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Old 09-28-2013, 11:44 AM   #1
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Voltage Surge 2000 Ford Focus

We have recently been experiencing the Brake, ABS and Battery lights randomly flashing on the instrument panel. Also the lights will get notably brighter. I tested the voltage at the battery and noted surges near 18v. I don't have anything sophisticated...just a dial voltage meter. I figured the voltage regulator was bad and purchased a used alternator. I still have the same symptoms. I have a hard time believing that both alternators have a bad regulator. Not sure what else it could be.

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Old 09-28-2013, 10:08 PM   #2
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Moved to "General Technical Chat".
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Old 09-29-2013, 01:48 AM   #3
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Question your volt meter used there..............
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Old 09-29-2013, 09:13 AM   #4
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Defenently, test the multimeter with a few stable known sources (Like a new 9v or a few new AA's... Also check it's batteries. My digital mulitimeter will give me absurd readings when the batteries are low.

Also if it defalts to automatic (detects AC and DC voltage automatically) be sure that it is set manually for more accurate readings...
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Old 09-29-2013, 10:21 AM   #5
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I bet the multimeter is OK...

sucof22 this is what I want you to do:
Go right on the battery posts NOT the battery clamps measure the voltage
NOW go on the battery clamps and measure the voltage there

Your battery clamps have to be perfect! no corrosion and TIGHT!
Twist sideways the clamps must NOT move
Is there any wire insulation that is melted by the clamps? If so, then it must be corrected.

Report back
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Old 10-01-2013, 01:31 AM   #6
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When everything is right, the voltage difference between alternator and corresponding battery terminals should be 0.0x volts. (measure B+ at alternator to + on battery, alternator case to negative on battery)

Any deviation from this means you have a resistance due to poor connection which is usually from loose connection, corrosion at connection or terminal crimping.

Re-make all connections. Sand down and WD-40 before assembly if it looks corroded/rusted. If the corrosion is inside the crimping that attaches to wire, you may have to replace that cable if there's not enough length to cut off the terminal and put a new one.
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