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The Gentleman's Express: Tech-Tips from the JIOC

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Watch Your Voltmeter

Author: TECH

The voltage indicator on the dash can give you a lot of information:

  1. The steady volts when atspeed, no fans or airconditioning.
  2. The pull-back when the fans are running, all two or three as the case may be. If the pullback is not as much as usual, maybe a fan is not doing its stuff.
  3. It is easy to see the pull-back of the air conditioning clutch solenoid, and the fan.
  4. If at your usual ‘check speed’ you notice that the volts do not go as high as usualmaybe a slight pull-back of about 1/8 inch of needle travel, it usually denotes that your battery terminals are getting somewhat dirty. If that goes too far, one time you will try to start the engine and all there will be is possibly just a ‘click’!
  5. The voltage dropping to the value registered when the key is on but motor not running will usually indicate loss of the alternator belt. In the worst case, the alternator itself may be out. If you do change the alternator, it is good practice to replace the regulator as well. Keep the old one as a spare!
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Contents copyright 2008, 2009 - Jody F. Kerr

All references to They Might Be Giants are fan references only. John & John I hope you don't mind! And if you're ever in Phoenix stop by for a visit!

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