Electrical problem

Tiny
FRANK SNIDER
  • MEMBER
  • 1992 DODGE RAM
  • 6 CYL
  • TURBO
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 300,000 MILES
Lights will not work, and turn signals will not work, speedometer will not work and, alternator will not charge.

i had alternator checked and it was good. Truck will start and run but will not go into overdrive. Any ideals what is wrong, I am stuck on the interstate.
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Tuesday, March 21st, 2017 AT 6:08 PM

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Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
There must be more to the story. Why and how was the charging system tested? What were the exact readings? How did this problem start? If the engine runs, why are you stuck on the side of the road?
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Tuesday, March 21st, 2017 AT 6:21 PM
Tiny
FRANK SNIDER
  • MEMBER
Ok sorry not stuck on road. We made it to a town. Now in a room. Truck will not go into overdrive. Took off alt. And went to advance to have it checked. I watched as charging hand went down to 0 and everything just quit working, any ideals now?
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Tuesday, March 21st, 2017 AT 6:47 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Charging meter on the dash or the test bench?

Testing the alternator off the engine is not an effective way to test it. That overlooks the most common sources of problems in the system.

The fastest way to tell if the system is working is to measure the battery voltage with the engine running. It must be between 13.75 and 14.75 volts. If it is low, measure the two voltages on the two small terminals on the back of the alternator. That must be done with the engine running. One will have full battery voltage on it. The other one should have less, but not 0 volts. Typically you'll find 4 - 11 volts. If you find exactly the same on both, there is a break after that. Most commonly that is due to corroded terminals in the connector going to the voltage regulator in the Engine Computer. If you find 0 volts on the second wire, the brushes are worn inside the alternator. A nine-dollar assembly will fix that, or you can just replace the alternator.

The third wire is the large output wire bolted to the back of the alternator. That one must have full battery voltage all the time. If it is missing, there is a blown large fuse or fuse link wire. That can be caused by accidentally grounding the terminal with a wrench, but the more common cause is two or more shorted diodes inside the alternator. For that, the alternator and the fuse must be replaced.
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Tuesday, March 21st, 2017 AT 7:26 PM

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