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Date Posted: Tue January 28, 2014 12:12:15PM
Author: SgtSlag
Subject: Re: Alternator?
In reply to: Donald Stanley 's message, "Re: Alternator?" on Tue January 28, 2014 12:11:14AM

Get yourself a DVM (Digital Volt Meter) from Harbor Freight, or another DIY store (Menards, Lowe's, Home Depot), for $10-$15. Then measure the voltage across the battery, engine off: should be 12.5-12.9 Volts, which indicates the battery is good.

Next, start the bike, and measure the voltage across the battery at 2,500-3,000 RPM: it should read 13.5+ Volts, which indicates the alternator is charging the system. This also indicates the entire charging system (rectifier/regulator, battery, and alternator) are working properly. If the voltage reads less than 13.5 Volts, your charging system is failing -- pull out the manual, and look up the troubleshooting techniques for the charging system. Follow the steps carefully, to determine the source of the problem: rectifier/regulator, battery (known good if you measured a good, resting voltage of 12.5-12.9 Volts), and the alternator (pumps out three-phase Alternating Current, not as easy to test as the battery is). Cheers!

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