Author Topic: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#* (UPDATE) might be Stator?!  (Read 3047 times)

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Online FLH_Rider

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'00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#* (UPDATE) might be Stator?!
« on: Thursday, August 27, 2009. 06:22:32 PM. »
I recently replaced my regulator thinking that was my problem. Only because after I did replace it the volt meter looked ok (about 12+ at 1000 RPM and almost 14 at 2500+)
Well it started jumping around and most of the time it is 11 or less. I checked stator again and it is not grounded to case and is putting out about what it sould at 1000Vac and about 30Vac at 2500 RPM or so.
I put volt meter on battery and it is about 12volts (not running). Running the volt meter shows 12.5V at 1000 but the volt meter on the dash shows 11-11.5v
The meter on the bike does show almost 14 if I hold it steady at 2500 or so.

Am I paranoid, is gauge bad or should I be looking for a bare wire someplace?

UPDATE= Just throwing things against the wall to see what sticks,,,,
I have not had time to do much with my problem but last night I hooked up a volt meter and went for a ride. Conclusion Dash Volt meter very close to my test meter.
I am getting 10.5-11 volts at idle about 12 or a little over at 1500-2000 and it climbs to qbout 14 at 3000 rpm. When you start to go below 3000 it will gradually decline to less than 13 volts. One note checking battery voltage with nothing on it is about 12.1 volts. THe service manual says that is saying the battery is at about a 50% charge. Anyway, pulled stator plug to check VAC. Manual say bascially 15-20VAC per 1,000 RPM. At 1,000 I am getting about 9.35 now. At 200 I am getting around 20VAC. Lower readings than I had gotten in the past. So I am assuming I have a stator or rotor gradually going bad?
Am I correct in that and the next best thing is to tear it down and inspect the Stator?

Thoughts?!!
« Last Edit: Friday, September 04, 2009. 09:30:34 AM. by FLH_Rider »

Offline dunbarton

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #1 on: Thursday, August 27, 2009. 06:50:40 PM. »
I think you should be reading @ 14.2V at idle (@1050 rpm) otherwise your battery is discharging.
There are some tell-tale signs if the battery is loosing ground rather than fully charging. Your headlight will dim as rpm goes down. Starter doesn't turn the engine over very fast. 

Offline Ken R

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #2 on: Thursday, August 27, 2009. 07:08:11 PM. »
You may not have any problem at all.  
Volt meter at idle won't show 14+ volts, especially if the brakes are on.  12 to 12.5 might be normal for idle voltmeter reading.  14.2 to 14.5 at 2500 rpms should be normal (with or without brakelights on).  

Bare wire?  If a bare wire touches ground, you'll blow a fuse somewhere.  

Check the battery connections and then monitor the voltage as you ride to see if the battery charges during normal riding.

Ken

« Last Edit: Friday, August 28, 2009. 07:20:15 AM. by Ken R »

Offline les

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #3 on: Thursday, August 27, 2009. 08:32:10 PM. »
That sounds like a bad connection to the dashboard volt meter.  Try taking off the connector and cleaning the connection points.

Offline Ed Y

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #4 on: Friday, August 28, 2009. 06:26:28 AM. »
I've got an extra set of wires for my multimeter rigged up so I can hook to the battery, put the multimeter in my pocket or velcroed to the tank and take a ride. Much better measurements than the stock voltmeter in the dash.

I've seen a bunch of older EG's with either loose connections at the meter or elsewhere, plus wiring in the main harness in front of the tank where it makes the bend going up into the fairing that tends to stretch and break wiring strands.

