Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights? - Team Camaro Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 01:33 AM Thread Starter
Gold Lifetime Member
Mark
 
mshaw67's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Washington
Posts: 270
Garage
Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

On a road trip, no tools with me, Gen light comes on. Helpful guy pulls out DMM and we pinpoint alternator most likely culprit. New alternator and back on the road. Already replaced battery, cable, visible link before the road trip.

Driving at night, I notice the VR changing voltages. Usually headlights dimmer, then switch to brighter. Sometimes for a second, sometimes longer.

Is this expected behavior? Should I buy and install a new VR before my final leg in the journey? I've got another 600 miles to go.

Thanks,
Mark
mshaw67 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 02:38 AM
Admin/Super Moderator
Brian
 
69-Pace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Connecticut USA
Posts: 12,511
Garage
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

Old style mechanical Voltage Regulator I assume. You will benefit from upgrading to a Wells Airtex solid state Voltage Regulator. Mounts up the same way but does all the calculations for you, no manual adjustments required for seasonal changes and new batteries, alternators, belts etc that the mechanical style required - not that many do any adjusting of their mechanical ones hoping the last setting and calculation is still valid. The Wells units work great, and are designed to look like the OEM and even will take the high hat case cover of the old unit so no one ever know you upgraded to solid state technology.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

1969 Z11 Pace Car - L48 350cid/300hp - 4 Speed Muncie 12 bolt rear.

Super Moderator Team Camaro
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
to send me a private message
69-Pace is offline  
post #3 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 09:35 AM
Retired
Jim
 
click's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Central Minnesota
Posts: 15,994
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

Wells VR715 is the part number you want, plug and play, easiest fix you can do on the car.

Click..is Jim..former owner of a 69RS-LM1 350/255 - 700r
"There will come a time when you believe everything is finished,
That will be the beginning." Louis L'Amour
click is offline  
 
post #4 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 10:23 AM
Probationer
Ted
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 5
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

also check all the connections on your vr. Mine had a bad end that took me a year to find.
twlove is offline  
post #5 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 04:22 PM
Senior Tech
Scott
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Southern NH
Posts: 2,457
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

I agree with the others, if you still have a mechanical voltage regulator upgrade to the Wells VR715 and you'll be happy you did as will your classic car.

69 Camaro Z/28 RS, original Azure Turquoise, M21 & 3.73 12-bolt posi. NOM 406ci, AFR 210 heads, Straub hyd. roller cam & Dynatech 1-3/4" > 1-7/8" headers, QuickFuel 750 Annular. Photos at:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
NH69Z28RS is offline  
post #6 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 05:05 PM
Senior Tech
Brian
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,290
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

I had similar issues recently. Had to jump through hoops to get a Wells VR715 sent to me here in Canada and it worked amazingly. Changed from an Ammeter to Voltage gauge, and found a cracked plug on the alternator, that had a loose wire. All corrected and now everything works great. Did find when I was cruising at 60 in the evening the voltage gauge was at 12 volts only lights running. I booted it up to 70 and around 2500 rpms and it kicked it up to 14 volts and stayed there. Still all in all very happy with the fixes.

I have owned 3 69 Z/28s: Garnet Red 30,000 mi unrestored.
Glacier Blue, documented Canadian Z
Rallye Green purchased new in 1969
1968 Camaro Coupe L30 275 horse. ]
Stewie is offline  
post #7 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 06:21 PM
Senior Tech
Craig
 
Craig1969's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: East Coast
Posts: 711
Send a message via AIM to Craig1969 Send a message via MSN to Craig1969 Send a message via Yahoo to Craig1969
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

Fixed my EXACT symptoms with this exact part. Even run halogens now...no issues other than having to buy a GOOD dimmer switch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by click View Post
Wells VR715 is the part number you want, plug and play, easiest fix you can do on the car.

