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Discussion Starter #1
Thanks to another great product from Electrical Connection, my GL now has a volt meter.
Great instructions, thanks to Lewis and the gang.

I had the battery drain down this fall because the connections at the battery were loose. I had checked them in
summer, but I guess the cold weather caused them to contract, if I had the meter then I would have known it was not charging.

When I had my '93 1500, I left on a trip and first my cruise would not engage, then the radio went off.
When I stopped I found I had a dead battery and the alternator was done. HRCA came to the rescue on that trip, they
called the local dealer (Fond Du Lac, WI) at home,he met me at the dealership and took off an alternator from a showroom bike.
I did not want that again.
You would think Honda would at least put a low voltage warning on the display.
Bought it from Hal during the 10% sale, (was back ordered) best $53 I spent....
 

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Tell me where you installed the meter and how !!! I need to do the same and get one for my bike.
 

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blento said:
if I had the meter then I would have known it was not charging.
I don't understand how would a voltmeter indicate charge, or lack thereof? Please explain.
 

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very simple. on my bike when the engine is running, the volt meter will show 14.2 volts. if I ever see much less than that I know to start checking things out, quick.
 

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That style will not work for me because I have the 06 with NAV. The controls for my NAV are in that panel.
 

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I have an 06 non nav and i bought the kuryakan led light type, two wire connection. It has 6 lights, 2 green 2 yellow and 2 red, auto dims at night. The honda mechanic told me that as long as the led are green while running, that ment the charging system was working to charge and maintain the battery. If the lights go to yellow, your alt might not be charging and get it to a shop to have it looked at. and we all know what red means, your walking home. without a guage, you would loose the radio, then the guages then you walk . I like mine alot, it mounts with double back tape anywhere, and its fun to look at...
 

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sonat said:
very simple. on my bike when the engine is running, the volt meter will show 14.2 volts. if I ever see much less than that I know to start checking things out, quick.
The voltmeter will show that (about 14 volts) with the key on and the engine not running.

It seems most folks confuse what a voltmeter "shows". They only indicate a potential across the battery. That's why one has to do much more testing to see if the battery is good, i.e., put it under load. By the time they start to register less potential, the battery is about dead. Voltmeters don't tell one much.

Auto makers used to put ammeters on vehicles. Those devices indicate charge or discharge. I guess they moved away from them because most folks didn't understand all the fluctuation an ammeter shows. They went to voltmeters because they are relatively static. I still don't understand what good voltmeters are.
 

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A fully charged battery with no load should read about 12.6 volts. A battery around 12.4 (ish) is at about 75% capacity. The only time a battery without a running alternator attached to it would read 14 volts is on a 16 volt battery (which is used in race cars and competition car audio).

Anything above 12 volts is typically considered a charge. There are a bunch of varaibles tho.

Amp guages of old required a cable from the alternator to the gauge and then from the gauge back to the battery. This setup was famous for electrical fires. Current technology uses a shunt to measure the current shift and convert that data to an amp readout.

You should notice on an 1800 that once you start the bike, the voltage will jump after about 8-10 seconds. Thats how long it takes for the alternator to kick in.
 

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to me a vote meter is all I think I need. when I first turn on my key on the volte meter will read my battery voltage, normaly about 12 to 12.5 volts. when I start the bike and the head lights come the voltage I see at that time can be a fair indicator of the battery condition after hitting it with the load of the starter and then the head lights coming on without the charging system working just yet. after starting my bike the volt meter will show around 11 to 11.5 volts. in a few seconds you will see the charging system come on line and the volts will rise to 14.2 volts. this shows to me that the charging system is indeed fuctioning. I don't really worry about amps, I think if they voltage is there the amps will take care of themselves.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I agree with sonat, all I want to know is IF the alt. is putting out more than 12 volts.
There could still be a problem with the battery, but if it is serious enough the alternator will not
be able to keep the battery above 12 v anyway. If you turn off the engine and the volts are less than
10 or 11, you got a battery problem....the battery is not fully charging
 
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