Offline BikerJim44

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #5 on: Friday, August 28, 2009. 07:02:49 AM. »
Don't rely on the dash gauge. They aren't the most reliable reading. Also if you are riding an Ultra or something with a ton of lights and draw on the system it would be normal for it to shaw a lower voltage at idle as opposed to the RPM's being up in the riding range. My 08 Ultra's gauge shows about 11.5 on the dash when idleing but with the meter it shows about 12.5 so a volt or two difference on the dash gauge doesn't concern me if I don't see any droppage in the light brightness. Spidey.
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Offline Ken R

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #6 on: Friday, August 28, 2009. 07:25:20 AM. »
In an EG, almost all of the electricity to run the entire motorcycle leaves the battery, goes through a fuse or breaker (depending on model) then goes under the tank through an under-sized wire to the ignition switch, then goes back through more under-sized wires to the fuse block under the left side panel, then goes backthrough more wiring to the front end to power lights, hand controls, etc.  The voltmeter is in that final circuit.  It will almost always read lower than the actual battery voltage. 

It's normal for the panel meter to read less than 12 volts before cranking the engine.   It's normal for it to read 12 volts to 12.5 volts at idle (less with brake lights ON).  Cruisin' down the highway, though, it should read 14 to 14.5. 

Ken

Offline harleyjt

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #7 on: Friday, August 28, 2009. 08:15:49 AM. »
I agree with what has been said here to a point.   Since you state the gauge is "jumping around" it would lead me to a poor connection at the gauge or an issue with the wiring itself as Ken describes above.  Put a volt meter on the harness terminals at the gauge and see whats going on.  If your external voltmeter is jumping around like the dash gauge, then you may have a wiring issue.  If no jumping around, then the problem may be the connection at the gauge or the gauge itself. But even with a bad connection, I'm not sure I understand the jumping around.  I'll explain below.

My real concern here is you also state you are only seeing about 12v at idle. You didn't say (or I missed) what year/model you have.  But I have to take exception to some of what's being said here regarding charging at idle rpm.  As best I remember, each of my EFI Ultras have always read about 14 at idle - no real difference than at 2500 rpm. (My first Ultra was a 95 carb and it did act differently).  When I noticed my 02 reading only 12 v or so, at idle, I took it in to have it fixed.  They gave me the expected song and dance - its 14v at 2500 etc etc. Nothing wrong, no problem found, its all in your head.   I knew better, because it had changed from the way it used to work.  So I took it home anyway, and the next weekend, took the ERC course.  In the process, it killed the battery.  (Trust me - its no fun push starting an Ultra).  So I took it back to the shop, and asked them why, if all is ok as they maintain, and there is "no problem" with the charging system, why was I the only guy in the class whose battery went flat during the course?   Another technician diagnosed a defective regulator, and idle was back to 14v, and no more problems.

Anyway, just to confirm what I'm telling you above, I just went out and started my 08 Ultra cold.  The idle went to about 1300 or so and voltage was 14 or just over.  (Reading dash gauges here).  Spotlights on, brake lights on, radio playing etc.  I let it warm up and over the next 45 sec to a minute or so, the idle worked its way down to 1000, and the voltage remained the same.  I let off the brake, turnied off the spots, turned off the radio, still the same. Hit the brakes or spots and nothing changes on the voltmeter.  

Now if I shut the system down, the gauge drops slowly, not immediately.  On power up, the gauge moves slowly up to the indicated voltage - it doesn't spring up to the voltage.   So, this tells me the gauge movement is dampened to reduce fluctuations due to transient loading - brakes on/off, or low beam w/spots, vs high beam, etc.  Again, I don't know what year bike you have, but if its "jumping" around it may be a bad gauge.  But I'm still concerned about the low voltage, unless its an older model, maybe carb, with a lesser charging system than what the later EFI bikes use.  On those older models, I don't recall the gauge being dampened like what I am seeing now, and charging at idle would be less and you might see some gauge fluctuation, which may mean you don't have a probem.  

I hope that helps and doesn't just muddy the water for you.

Update - Sorry - all I gotta do is read...... :bf: ....00 FLHT.  I would assume its fuel inj, but could be a carb bike if its not an Ultra. 
jt
« Last Edit: Friday, August 28, 2009. 10:32:19 AM. by harleyjt »
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Offline Ed Y

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #8 on: Friday, August 28, 2009. 10:52:22 AM. »
I believe in 2000, FLHT models were only available with carbs.

