how do i check my battery with a multimeter


Technical information and Q&A applicable to all years and models of Goldwings
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halcombrick
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Location: Lafollette, tennessee
Motorcycle: 1982 GL1100 Interstate

how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby halcombrick » Mon Dec 29, 2014 6:27 pm



I went and got a cheap ge multimeter how can I check And see if my battery is anygood


Rick, 82 GL1100 Interstate

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Aussie81Interstate
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Motorcycle: 1982 CX500 Turbo (restoration project)
1981 GL1100 Interstate (sold)
1988 GL1500

Re: how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby Aussie81Interstate » Mon Dec 29, 2014 6:59 pm

Easiest way for you would be to check out this link.





the section you want is at about the 1 minute mark.

Normally put either lead of your MM on the battery terminals - the right way around will show a positive charge
the wrong way around would show a negative charge.

The battery if any good - is subject to a few things.

If the battery is old and has been sitting with no fluid in it is probably toast.
If it has some fluid in it and not too old - possibly toast - possibly recoverable
If it has been used and just let sit for a short time (a few months) probably would recover from a recharge.

I'll give you another link




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halcombrick
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Re: how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby halcombrick » Mon Dec 29, 2014 9:48 pm

I put my multimeter on dcv and put the setting on 10v and connected my leads and it pegged my needle so im guessing the battery is good am I right?
Rick, 82 GL1100 Interstate

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Aussie81Interstate
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Motorcycle: 1982 CX500 Turbo (restoration project)
1981 GL1100 Interstate (sold)
1988 GL1500

Re: how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby Aussie81Interstate » Mon Dec 29, 2014 10:05 pm

No,

put the multimeter setting on 20V - it will then read up to 20volts if you have it on 10 it will only show a maximum of 10 volts

try again

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Mh434
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Re: how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby Mh434 » Mon Dec 29, 2014 11:42 pm

Definitely, as Aussie81Interstate says, the meter needs to be set on 12V DC or higher. If the battery's at rest, and the engine's been off for 10-15 minutes or more, a voltage of at least 12.6 or higher should be seen. Less than that, and either the battery is failing or there's a parasitic draw from some electrical component that stays on when the ignition is off.

If the engine is idling, ideally you'd see 13+ volts, but on stock GW alternators this often isn't the case. If the voltage is lower than that at idle, try testing the battery voltage with the engine at 1500 RPM, and again at 2500 RPM. At 1500, you should be seeing at least 13V and at 2500 you're looking for at least 13.8 to 14.5 volts if your battery & alternator are good.

Let us know what you find out....

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halcombrick
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Re: how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby halcombrick » Wed Dec 31, 2014 10:34 am

Thanks guys,l I charged it and checked it my dial is showing near 15v setting the battery is out of the bike, im going to leave it out a day or two and re-check. if its still good I will use a continuity checker to make sure my starter wire hasn't got a break.
Rick, 82 GL1100 Interstate

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ct1500
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Re: how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby ct1500 » Wed Dec 31, 2014 1:41 pm

A battery when removed from a charger will have a "surface charge" and taking voltage readings are meaningless until it is removed. Your 15V shows this.

A surface charge is removed by putting a load on the battery, the easiest way to do this is to put battery back in vehicle temporarily and turn headlight on for 30 seconds or so.
This is what I do
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f1xrupr
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Re: how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby f1xrupr » Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:44 pm

By reading your post, I gathered that you purchased an analog multi meter. That is not the best one for the job. However, it may work after calabration. I believe you will find a thumb dial (knob) on the side of that unit. Check your instructions under calabration. If it's not there, put the selector on the ohms setting, hold the probes touching each other so the needle pegs, and while you are doing that, adjust your thumb dial so the needle is exactly at the right side of the scale (not past, but spot on). Your unit is now calabrated, but must be calabrated again from time to time as the battery weekens. Now, set your meter to 20 volts DC (it must be set at a rating 15 VDC or above to do a complete charging system test). You should now get a reading of about 12.5 volts without engine running and the key off. There is a load test that the mm can not acuritly do, but, if you remove the battery and take it to a auto parts store, they will test it for you. It should have approximately 230 cold cracking amps, or more. Some claim that you can do it with a mm, but I wouldn't advise it, because, if the starter is shorting out, the mm can give you a false reading, and cause you to unessesarly purchase a new battery. Please be advised, there is a stator output test on YouTube that test the starter while it's hooked up-that is incorrect info.....I'll be glad to explain....
My exercise bike is a goldwing.

f1xrupr
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Re: how do i check my battery with a multimeter

Postby f1xrupr » Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:54 pm

Correction...bottom of my last post I wrote; "with the starter hooked up" ....should be " with the stator hooked up" ....Simpson keyboard done that...sorry.


My exercise bike is a goldwing.


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