GEN Light Staying On - Team Camaro Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical.

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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 2nd, 06, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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Charlie
 
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GEN Light Staying On

Just put on a new (rebuilt) alternator in my 69 about a month ago and now my generator "GEN" light is on and won't go off. What's this all about and how do I trobleshoot in order to fix it? ps: just had the clutch replaced today and was wondering if my GEN light problem had anything to do with my having used the starter motor to move the car up a small hill while in gear??? If so, what did I likely break?
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 2nd, 06, 09:02 PM
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

If you have a simple volt meter, check the voltage at the battery with the motor off. It should be 12.5 to 13 volts. Then start the motor and check it with it running. It should be 13.5 to 14.5 volts. If it is, the alternator is working. If it the same or slightly lower then you have a problem.

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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 11th, 06, 04:34 PM Thread Starter
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

Eric, thanks for getting my troble shooting started on this (I also read JimM's sticky on the subject). Battery Voltage with engine off = 12 volts. Battery Voltage with engine running = 14 volts. New rebuilt Alternator with engine running = 14 volts. And still, the darn GEN/Alternator dummy light stays on/glows. What should I do next? Thanks, Charlie in north Seattle

ps; I will also be troble shooting to fix the following as well: Fuel gaugue drops to E when light switch is pulled on, Temp gauge does not work, heater/defroster fan motor doesn't work, nor does the the wiper motor. (I just got this car a couple of months ago and working through the bugs---- best as I can with all of the help from TC).
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 12th, 06, 05:54 AM
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

Quote:
Originally Posted by camaromaniac
Eric, thanks for getting my troble shooting started on this (I also read JimM's sticky on the subject). Battery Voltage with engine off = 12 volts. Battery Voltage with engine running = 14 volts. New rebuilt Alternator with engine running = 14 volts. And still, the darn GEN/Alternator dummy light stays on/glows. What should I do next? Thanks, Charlie in north Seattle
What kind of regulator, mechanical or transistor? Just to be sure what kind of alternator, internally or externally regulated? Go here to see the differences
http://www.chevelles.com/forums/showthread.php?t=105661
Could be a problem with the regulator, there was someone else who was having the same problem,
http://www.chevelles.com/forums/showthread.php?t=132921
I don't have a answer to your problem, but you could always convert to a internally regulated alternator.

Greg U

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 12th, 06, 06:10 AM
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

If you have an external regulator, you need to run thru the rest of the checks in the sticky. One of the wires off the alternator, white if I'm remembering correctly, goes thru the reg and out on brown?? to turn off the gen light.

Int. reg is same, except it don't go thru the external reg.

Low voltage on that wire will make the gen light glow, just need to find out why.

Your first test definitely proved that the charging system IS working, the fault is strictly with the indicator light.





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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 12th, 06, 08:21 AM
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

For your other switches not working, check the dash ground. Sounds like it is feeding back looking for a good ground
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 12th, 06, 04:58 PM Thread Starter
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

Mine is an externally regulated alternator and I forgot to mention that I also changed out the original mechanical regulator with a new transistor unit. The problem is: my GEN dummy dash light stays on while the motor is running. When I unbolt the regulator from the radiator support (breaking the ground connection), the GEN light goes off, but the battery charge goes up to 18 volts with the motor running (which I assume is bad). Unfortunately, we tossed the old regulator at the parts store (non-matching numbers car). Does this help--what do I do next? My continued appreciation. Charlie

Last edited by camaromaniac; Jun 13th, 06 at 02:55 PM.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 12th, 06, 05:37 PM
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

There use to be Lake Serene Auto Electric on Hwy99 and about 164th. You might stop by and talk to them if they are still around. Not sure if they have moved as I haven't lived in Lynnwood for 10 years.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 12th, 06, 06:40 PM
 
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

How many wire connections. If only one as in the new ones and not two like the OEM, then your gen light will always stay on. Mine does.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 14th, 06, 08:28 AM Thread Starter
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

SSCam427, how many wires where? Please advise where you are making reference to as I'm a novis? I originally replaced the old alternator and original regulator because my headlights were dim and sporatic in brightness. Now with the new alternator & regulator, my headlights apprear to be working great, but my GEN light stays on while the motor is running. I see you (SSCam427) indicated that you have the same situation, but I'm not comfortable with it because I don't know enough about the electrical/charging system to say it's okay. So I ask T/C, if my battery and alternator both read 14 volts while the motor is running, am I good to go even though my GEN light continously shines a bright red? Thanks, Charlie
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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 14th, 06, 10:29 AM
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

If you are reading 14 volts, then your charging system is working, period, no woories there.

I'd still like the peace of mind of having that bright red light working correctly tho. As an example, if you tossed an alternater (& water pump) belt, would you rather find out immediately from that bright red gen light, or sometime later when the temp light came on or you noticed the temp guage reading high?

If you could complete the other voltage tests in the sticky and post your results, we could be more help.





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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 14th, 06, 05:01 PM Thread Starter
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

JimM, okay, here are my test results: Key Off; alt F = 0, alt R = 0, alt blue* (measured at regulator) = 0, alt white* (at regulator) = 0, alt red* (at regulator) = 12 volts, alt brown* (at regulator) = 0. Key On, engine not running; gen light on, alt F = 11 volts, 4th term on reg = 14 volts, no other changes. Engine Running @ 700 RPM; alt F = 5 volts, alt R = 7 volts and alt power = 14 volts. Engine Running @ 1,000 RPM; alt F = 3.5 volts, alt R = 7 volts & alt power = 14 volts. Plz note, this problem "came to light" after replacing both the alternator & original regulator because the headlights dimmed. Now, the headlights appear to be fine, but the GEN dummy light glows RED while Engine Running. Please let me know if more specific tests are needed or if you can draw a conclusion and recommendation with the above. ps: this is the first time I have ever tested the electrical charging system and it was fun! Thanks, Charlie *measurements were taken at the regulator as I was not clear where they would be on the alternator end.

Last edited by camaromaniac; Jun 15th, 06 at 01:45 PM.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 14th, 06, 08:51 PM
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

Charlie, all of your readings are in the normal range. That seems to be a pretty strong alternator, it's not being pushed too hard (the lower reading on the blue wire than I had in the sticky)

The only other reading I'd be interested in is the brown wire on the reg with the engine running.

Even without that reading, I'd suggest trying a different regulator.





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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 15th, 06, 01:42 AM
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimM

Even without that reading, I'd suggest trying a different regulator.
Someone else was having the same problem
http://www.chevelles.com/forums/showthread.php?t=132921
Could be defective regulators. The only way the light could come on is if its grounded, maybe testing with a ohm meter against a known good one might tell the story.

Greg U

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old Jun 17th, 06, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
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Re: GEN Light Staying On

JimM & Greg U, just wanted to give you guys an update: I took the new regulator back to Action Auto Parts and told them my sources (that would be you guys), felt the regulator might be suspect. They ran a check of the charging system and noted the battery & alternator checked out okay, but there was a very slight delay in performance out of the regulator. Put a new one on, and low and behold------- the GEN light went off when the motor started! Just goes to show that even brand new parts need to be checked twice. I can't thank you guys enough for walking me through all of this. As I said earlier, it was fun to follow you directions and very rewarding to actually see it fixed. Thanks X 1m! Charlie ps; I going to tackle my down temp console gauge next followed by the wiper motor. I'll be sure to look at what has already been posted here on tc to guide me, but you might see a future posting if I get stuck.
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