it that's why.
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  #11  
Old 02-20-2012, 06:21 PM
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Poley Poley is offline
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I too have been having charging problems on my Waggy/Buggy but I think my system is hooked up wrong some where. I want to rewire it from scratch.
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  #12  
Old 02-20-2012, 06:46 PM
spankyway spankyway is offline
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When I got home my son had put the charger on the battery and it was charging at a full 6 amps. I checked the belt and it was a little loose so I tightened it up. The charger was on for about 1 hour and still charging at 6 amps but when I hit the key it fired right up like a new hot battery was installed. I'm not sure what's going on.
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  #13  
Old 02-20-2012, 06:47 PM
spankyway spankyway is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe
Sounds to me you're overcharging and cooking the battery. It just took two weeks to kill the new battery. It'll take a charge but now won't hold it after you ruined it by overcharging.


Ooo, why sush a nasty comment?
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  #14  
Old 02-23-2012, 04:07 AM
JeepWrencher JeepWrencher is offline
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I had the same problem after I did the CS-144 upgrade but it turns out it was just user error. I hadn't tightened the belts enough and the alternator was slipping at speed.

I know somone said to make sure you can't make the belt slip by hand but that still isn't good enough. If you have it "medium" tight it will have enough traction to spin the alternator at idle and show that everything functions properly on both voltage and amperage tests. However, once you get to highway speeds or you engage your air conditioning unit the belts can slip and fail to sping the alternator fast enough to keep up with demand and cause a slow drain on the batt.

This could be why it took 2 weeks to kill your battery. Everytime you were idle the alt would play catch up and pump amps back into the system. My advise on belt tension is that you should get the Alternator/AC belts almost as tight as you possibly can. The alternator is in an awkward position and doesn't have a handy tensioning location like the PS pump does so it's hard to over tighten.
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  #15  
Old 02-23-2012, 08:16 AM
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serehill serehill is offline
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yep that could be it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by spankyway
When I got home my son had put the charger on the battery and it was charging at a full 6 amps. I checked the belt and it was a little loose so I tightened it up. The charger was on for about 1 hour and still charging at 6 amps but when I hit the key it fired right up like a new hot battery was installed. I'm not sure what's going on.

If you can turn the alternator under the belt & make it slip it won't charge. You may have fixed it. Fingers crossed
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360 ci 727 with
Comp cams 270 h
NP208
Edlebrock performer intake
Holley 4180
Msd total multi spark.
4" rusty's springs
Member, FSJ Prissy Restoration Association

If you can't make it better why waste your time. No use repeating the orignal mistakes. I'm to old to push it that's why.
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  #16  
Old 02-23-2012, 08:57 AM
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fsj1979 fsj1979 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe
Sounds to me you're overcharging and cooking the battery. It just took two weeks to kill the new battery. It'll take a charge but now won't hold it after you ruined it by overcharging.
Overcharging?......with 13 volts? NOT likely. Every vehicle I own puts out between 13.8-14.3 volts. A good battery will hold a steady 12.5 with no charge at all. A flat 13 volts is really a very poor charge. I suspect the voltage regulator in the alt. is bad. At certain rpm's you may not be getting a charge at all.
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Last edited by fsj1979 : 02-23-2012 at 09:24 AM.
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  #17  
Old 03-01-2012, 10:47 AM
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Carnuck Carnuck is offline
 
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13vdc isn't enough to fully charge the battery. First thing I would do is see if it's the wiring between the alt and battery causing the problem (very often the ammeter is the culprit) by putting a jumper lead from the alt main terminal to the battery + and recheck voltage.
How old are the belts? They can be tight but worn too skinny to grab the sides of the grooves (which is why serpentine belt system is superior). They can actually drop down the groove till the bottom of the belt slides on the pulley.
Is there a ground wire from the battery negative to the body? Without that, the headlights will draw away power from the alt's field plus the lights, heater fan, and wipers and it's even worse. Everything works slower, harder and heats up till they fail.
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  #18  
Old 03-01-2012, 07:49 PM
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I agree, 13v is too low. Should be 14.5
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  #19  
Old 03-01-2012, 08:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdcptman
I agree, 13v is too low. Should be 14.5

14.5V???? Good luck finding that on one of these rigs....in stock form anyway.
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Old 03-02-2012, 11:56 AM
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Mine ran between 13.9 and 14.5 after I bypassed the ammeter and added a fresh battery to body ground.
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