Offline harleyjt

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #9 on: Friday, August 28, 2009. 11:13:20 AM. »
I guess I was taking FLHT as the generic model....  You are right though if its an EG Standard.  I remember the Ultras were all injected, the Classics could go either way.
jt
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Offline HotRock

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #10 on: Friday, August 28, 2009. 02:02:46 PM. »
Any other problems other than the voltmeter on the dash acting like it don't know what to do?   Cover that sucker up with black tape, don't need no stinking voltmeter.  If you have a problem with something not working........then start looking.

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #11 on: Friday, August 28, 2009. 02:34:52 PM. »
I should have given a better description of the bike. It is a 2000 FLHTC carb. It is 1550 with TC2G cams and SE heads flat top pistons. No problems so far with cranking. Lights do not dim. It will drop back slightly when I turn the spots off.
I am gling to pull the fairing off tonight and look at the connections and take soem readings.
I spoke with a good friend this morning and he mentioned he had problems in the past with a gauge on an older one.
I am going to go for a longer ride tomorrow if the weather cooperates here in Norhern Michigan. It seems like an early Fall right now.
Thanks for all the info,,,

Offline ron1026

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #12 on: Saturday, August 29, 2009. 09:36:02 AM. »
My 2000 flht show 12 v at idle and goes up to 14 at any riding speed, seems to be the norm.

 Ron

Offline Ken R

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #13 on: Saturday, August 29, 2009. 11:01:58 AM. »
I looked at mine a little more closely, too. 
It shows less that 12V before I start the motor.  After starting, the meter reads somewhere between 12 and 13 volts.  (lower with the brakes on).  But with any rpms over 2,000 or so, it tops out at over 14 volts and stays there as long as the motor is revved. 

Ken


Offline les

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #14 on: Saturday, August 29, 2009. 02:40:33 PM. »
Any other problems other than the voltmeter on the dash acting like it don't know what to do?   Cover that sucker up with black tape, don't need no stinking voltmeter.  If you have a problem with something not working........then start looking.


I recommend not covering the meter.  It has saved me a few times with I've been riding, looked down at it, made an immediate U-turn, and dashed home making it there just in time on batter power.  One other time it allowed me to just make it off the expressway to a gas station parking lot.  I don't ride more that 5 miles without a glance at the volt meter.

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#*
« Reply #15 on: Saturday, August 29, 2009. 06:35:50 PM. »
I haven't had a chance to get out and ride any it's been raining and forecasted low for tomorrow is 34 degrees here in Michigan.
Just for info the bike has about 75,000 miles on it. My problem may be I watch my gages to much.
Hopefully I'll get out for a while tomorrow,,,,

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#* (UPDATE) might be Stator?!
« Reply #16 on: Friday, September 04, 2009. 10:18:09 AM. »
modified initial subject,, Just wondering if there are other tests to determine Stator or Rotor or both
Or should I tearing down and then order parts?

Offline harleyjt

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#* (UPDATE) might be Stator?!
« Reply #17 on: Friday, September 04, 2009. 10:45:10 AM. »
Pull the primary tensioner inspection plate and take a whiff.  Does it stink - smell like an electrical burn?  If so, replace the stator.  If not, the stator is probably good.  They usually stink when they short out.
jt
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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#* (UPDATE) might be Stator?!
« Reply #18 on: Friday, September 04, 2009. 02:41:56 PM. »
Should have included I did pull the cover and either my smeller is bad or it has not progressed that far.
Battery was replaced one or two years ago.
CRS has kicked in and can not remember for sure.

Offline Big Dan

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Re: '00 FLHT Charging problem!?!?!&@#* (UPDATE) might be Stator?!
« Reply #19 on: Friday, September 04, 2009. 04:02:15 PM. »
Low output could be the magnets on the rotor have shifted. I just went through this with my '99. Half of the magnets were normal, half had shifted all together. So, when the normally spaced magnets rotated past the stator, it made voltage. When the shifted ones, or the empty spot where the magnets were originally rotated past the stator, it did not. It was only making voltage half of the time. My ac voltage readings were pretty much what you're getting. Definitely worth a look.
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