U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Automotive > Brand-specific forums > Toyota, Lexus, and Scion
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 08-29-2011, 12:27 PM
 
1,309 posts, read 2,887,983 times
Reputation: 941

Advertisements

Just wondering if my voltage regulator is on the blink.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 08-29-2011, 12:32 PM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
4,464 posts, read 9,632,464 times
Reputation: 2819
I would think it's fine, mine idled around 14.4V
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-30-2011, 05:00 AM
 
Location: Earth
4,227 posts, read 20,285,035 times
Reputation: 2209
Sounds ok to me. What's the voltage when the car is shut completely off?

A good surface charge on a well charged battery should be 12.4 VDC. A properly working charging system, when the engine is running, should increase voltage 1-2 volts.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-30-2011, 07:23 AM
 
10,869 posts, read 41,139,178 times
Reputation: 14009
Depends upon the ambient temperature, but 14.6v at idle is a bit high for most applications.

The real concern is twofold:

1) What's the charging voltage at cruise RPM with normal accessories operating?

2) How is the battery life? any signs of throwing out a lot of electrolyte?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-30-2011, 08:00 AM
 
861 posts, read 2,292,772 times
Reputation: 940
Mid 14's is perfectly normal. Todays car have high amp alternators because of all the on board electronics. My Tacoma still reads 14.5 at the idle after 250K miles. Checked it once many years ago at it was in the 14.7-14.8 range. Higher than normal but never hurt anything.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-30-2011, 08:07 AM
 
117 posts, read 551,626 times
Reputation: 95
i'd say its fine too. it certainly has to be higher than 12 to charge the battery.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-31-2011, 05:29 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
13,388 posts, read 42,713,043 times
Reputation: 11465
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunsprit View Post
Depends upon the ambient temperature, but 14.6v at idle is a bit high for most applications.

The real concern is twofold:

1) What's the charging voltage at cruise RPM with normal accessories operating?

2) How is the battery life? any signs of throwing out a lot of electrolyte?
I have to agree with Sunsprit. What I would look for, (just looking at a voltmeter) is if the voltage rises a little from idle and then levels out by the time you hit about 1500 engine RPM. I would wonder what the voltage level is with accessories like headlights on.

Typical max charging voltage is only around 14.7, although some cars that come with sealed batteries tend to run a bit higher.

OP, how are you checking voltage? If it's a meter on the battery terminals, a hand-held meter, how good is it anyway? Is it a Fluke, or a cheapie you bought at Harbor Freight?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-01-2011, 06:33 AM
 
1,309 posts, read 2,887,983 times
Reputation: 941
Quote:
Originally Posted by M3 Mitch View Post
I have to agree with Sunsprit. What I would look for, (just looking at a voltmeter) is if the voltage rises a little from idle and then levels out by the time you hit about 1500 engine RPM. I would wonder what the voltage level is with accessories like headlights on.

Typical max charging voltage is only around 14.7, although some cars that come with sealed batteries tend to run a bit higher.

OP, how are you checking voltage? If it's a meter on the battery terminals, a hand-held meter, how good is it anyway? Is it a Fluke, or a cheapie you bought at Harbor Freight?
I have 14.7 volts at idle, and 12.4 volts with the engine off, with the average of three (pretty consistent) readings taken by jabbing the probes on to the battery posts. As to my digital multimeter, it's a cheapie digital hand-held meter I bought online. Compared to this meter (think Yugo), the Harbor Freight equivalent is a Lamborghini. You could say that it's a Fluke when I get an accurate reading.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-01-2011, 04:31 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
13,388 posts, read 42,713,043 times
Reputation: 11465
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zhang Fei View Post
I have 14.7 volts at idle, and 12.4 volts with the engine off, with the average of three (pretty consistent) readings taken by jabbing the probes on to the battery posts. As to my digital multimeter, it's a cheapie digital hand-held meter I bought online. Compared to this meter (think Yugo), the Harbor Freight equivalent is a Lamborghini. You could say that it's a Fluke when I get an accurate reading.
Well, you don't have to spring for a Fluke meter, but, see if you can compare readings to a known good meter.

Measuerment equipment that you can't trust is in some ways worse than nothing - if you have no VOM, fine, you know you don't know what voltage your car is charging to. But if you have a meter that reads high or low, you think you know what's going on, but in reality your meter is feeding you BS.

That said I don't know if your meter is good or not.

Try to take a reading on a friend's car. If 2 or 3 cars you test all read higher than normal voltage at idle, the issue is probably your meter.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-02-2011, 12:44 AM
 
10,713 posts, read 11,412,857 times
Reputation: 4751
14.6 is right on the money of how an alternator should run.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Automotive > Brand-specific forums > Toyota, Lexus, and Scion
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top