Prepare to be the center of attention when you drive a first generation Camaro. You will be gawked at. Grown men & women will coo like children when you drive past. Children will scream like babies. Dogs & cats will get along. Does it get any better?
Craig1969 is offline  
post #8 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 06:43 PM
Premium Member
Gordon
 
gordr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Kelowna, BC, Canada
Posts: 1,095
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stewie View Post
I had similar issues recently. Had to jump through hoops to get a Wells VR715 sent to me here in Canada and it worked amazingly. Changed from an Ammeter to Voltage gauge, and found a cracked plug on the alternator, that had a loose wire. All corrected and now everything works great. Did find when I was cruising at 60 in the evening the voltage gauge was at 12 volts only lights running. I booted it up to 70 and around 2500 rpms and it kicked it up to 14 volts and stayed there. Still all in all very happy with the fixes.
I live in Canada as well and I ordered and received 5 of them from Rock Auto 4 years ago for $11.25 each. They ship directly to Canada USPS. Rock Auto now has them for $36.25...prices have tripled in 4 years! The Wells VR715 is a great VR as I blew 3 old style regulators with a 100 amp alternator in a short period of time. The Wells unit still works on the same setup today after 4 years...

67 Plain Jane being assembled with 427, 4 spd Muncie, 12 bolt rear with Mosers, 4 wheel discs
gordr is offline  
post #9 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 08:14 PM
Senior Tech
George
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: LI,NY
Posts: 1,057
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

This is interesting. I switched to an internal regulator gm alt years ago. I always had problems with the vr on this car. Is there any benefit to going with a stock alt with the vr over the internally regulated unit? Other than it being correct and not a modification. I didnt cut any of the stock wires and could easily go back if there was a benefit.
carbuff67rs is offline  
post #10 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 10:12 PM
Admin/Super Moderator
Brian
 
69-Pace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Connecticut USA
Posts: 12,511
Garage
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

George - One of the more popular reads at Mad Electrical - one wire vs three wire alternators. http://www.madelectrical.com/electri...hreewire.shtml


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

1969 Z11 Pace Car - L48 350cid/300hp - 4 Speed Muncie 12 bolt rear.

Super Moderator Team Camaro
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
to send me a private message
69-Pace is offline  
post #11 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 30th, 14, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
Gold Lifetime Member
Mark
 
mshaw67's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Washington
Posts: 270
Garage
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

Thanks all for the info; I felt comfortable that I didn't need a VR. I made the final 600 mile just fine. 2,038 miles total.

The new electronic VR sounds like a winner.

Mark
mshaw67 is offline  
post #12 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 31st, 14, 02:42 AM
Admin/Super Moderator
Brian
 
69-Pace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Connecticut USA
Posts: 12,511
Garage
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

Glad you made it back safe.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

1969 Z11 Pace Car - L48 350cid/300hp - 4 Speed Muncie 12 bolt rear.

Super Moderator Team Camaro
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
to send me a private message
69-Pace is offline  
post #13 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 31st, 14, 07:42 AM
Tech Team
David
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Hanford, Ca
Posts: 47
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

Just changed to electronic regulator myself. No more random dead batteries. Would always have a battery charger n jumper cables in trunk. Removed old regulator's cover and mounted it to the new electronic regulator by drilling a couple of holes. New regulator was a lot thinner. It now looks like a original regulator by installing the old cover.
David_396 is offline  
post #14 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 31st, 14, 09:18 AM
Senior Tech
George
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: LI,NY
Posts: 1,057
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

I just picked one up for 14.95 shipped. Should be here end of the week. Ive got 3 correct alts in the basement collecting dust. Maybe I'll play around a bit with that. The internal reg alt is nice but it is a tad bigger and almost hits my valve cover with the correct belt.
carbuff67rs is offline  
post #15 of 35 (permalink) Old Aug 31st, 14, 09:32 AM
Admin/Super Moderator
Brian
 
69-Pace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Connecticut USA
Posts: 12,511
Garage
Re: Voltage Regulator - Bright/dim headlights?

I'm always amazed at the price range for Wells/AirTex units.
I've picked them up on rockauto.com with our discount for 6 bucks and less, and others here have posted 40 bucks and more on-line through other retailers and at local auto parts stores.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

1969 Z11 Pace Car - L48 350cid/300hp - 4 Speed Muncie 12 bolt rear.

Super Moderator Team Camaro
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
to send me a private message
69-Pace is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Team Camaro Tech forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address.
NOTE we receive a lot of registrations with bad email addresses. IF you do not receive your confirmation email you will not be able to post. contact support and we will try and help.
Be sure you enter a valid email address and check your spam folder as well.



Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome