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Old 08-26-2006, 04:05 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question alto fuel gauge stops working

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HY

My suzuki alto fuel gauge doesn't work no more, so does the battery warning light; it keeps on. This started after jump starting the car when it had a dead battery.
So I guess it's a dashboard problem.
Anybody knows if there are fuses other then the fusebox (down left under the dashboard)?
Or what this problem might be and how to solve

Thnx
skippy
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Old 09-01-2006, 10:50 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Make sure your charging system is working properly. Sometimes when a charging system fails it will cause strange electrical feedbacks. Your battery indicator light will usually stay on when your charging system is not working.

Larry.
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Old 09-02-2006, 05:35 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default alto fuel gauge

Thanks shadow.....

Actually the power my dynamo is giving of is a bit to low (some bloke in a garage tested it 4 me)
But the battery is still being charged, no problem with that.
Could it be the dynamo???

cheers skippy
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Old 09-02-2006, 05:41 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Why was the car jump started? The battery was dead, I assume. Why was the battery dead? Was something left on that drained it?

A lot of vcars with IC regulated alternators would often do one of two things when jump started. They would blow diodes in the alternator, or blow the IC regulator.

from your description this is probably what has happened.
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Old 09-02-2006, 09:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default diodes?

Hy,

Jumpstarted cos the lights where left on overnight,
and Jumpstarted connecting + & - of the 2 batteries with eachother.
(should have been the - connected to a metalpart of the engineblock, cos my battery was flat-empty)

Would you know how to test the (possible) responsible diode?

thanks a lot
skippy

Last edited by skippy; 09-02-2006 at 09:43 AM.
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Old 09-02-2006, 10:00 AM   #6 (permalink)
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The problem most likely accured not from jump starting the car, but from when the jumper cables were released. At that time, the alternator was instantly required to go to 'full field' because your battery was very dead. This is why you should always let a car being jumped to charge the battery from the jumping vehicle for several minutes prior to starting. This puts some voltage into the dead battery, reducing this power surge. If it is indeed still charging a little most likely it has blown a diode or two.

There should be six diodes inside the alternator. The alternator actually puts out AC voltage, it is the job of the diodes to convert AC to DC. A diode is like a check valve, allowing current to go one direction only.

I am unfamiliar with what alternator you may have, so I cannot give you specific directions. But if you pop your alternator open, there should be six little black things that are soldered into a heat sink, a metal or aluminum block with a bunch of fins on it for cooling. The heat sink with the diodes installed is called a rectifier, or rectifier bridge.

You can test the diodes with an ohm meter. Test them individually, each one should show continuity one direction, but if you switch the leads of your ohm meter around you will get an open circuit. A bad diode will show continuity both ways, or more likely in your case, open circuit both ways. You may be able to see visually which diodes are blown, they may have evidence of overheating. If it is still charging a little you probably have one or two blown diodes. Diodes are not expensive, just make sure you replace them with some that are at least the same rating as the ones you take out. The bigger the better, so to speak.

Larry
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Old 09-02-2006, 04:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks Larry,

Cheers
Marcel
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