Dead Battery / Low Voltage On Gauge


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swr1977
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Dead Battery / Low Voltage On Gauge

Post by swr1977 » Thu Jun 28, 2018 8:02 pm



I think have some sort of a charging problem as when I got home from a 40-50 mile ride today my battery was dead... I knew something was wrong when my volt gauge was reading 8-10 volts most of the way home. I have noticed the voltage gauge reading low on a few rides before but never down in the red where it was today!

Is there anyway to check the rectifier? or the voltage regulators? I think there are two regulators on the GL1000 a 12 volt mounted next to my electronic ignition module and a 7 volt mounted with the temp/fuel/volt gauges. Are there any others and are there a way to test them?

Also I was thinking about checking the three yellow wires coming from the back of the motor going into the rectifier. Do these come from the stator? Is there any way to check them with a volt meter perhaps while the bike is running? If so how and what / how much voltage should I get from each?

See pictures! ... none of these were taken today... I did some work on the bike this last winter... I had to remove the engine to fix a slipping starter clutch and the three yellow wires were cut and then spliced back together with quick discos!

Any suggestion on where to get these parts as I would like to have some spares and they are not available from most parts web-sites or dealers!

Any help on how to solve this would be greatly appreciated!
Attachments

I think this is the rectifier... I've had to fix burnt wire here before!  Is there any way to test it?
I think this is the rectifier... I've had to fix burnt wire here before! Is there any way to test it?


Yellow wires coming from back of motor ... Is there any way to test them?
Yellow wires coming from back of motor ... Is there any way to test them?


7 volt regulator ... Is there any way to test it?
7 volt regulator ... Is there any way to test it?


12 volt regulator  ... Is there any way to test it?
12 volt regulator ... Is there any way to test it?



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WingAdmin
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Re: Dead Battery / Low Voltage On Gauge

Post by WingAdmin » Fri Jun 29, 2018 7:48 am

Make sure the disconnects you put on the yellow wires are CLEAN - any contamination in there will generate heat, which will cause more oxidation, more resistance, more heat, until it melts.

First thing to check is whether or not the stator is putting out enough power.

Disconnect the three yellow wires, switch your meter to AC, not DC.

Start the bike up and have an assistant hold the RPM at a steady speed, say 2,000 rpm.

Measure across each pair of yellow wires, one probe on each yellow wire - first 1-2, then 2-3, then 3-1. Be very careful, as there are potentially LETHAL voltages on those yellow wires when the engine is running. Do not touch the wires with your fingers! You should see very similar voltages from each pair, and they should be no less than 48 VAC.

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swr1977
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Re: Dead Battery / Low Voltage On Gauge

Post by swr1977 » Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:58 am

I think I found the problem! I think rather then using the quick disconnects I'll switch back to what the PO used (butt connectors)

WingAdmin... I will run your test after I get this fixed just to make sure the stator is working correctly.
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For Some there's THERAPY, for the Rest of Us There are MOTORCYCLES

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Re: Dead Battery / Low Voltage On Gauge

Post by WingAdmin » Sat Jun 30, 2018 1:45 pm

swr1977 wrote:
Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:58 am
I think I found the problem! I think rather then using the quick disconnects I'll switch back to what the PO used (butt connectors)

WingAdmin... I will run your test after I get this fixed just to make sure the stator is working correctly.
Do not use butt connectors on a bike!!! Those are meant for house wiring, primarily for solid conductors. They're intended to be used on wiring that does not move, heat up, is not subject to vibration...you get the idea. They're about the worst thing you can use on a bike, as they loosen over time, are open to the air, allow corrosion from oxidation...basically don't use them.

The absolute best way to fix this and know that you're not going to have to deal with it again is to SOLDER the wires together, and cover them with heat shrink tubing. They will never fail again after that.

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swr1977
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Re: Dead Battery / Low Voltage On Gauge

Post by swr1977 » Fri Jul 06, 2018 2:06 am

WingAdmin wrote:
Fri Jun 29, 2018 7:48 am
Make sure the disconnects you put on the yellow wires are CLEAN - any contamination in there will generate heat, which will cause more oxidation, more resistance, more heat, until it melts.
First thing to check is whether or not the stator is putting out enough power.
Disconnect the three yellow wires, switch your meter to AC, not DC.
Start the bike up and have an assistant hold the RPM at a steady speed, say 2,000 rpm.
Measure across each pair of yellow wires, one probe on each yellow wire - first 1-2, then 2-3, then 3-1. Be very careful, as there are potentially LETHAL voltages on those yellow wires when the engine is running. Do not touch the wires with your fingers! You should see very similar voltages from each pair, and they should be no less than 48 VAC.

