dodge charging system

2001 Dodge Grand Caravan- Experiencing charging difficulty. Replaced battery about 2yrs ago, and the alternator made some noise this summer at low idle. I tried with amp probe and multimeter to locate problems. The
battery charge 12.4V and with the engine running 13.5V. I've tried disconnecting the neg. battery cable with engine running, it died. Amp Clamp at the alternator shows about 35amps with everything running, but it doesn't struggle- radio, a/c lights seem to run perfect. Tension on the belt seems fine and the noise at low rpm is not there. Could it be the alternator or pmu or could there be another drain wire and how could I find it?
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To avoid going into a lot of details, I would recommend that you take out the alternator and have it confirmed being faulty, most auto parts stores will do this free of charge. The alternator you have will put out at least 90amps. I believe that with "everything on" the Alt. should have been putting out more amps.--J

You should not do this, you could harm the electrical system with the surge. Anyway there is usually a short delay before the system will pickup the voltage drop, so usually the engine would usually conk. You are doing something that used to be ok with the older cars.
2001dodgemoney wrote:

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2001dodgemoney wrote:

A fully charged battery should be about 12.66 volts with zero load on it. 13.5 volts charging is about minimum for a healthy alternator working with a good battery. Try putting an 2 Amp overnight trickle charge on the battery to bring it up to full, disconnect charger, wait 3 hours and read the battery voltage. If you don't have at least 12.6 volts, the battery's bad. If the 12.6 volts IS there, it may be a weak alternator, VR, VR pigtail, or ground leads & other system connections.
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Somebody is quoting from a book, which is ok but does not give the field experience necessary. Although I agree that the "standing" battery charge is a little low at 12.4, it could be attributed to cranking and will still operate the vehicle, unless it drops to 12volts or less after a little cranking (which does not seem to be the problem here). It does not matter what kind of charge you put to it, although the preferred would be 40amps for 1hour.

Yes, there could be a lot of reasons, but do you know what the VR stands for? It is in the alternator, which would mean Faulty Alternator.
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anybody checked the battery for a dead cell?

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"Wrench007 via CarKB.com" wrote:

When my car/truck batteries get to the point where the standing overnight voltage drops to 12.4 volts consistently (in warm weather), it's time for me to start looking for the source of the problem, which is usually just an aging battery that's losing its ability to hold a full charge. You can throw a 40 Amp/one hour charge on there if you want to, but it's generally considered (by automotive engineers) to do an overnight trickle charge, since that will sometimes de-sulphate an aging battery. Your suggested method will likely kill some of the remaining life in an aging battery but, to each their own.
Yes, I know that VR = Voltage regulator, and that the VR is integral to the alternator, but it doesn't follow that a bad VR is an alternator problem just because it's attached to the alternator. I have replaced a so-called "internal" VR before, without touching the brushes, windings, bearings, etc. of the alternator itself. A little more work than replacing an external VR, but not much. I've even modified a "high output" (160A) alternator with an internal VR to work with an external VR so I could beef up the current output on an old project car.
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<snip>
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Actually, it's not.
I may be off a bit but the last mini van that used an integral voltage regulator would have been a 1987 with the Mitsushitty 2.6, everything since then has had the voltage regulator incorporated into the PCM (engine computer).
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aarcuda69062 wrote:

Technically, It does mean a faulty alternator, and you are off more than a bit, everything since '87 does not have the VR incorporated into the PCM
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Umm, no. If the voltage regulator is not inside the alternator, it is NOT a faulty alternator, technically or otherwise.

Excluding certain diesel powered trucks and/or badge engineered Mistushitty/DSM vehicles, which vehicles?
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No need to take the alt off to have it checked, you just did that, its charging!!! Load test the battery, more then likely it is at fault causing the problem....(assuming you put the amp probe at the battery) Glenn Beasley Chrysler Tech
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damnnickname wrote:

35 amps with everything running? I would say that is low. --J

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Keep in mind that this is an OBD2 system, If there were a problem with the alt output the check engine lite would have been turned on for a charging problem fault. It is not a good practice to remove a battery cable from the battery while the engine is running, thats a good way to fry components that are being used when this is done.
Glenn Beasley Chrysler Tech
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