What is my battery voltage telling me - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2020, 10:39 PM Thread Starter
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What is my battery voltage telling me

Hello all,

i have been having some trouble starting my bike lately. I have had to jump it on about three occasions now and had to push start it once. To preface this, I do not ride too often about once every two weeks and some times once a month. I also do not have it on a trickle charger as I do not have access to power where I store my bike. I finally purchased a trickle charger and charged it to 100% went on a ride twice. My last ride being on Sunday and when I tried starting it up again today (Friday) it would not start. The voltage before turning the bike on was 12.5V once the bike was on the voltage dropped to 11.9V. Once I jumped the bike with a battery pack the battery voltage was at 12.5V. After the ride, I checked the voltage again and it was reading at about 12.7V when off and 12.4 while the bike was on. After starting the bike voltage went up to 12.9V and giving it some revs the bike went up to about 13.9V. After letting off the throttle the voltage would drop again.

I did not have to jump the bike throughout my ride. I made a few stops and went on a fairly long ride without turning off the bike for 1-1.5hrs at highway speeds.

I am assuming my battery is probably toast but wanted to see if anyone thought my alternator was bad too? Also, has anyone tried Battery Mart batteries? I'd like any feedback on those batteries if you had.

Thank you
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-31-2020, 10:55 PM
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If your voltage went up to 13.9 when the throttle was increased, then the charging system is working properly.
But notice that at low RPMs, the voltage output is low. That is usual for most charging systems.
At idle RPMs, the battery may be losing charge.

If you don't have power to charge the battery where you store the bike, you have 2 options.
1. Ride the bike long enough to recharge the battery every time you ride.
2. Take the battery out of the bike and charge it between rides.

I installed a voltmeter on my bikes to monitor the charging voltage when I ride.

You can have the battery tested at an auto parts store to determine if it needs to be replaced.

1988 NT650 (Hawk GT) & 1989 VTR250 (Interceptor)
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-01-2020, 07:52 AM
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depending on storage circumstances perhaps a solar powered maintainer would work. Some of them have longer cords and are weather proof.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-01-2020, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by counterattack View Post
Hello all,

i have been having some trouble starting my bike lately. I have had to jump it on about three occasions now and had to push start it once. To preface this, I do not ride too often about once every two weeks and some times once a month. I also do not have it on a trickle charger as I do not have access to power where I store my bike. I finally purchased a trickle charger and charged it to 100% went on a ride twice. My last ride being on Sunday and when I tried starting it up again today (Friday) it would not start. The voltage before turning the bike on was 12.5V once the bike was on the voltage dropped to 11.9V. Once I jumped the bike with a battery pack the battery voltage was at 12.5V. After the ride, I checked the voltage again and it was reading at about 12.7V when off and 12.4 while the bike was on. After starting the bike voltage went up to 12.9V and giving it some revs the bike went up to about 13.9V. After letting off the throttle the voltage would drop again.

I did not have to jump the bike throughout my ride. I made a few stops and went on a fairly long ride without turning off the bike for 1-1.5hrs at highway speeds.

I am assuming my battery is probably toast but wanted to see if anyone thought my alternator was bad too? Also, has anyone tried Battery Mart batteries? I'd like any feedback on those batteries if you had.

Thank you
https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...t+battery+life
Go to post 33, the very last post. A couple things, the OEM battery Yuasa is cheap and normally lasts for 5 to 6 years for me. One thing, once a cell fails, your battery becomes a constant load, since you have a meter, depending how old your bike is, it is possible to have a charging problem, jump starting is a terrible idea, OK in a emergency, however expect the battery to fail much sooner if it hasn't already.
I have a post for stator testing https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...on-thread.html You will need a charger hooked up to your battery for this test, as you will be running solely off the battery for several minutes.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-02-2020, 07:01 AM
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After a long absence from riding , took the bike for a ride and encountered some set back on the voltage. At traffic junction the voltage would be 10.7V and normal running around 95km/hr the voltage would be around 11.3V.No problem staring as i made several stops and the bike is always on C-Tex charges. Battery is a few years old and original charging system on my 09ner. Bike mileage is 62k KM.

Right now am thinking to change the battery/charging system , but will take another ride before considering changing.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-02-2020, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastoman View Post
After a long absence from riding , took the bike for a ride and encountered some set back on the voltage. At traffic junction the voltage would be 10.7V and normal running around 95km/hr the voltage would be around 11.3V.No problem staring as i made several stops and the bike is always on C-Tex charges. Battery is a few years old and original charging system on my 09ner. Bike mileage is 62k KM.

Right now am thinking to change the battery/charging system , but will take another ride before considering changing.
As in the title, I would be testing the stator first, once a battery goes, it becomes a constant load rather than a storage means.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-03-2020, 04:12 PM Thread Starter
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I am fairly sure the battery is going to be toast. When I bought it used from the previous owner they had to jump it too and I've jumped it twice since. I rode it on Sunday for about 2hrs or so at highway speeds which should be enough the full charge the battery right? Yet, on the following Friday, it did not have enough juice to start. On my other bikes and especially my R3 I would let it sit for weeks at a time with no charger and it would start right up I'd take it for an hour or two ride at highway speeds let it sit again and it'd fire right up. The oem battery was about 3 years old and still had zero issues. I will look into the solar powered charger though.

You said the OEM Yuasa battery is cheap I have a 2017 Ninja 650 and the OEM battery is the YTZ10S which is about $170 on Revzilla :/. Also, is jumping bikes with a battery pack bad for the batter or bad for the bike or both? What about push starting?

