Low voltage new alternator new battery - Team Integra Forums - Team Integra
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 12:02 PM Thread Starter
lu8
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Low voltage new alternator new battery

1994 Acura Integra GSR 288K miles. Iím the original owner, 23 years.

Iím posting this because I could never find anything with the same symptoms and a definitive solution. The symptoms were that after about 15 minutes of driving from cold the voltage would drop from normal (14+ V) to about 12.2V and the battery light did not come on. Also there was rough running at idle. If the RPMs were above 3500 then the voltage would return to normal. If I turned off the car and restarted it the low voltage would happen immediately. Switching accessories on and off did not change the voltage more than a few tenths. The battery was a couple months old and the distributor coils were replaced about 6 years ago. This seemed like the voltage regulator in the alternator going bad, failing when it got hot. So I replaced the original 23 year old alternator but the same thing happened, after 15 minutes the voltage dropped. Reading various posts people suggested that it could be bad grounds or even a problem with the ECU. Since I have a spare ECU I swapped it but same problem. The grounds, positive from alternator and to starter all looked good. Another post suggested the changing the distributor cap and rotor. Didnít seem like it was related but they were close to their 60K mile service interval. The old ones did have wear but nothing horrible. However, this fixed the problem, no more low voltage. I really donít understand why it fixed the problem. My wild guess is that the old distributor cap and rotor were pulling too much load causing the voltage regulator in the distributor to over heat and switch off. If anyone has a better explanation I would like to hear it.

I installed the volt meter about 2 years ago so if this happened before I would have only noticed the rough idle. Which had certainly happened before and the distributor cap and rotor would have been changed to fix it.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 12:07 PM
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Did this happen before the battery was replaced as well, or only after the battery was replaced?





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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 12:11 PM Thread Starter
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Only after the battery was replaced
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 12:32 PM
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Sounds like you have a bad cell in your battery. New battery doesn't necessarily equate to "perfect".

If it didn't do it before the battery replacement, and now does it after replacement, that would've been my first clue as a culprit, instead of replacing the alternator.

Even if you go have the battery tested, it might still show as "good". A loose/bad cell could be shorting itself while moving, and be perfectly fine when stationary.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 12:34 PM Thread Starter
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To be clear the new battery was fine for a couple of months before this started happening.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by lu8 View Post
To be clear the new battery was fine for a couple of months before this started happening.
I'm sure it was. I'm willing to bet that now it isn't.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 08:50 PM
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please let us know what brand of battery.
interstate is always a good bet esp from costco if you are or know a member.
battery tender too to extend lifespan.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-02-2017, 05:24 AM
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please let us know what brand of battery.
interstate is always a good bet esp from costco if you are or know a member.
battery tender too to extend lifespan.
I have bad experience with Interstate I went thru at least 2 battery in less then a year. Same thing happen the year after that. Now I only stick with OEM in my other cars except for my teg because I have AGM due to battery relocation.


I heard Deka is really good.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-02-2017, 08:16 PM
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hmmm i wonder if interstate is now made in china junk like a lot of formerly great brands?
(i'm looking at you gates and your crappy water pumps. never again! npw ftw!)
anyone tried a honda battery? i wonder who makes them.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 07:19 AM
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hmmm i wonder if interstate is now made in china junk like a lot of formerly great brands?
(i'm looking at you gates and your crappy water pumps. never again! npw ftw!)
anyone tried a honda battery? i wonder who makes them.
Some was made from Panasonic or Johnson Control.

Last edited by phatintegra; 03-03-2017 at 07:24 AM.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 10:11 AM Thread Starter
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The battery was purchased from CarQuest. The sticker on it says it was manufactured by Autocraft in Roanoke, VA.


I really don't understand how this can be a bad battery cell? Everything was fine for months after I put in the new battery before winter and everything has been fine for 3 weeks now after I replaced the distributor cap and rotor.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 11:23 AM
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The battery was purchased from CarQuest. The sticker on it says it was manufactured by Autocraft in Roanoke, VA.


I really don't understand how this can be a bad battery cell? Everything was fine for months after I put in the new battery before winter and everything has been fine for 3 weeks now after I replaced the distributor cap and rotor.
It's common sense, really. It was fine before, and now it's not. The only variable that changed here is the battery. Even though it was fine when you first purchased it, it could still have a manufacturing defect.

"I just bought this new car 3 months ago. I don't know how or why the check engine light is on" Same principal. Shit happens. Go get the battery checked. If you recently replaced it, then it should have some sort of warranty.



Regardless, suggestions have been given, and I think you have enough information to play with. You can either listen to the advice (since you did originally come here asking for it), or choose to diagnose yourself.

Last edited by jjkz24; 03-03-2017 at 11:26 AM.
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