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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 09, 08:47 PM Thread Starter
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one more try... generator light on

Ok guys, Ive ask about this a few months ago and I have read some back threads and there never seems to be a definative answer. Here goes. With the switch in the OFF postion the gen light is on very dim. I unhooked the battery but when I hook the battery up, sometimes I can hear the VR vibrating and the gen light is on. I can unhook the 2 wire plug on the back of the alternator and the light will go out. I can unhook the ground from the VR and the vibrating stops. When I touch the small ground wire on the VR to the rad support, it sparks. All this with the switch in the OFF postion. Ive put 3 VR's on it, and 3 alternators. This one problem is kicking my butt.

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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 09, 10:41 PM
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Re: one more try... generator light on

I would compare wiring between the Chevelle and Camaro as they are the same, if both are equipped with ext VR. In fact, you could swap parts between the two cars to help isolate, but only after checking wiring and being sure the two cars have the same voltage readings on all wiring with the key off.

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 09, 10:48 PM Thread Starter
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Re: one more try... generator light on

that would have been a good idea but I just sold the chevelle so that option is not here anymore.

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 09, 10:55 PM
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Re: one more try... generator light on

Waht is the voltage difference between the VR chassis and rad support without the ground strap?
Gen light wire, brown?, may be in the wrong place from ignition switch.
Definitely should check the terminated ends of wires fromt he VR to the rest of the car.
One lead will have battery voltage as it is connected to battery and BAT on the alt.

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 21st, 09, 09:48 AM Thread Starter
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Re: one more try... generator light on

everett thanks for the help but.... when it comes to electrical issues, you have to spell it out for me. I need to know details of exactly you need for me to do. When you tell me to check the voltage between the chassis and rad support, Im not clear what Im suppose to do. I didnt know there was current between them??? Im electrically challenged!!! lol

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 21st, 09, 02:13 PM
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Re: one more try... generator light on

just throwing this in there.... i'd switch to a wells 715 electronic regulator for two reasons. one, no adjustments necessary. and two, it does a MUCH better job of sustaining the correct voltage level throughout the RPM range, it's better for battery life.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 21st, 09, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
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Re: one more try... generator light on

Ok guys, here is the what I did. I took the VR off and installed an electronic one. And I found a ground wire that goes to the dash that didnt seem to be very secure. After doing those two thing, I noticed the gen light burning while the car was idling in the garage but after going for a ride, the light went out and stayed out. Have I fixed it or am I just lucky right now?

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 21st, 09, 06:02 PM
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Re: one more try... generator light on

the OEM alternator didn't put out very much and the light would come on at low RPMs. Sometimes once you zap the throttle and get it spun up, the light would go out and stay out. It really depended on your idle speed. Sounds to me like it may be fixed.

When you said the light was on with the ignition off, I was corn-fused though. That should not happen under any circumstance or else your ignition switch or wiring is suspect.

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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 21st, 09, 06:07 PM
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Re: one more try... generator light on

Very good. As dnult suggests, 'You be fixed!'
Now, will the battery be dead tomorrow morning?........only the Shadow knows...........

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 21st, 09, 09:19 PM Thread Starter
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Re: one more try... generator light on

Everett, that is exactly what I was thinking, I left everything hooked up tonight, VR, alternator, etc. The battery in new so if it is dead in the morning, Ill have to keep looking. Thanks for all t he help guys.

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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 21st, 09, 09:36 PM
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Re: one more try... generator light on

If it is, let us know. There is a simple trick you can do with a test lamp to find a drain. I hope your good.

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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 23rd, 09, 06:38 PM Thread Starter
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Re: one more try... generator light on

Ok guys, not so good after all, so this is what Ive done now. Next day, dead battery. I charged the battery real good, unhooked the charger and started looking for a problem. I disconected the ground wire from the battery and rad support, put a test light between the battery and ground wire. Light came on as you would expect. I pulled every fuse, no luck. Unplugged every wiring connection that I could find ( coil, oil sending unit, temp sending unit, etc.) nothing. I unhooked the wiring harness to the VR and no change. Unhooked the 2 wire harness to the alt. an nothing but then I noticed something. The alternator was very warm from when the charger was hooked up I guess. I unhooked the hot wire to the alternator and the test light went out. I temporarily hooked up another alternator and the test light stayed out. The one that was on the car was new... internal ground maybe??? Can bad diodes do all this??

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 23rd, 09, 08:08 PM
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Re: one more try... generator light on

A shorted diode will discharge the battery.
The test alternator, was it connected to ground/engine during this test?

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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 23rd, 09, 08:09 PM
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Re: one more try... generator light on

Sounds like a shorted diode inside the alternator. Any chance the battery was hooked up backwards at some point or jumped backwards?

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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 09, 12:58 PM Thread Starter
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Re: one more try... generator light on

yes everett I did have the test alt. grounded with a jumper. Ive switched out the alternator and hooked the mechanical VR back up and all is well. No shorts now. Thanks for all the help.

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