Thanks
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-03-2020, 06:18 PM
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If you have a bad battery and you jump start or push start, the bike is running off voltage supplied by the charging system, not voltage stored in the battery. Therefore the charging system is producing voltage non stop. The charging system is not designed for this. This could cause the stator and rectifier to over heat and fail. REPLACING A BAD BATTERY IS A HELL OF A LOT CHEAPER THAN REPLACING A CHARGING SYSTEM.

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-04-2020, 07:42 AM
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All vehicles run from the charging system, not the battery. All of them. If your vehicle is running from the puny battery, you won’t be going far. The battery is basically just for starting the engine.

That said, having a weak battery may cause issues with the electrical system as the battery acts as a “damper” on the entire electrical system. This is an over-simplification, but as much detail as I want to get into...

Kawasaki put the cheapest charging system possible into the 650 engine (my ‘82 Yamaha 400 has a better charging system.). The voltage regulator is the biggest problem, and it typically damages the stator. There has been plenty written here about the problems, testing, and solutions. I’m not going to repeat it all.

Dave

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-04-2020, 11:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skypilot 69 View Post
If you have a bad battery and you jump start or push start, the bike is running off voltage supplied by the charging system, not voltage stored in the battery. Therefore the charging system is producing voltage non stop. The charging system is not designed for this. This could cause the stator and rectifier to over heat and fail. REPLACING A BAD BATTERY IS A HELL OF A LOT CHEAPER THAN REPLACING A CHARGING SYSTEM.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/YTX12-BS-12...ee94%7Ciid%3A1

Here is my link https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...hlight=battery


https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...hlight=battery
I highlighted that because you are 100% wrong, in fact those that convert to a Polaris regulator, some thought it would be a advantage to connect the regulator output directly to the battery. In fact that is the worst thing you could do, the wiring to the battery is strictly for starting a supplementing power when at idle and the power draw exceeds idle stator output.The regulator output is connected to the main 30 amp fuse which then feeds multiple points all fused, some keyed on some relay driven.


Quote:
Originally Posted by 16VGTIDave View Post
All vehicles run from the charging system, not the battery. All of them. If your vehicle is running from the puny battery, you won’t be going far. The battery is basically just for starting the engine.

That said, having a weak battery may cause issues with the electrical system as the battery acts as a “damper” on the entire electrical system. This is an over-simplification, but as much detail as I want to get into...

Kawasaki put the cheapest charging system possible into the 650 engine (my ‘82 Yamaha 400 has a better charging system.). The voltage regulator is the biggest problem, and it typically damages the stator. There has been plenty written here about the problems, testing, and solutions. I’m not going to repeat it all.

Dave
Something I am going to point out as to jump starting / boosting/ running with a pooched battery. Dave is 100% right in everything he said. So I have been running series regulators since 2008 or 2009, first was the CompuFire, then 4012941 Pollaris and now the 4016868 Polaris. One extremely important point on the MK-3, all sensors are now 5 volts DC , driven by a power supply. What I have noticed is when I am riding at or above 5000 RPM and I am running low on fuel, if the low fuel starts flashing while at a stop, this has happened several times as well as first starting out in the morning with a almost full fuel tank, in both cases , about 3 minutes after reaching above 3500 RPM and remaining there, my fuel gauge will stop flashing and if I maintain that RPM I get roughly 12 more kilometers before it starts flashing and stays flashing, also first thing in the morning, about 3 minutes after reaching above 3500 RPM and remaining there, I get a additional bar. So what is the explanation? the fuel gauge along with many other devices on the MK-3 were designed around a 14.0 to 14.5 VDC operating system.
So why this long explanation? Running a bad battery you will never reach 14.2 VDC or above. As to damaging the charging system or damaging the stator, both false as to a shunt regulator, for you guys using a series regulator with a china stator, first if the battery is pooched , the regulator will not fire, secondly if the regulator does fire and you are using a china stator such as what RM Stator sells, expect to be replacing your stator shortly.

In the interest of those reading this, as to a shunt regulator, it is explained in my battery thread, however for those converting to led headlights from original, be aware the shunt regulator will be given a increased load directly proportional to the load reduction of the headlights. I have said this before, I very much doubt Kawasaki engineers consider this and you should expect regulator failure on a very hot day.

I have 3 polaris 4012941 regulators I intend to put up for sale shortly, I have my old CompuFire as baxkup and have run the 4016868 long enough to be confident I don't need anymore spares.
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Last edited by onewizard; 02-04-2020 at 11:22 AM.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-09-2020, 08:19 AM
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After a long absence from riding , took the bike for a ride and encountered some set back on the voltage. At traffic junction the voltage would be 10.7V and normal running around 95km/hr the voltage would be around 11.3V.No problem staring as i made several stops and the bike is always on C-Tex charges. Battery is a few years old and original charging system on my 09ner. Bike mileage is 62k KM.

Right now am thinking to change the battery/charging system , but will take another ride before considering changing.
Well, today on my weekend ride, voltage dropped to 7.5v and GPS went off, ODO dead and bike stopped. Call in a friend and have tow the bike to his workshop. most probable the alternator winding is cooked after 9 years. Just don,t have the time to DIY. Will see what happens tomorrow when i visit the workshop.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-09-2020, 02:08 PM
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Series Regulator ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastoman View Post
Well, today on my weekend ride, voltage dropped to 7.5v and GPS went off, ODO dead and bike stopped. Call in a friend and have tow the bike to his workshop. most probable the alternator winding is cooked after 9 years. Just don,t have the time to DIY. Will see what happens tomorrow when i visit the workshop.
Look for a PM, if your stator is shot, a few choices available, also are you running the OEM regulator?
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-09-2020, 10:14 PM
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Look for a PM, if your stator is shot, a few choices available, also are you running the OEM regulator?
Send Pm and Yes , its still OEM Original. Bike is only 62K km on ODO.
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