Testing of the yellow wires done... using my throttle lock set RPM at 2,000 rpm I only achieved a voltage of 41-43 volts on each pair... but when I ran the voltage up to 3,000 rpm and retested each pair I got 47-49 volts.

Is that OK?

WingAdmin wrote:
Sat Jun 30, 2018 1:45 pm
swr1977 wrote:
Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:58 am
I think I found the problem! I think rather then using the quick disconnects I'll switch back to what the PO used (butt connectors)
Do not use butt connectors on a bike!!! Those are meant for house wiring, primarily for solid conductors. They're intended to be used on wiring that does not move, heat up, is not subject to vibration...you get the idea. They're about the worst thing you can use on a bike, as they loosen over time, are open to the air, allow corrosion from oxidation...basically don't use them.

The absolute best way to fix this and know that you're not going to have to deal with it again is to SOLDER the wires together, and cover them with heat shrink tubing. They will never fail again after that.
After running the test I soldered the wires as you suggested. I even found some yellow wire same gauge and lengthened each wire by 5-6 inches because of having to cut out bad wire it was a bit short. (See Pictures)

Is there any way to test the rectifier ? A few of the connectors on it are not looking so good but none are melted like the yellow wires were!

And is there any way to test the 7 and 12 volt regulators ?

I have ordered a used rectifier and used 12 volt regulator from eBay for $25. By the looks of pictures in the listings they are in better shape then what I have!

After I finished putting everything back together I tested the voltage on my battery from the trickle charger leads ... 13.4 volts before a short 15-20mile ride... when I got home it was down to 12.7 volts! Is this OK or Does this mean it's not the battery is not being charged? Keep in mind I had just charged the battery with the trickle charger (Battery Tender) while doing the repair!
Attachments

Yellow wires just spliced, soldered, and heat shrinked!
Yellow wires just spliced, soldered, and heat shrinked!


Yellow wires covered with wire protector
Yellow wires covered with wire protector


A few connectors on rectifier on poor shape!  Any way to test it?
A few connectors on rectifier on poor shape! Any way to test it?


7 volt regulator ... Is there any way to test it?
7 volt regulator ... Is there any way to test it?


12 volt regulator ... Is there any way to test it?
12 volt regulator ... Is there any way to test it?

For Some there's THERAPY, for the Rest of Us There are MOTORCYCLES

User avatar
WingAdmin
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Posts: 19632
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:16 pm
Location: Strongsville, OH
Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (wife's!)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer

Re: Dead Battery / Low Voltage On Gauge

Post by WingAdmin » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:03 am

swr1977 wrote:
Fri Jul 06, 2018 2:06 am
Testing of the yellow wires done... using my throttle lock set RPM at 2,000 rpm I only achieved a voltage of 41-43 volts on each pair... but when I ran the voltage up to 3,000 rpm and retested each pair I got 47-49 volts.

Is that OK?
That's great. You're well in range of what you should be, and all three pairs are showing very similar, so that's exactly what you want to see.
swr1977 wrote:
Fri Jul 06, 2018 2:06 am
After running the test I soldered the wires as you suggested. I even found some yellow wire same gauge and lengthened each wire by 5-6 inches because of having to cut out bad wire it was a bit short. (See Pictures)

Is there any way to test the rectifier ? A few of the connectors on it are not looking so good but none are melted like the yellow wires were!

And is there any way to test the 7 and 12 volt regulators ?

I have ordered a used rectifier and used 12 volt regulator from eBay for $25. By the looks of pictures in the listings they are in better shape then what I have!
The rectifier and voltage regulators basically work or they don't. Sometimes they will become intermittent before they fail entirely, but rarely do you see one that works partially. Measure voltage at the battery when the engine is running at 3,000 RPM. If you're over 13.5 volts and under 15 volts, then your regulator is working. A rectifier is just a bunch of diodes - it either works or it doesn't. As for the 7 volt regulator, again, they either work or they don't. The failure mode for the 7 volt regulator is either putting out 0 volts, or allowing the full 12 volts to appear at the output. Measure the output against ground, if you see 7 volts there, then you're good.
swr1977 wrote:
Fri Jul 06, 2018 2:06 am
After I finished putting everything back together I tested the voltage on my battery from the trickle charger leads ... 13.4 volts before a short 15-20mile ride... when I got home it was down to 12.7 volts! Is this OK or Does this mean it's not the battery is not being charged? Keep in mind I had just charged the battery with the trickle charger (Battery Tender) while doing the repair!
When you first took it off the trickle charger, you were likely measuring the remnants of a surface charge, which is why you were seeing 13.4 volts. Let it sit for an hour or two and try again, and you'd likely see a more realistic voltage. 12.7 volts is perfectly acceptable, fully charged is 12.6 volts and above.



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