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Old 11-08-2010, 09:29 AM   #1
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Voltage spike

Could a voltage spike from the marina cause my voltage regulator to go out?

I have a Balmar 75amp alternator with a BRS II Regulator. The regulator is toast and I have ordered a new one.

The question is. How could I prevent this from occurring again?

Short of disconnecting the regulator when ever I plug in the charger.

Any thoughts?

SD
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Old 11-08-2010, 10:04 AM   #2
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RE: Voltage spike

I would rather doubt that a voltage spike from the marine caused your regulator to die as it's not hooked directly to the incoming power. Power spikes are filtered out by the battery charger as well as the batteries themself.

As a side note when I had a BRS regulator it only last about 1.5 years of operation. Loved the Balmar Alternator but not the regulator. After I sold the boat it went out again six months later. I would consider a different regulator.

Dave
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Old 11-08-2010, 10:25 AM   #3
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RE: Voltage spike

Quote:
wingspar wrote:

I would rather doubt that a voltage spike from the marine caused your regulator to die as it's not hooked directly to the incoming power. Power spikes are filtered out by the battery charger as well as the batteries themself.

Just going by what the Balmar tec guy told me. He also said it could have been a lightining strike.
Not likely, as I have seen less than 5 lightening strikes here in Alaska in the past 30 years. More inland up by Fairbanks. Never around the coast.

SD*

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Old 11-09-2010, 05:01 AM   #4
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RE: Voltage spike

AN alternator HATES to loose the connection to the batts while operating.

First cause can be a batt switch movement , with out the field cutoff wired in.

Second is as simple as a crappy terminal or ground, if only for a moment.
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Old 11-09-2010, 05:20 AM   #5
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RE: Voltage spike

Install a Zap Stop. Inexpensive little diode which will save your alternator if a battery switch is moved or a wire gets loose while operating. You can find them at any marine store.
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Old 11-09-2010, 05:13 PM   #6
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RE: Voltage spike

Can you elaborate on "toast"??* I assume you mean the regulator has power and ground applied, but isn't putting out any field voltage - correct??* Or can you see something fried or burnt or ??

FF's comment about the alternator output or ground being opened briefly is the most likely "toasting" mechanism for the alternator or the regulator.* There is a lot of magnetic energy stored in the rotor that has to go somewhere when the alternator is putting out power.* If the battery or electrical bus suddenly isn't there, the voltage will soar.* Usually it takes out some or all of the alternator diodes.* If your regulator is powered from the alternator output ("battery") terminal, that could be what did it.
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Old 11-10-2010, 03:52 AM   #7
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RE: Voltage spike

Another reason for alts going south is a loose belt.

The slipping belt heats the alt pulley , which runs down the shaft , heating the alt.

KAPOW!
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Old 11-10-2010, 08:24 AM   #8
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Voltage spike

Quote:
Chris Foster wrote:




Can you elaborate on "toast"??* I assume you mean the regulator has power and ground applied, but isn't putting out any field voltage - correct??* Or can you see something fried or burnt or ??

I am not sure, as I am not*profecient with electrical components. All I know is that with the engine off and the charging system. A Truecharge 20+ smart charger, hooked to shore power the Regulator was hot to the touch and had melted the surface area on the top of the regulator. One of the lights was on on the regulator. I disconnected the Regulator and ordered a new one from Balmar. Of course the harness would not work so I had to order a new harness also.


*Kieth I do have a zap stop installed.

I am not sure how to check the alternator to be sure it is still working.
*I have a linc 20 that shows a charge when the engine is running. Other than that. I am lost.


SD*


-- Edited by skipperdude on Wednesday 10th of November 2010 09:37:02 AM
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