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Discussion Starter #1
2001 650

Brand new "motobatt" battery fitted recently, all working fine, then one cold morning it only had enough power to turn the engine over twice, then went flat. Battery recharged from the mains. then all starts fine

I suspect the Oxford heated grips are killing the battery. They are wired via a relay and they have no power going to them when the ignition is off

I fitted a voltmeter ...and when riding at 4000 RPM with the lights and grips on 75-100% it is only reading 12.2-13.1 volts. When less than 3000 RPM it is only reading about 12 volts

Is this normal? Is this enough to charge the battery when riding with the heated grips on?

The voltage is reading 14 volts with the grips off.
 

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Sounds like grips are drawing it below what's needed to keep battery topped up. I've Honda heated grips on my 01 650 TA and never been able to have headlight on and grips on max, eben like you with a new batter, as grips are self regulating and shut off with insufficient voltage. Cleaning all contacts in the charging system will improve things a tad but don't expect too much. Might need an alernator upgrade if that's possible...

Funnily enough today mine wouldn't start desite the relatively mild day and needed a charge before I could pop out. I've been using it over Winter for short local journeys and always try to not use heated grips & just use the pilot driving light so not to stress the charging system.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
mm.. thanks. the weird thing is i have the same make/model grips and battery on my TA 600 and never seem to have any trouble with that

can the 650 alternator even be upgraded?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
i've the same problem this year, whenever i put the heated grips on (even on the low) setting, the alternator struggles to get 12 volts into the battery, hence it loses charge

i don't think the alternator on the 650 is very strong
 

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i've the same problem this year, whenever i put the heated grips on (even on the low) setting, the alternator struggles to get 12 volts into the battery, hence it loses charge

i don't think the alternator on the 650 is very strong

First thing to say electrics are far from my strong point!----

Alternator output all at 5000 RPM

87 -- 88 600 310w
89 -- 93 600 350w
94 -- 99 600 310w

650 UK model 368w
650 EUROPEAN model 310w

650 alternator is stated as 10AH

So UK model 650 has the highest output of all of them.

Possible fault with your individual alternator?

Re. flat battery in morning have you checked for a parasitic draw ?

I got a Motobatt AGM battery a few years ago I didn't rate it it didn't last as long as the ordinary lead acid battery which I have now returned to, also when the AGM failed it simply just dropped dead no fade warning or anything.

From 2004 the alp (which mine is) runs with lights on permanently I don't have any electrical accessories but the bike hardly ever runs at high rev's and I've never had a problem with a low charged battery.

Are you sure the grips are working correctly or maybe drawing too much current for some reason.

Are all the cable connections clean and secure.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
i think part of the problem is riding in london is all stop start and the revs hardly get above 4,000

it's an early transalp 650, the headlight is not permanently on

i am pretty sure the grips are working correctly and when the bike is off there is no power draw. this problem only occurs in the cold months when i using the heated grips
 

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Does the packaging or manufacturer data list the current draw or output wattage of the grips? It sounds a bit surprising that the grips alone could account for 300 Watts or more of the alternator output. That would be like holding a 150W bulb in each hand: do they really produce that much heat? (I ask because I don't have any.:()
 

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Just googled them and the specs suggest a maximum draw of 2 Amps per grip (on full), so about 28-30 Watts per grip, or 60 Watts total draw. That's about 20% of the alternator's output. So with a good battery and a functioning alternator, there's no way the grips should drain the battery, even if they are permanently on full output, unless the alternator's output is already mostly used up on other loads (lights, etc). Even then, a headlight is 60W, a tail light 5W, gauge lights maybe 20W or so total, say 100W all up, plus occasional indicators and brake lights. Add the 60W for the grips and perhaps 200W average for all lights etc, and you are still well below the alternator's output. But I'm not sure what the ignition circuit draws for the cdi/coil etc; I don't have a manual to hand.

Your voltage readings are with the lights and grips on; what are the readings with just the grips on? Try running the engine with all loads off, then monitor the voltage while switching each load on, one at a time.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
here are the figures, measured with a multimeter, direct across the battery terminals

i started with a fully charged battery

with engine off and nothing on - 12.8
at tickover (1,200 rpm), and nothing on - 12.7
at 4,000 rpm with nothing on - 13.9

at 1,200 rpm with grips on any setting 12.4
at 4,000 rpm with grips on any setting 13.8

at 1,200 rpm with grips on any setting, and headlight on dip 12.1
at 4,000 rpm with grips on any setting, and headlight on dip 12.8

actually I have just realised the headlight bulb fitted is a 'night breaker' stronger one, would this cause an issue?
 

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I would be looking at the regulator rectifier before the alternator as their known to play up. start with all the plugs and sockets they have a tendency to melt. you can check youtube for videos for how to test
The resistance between the yellow wires on the stator should be about the same 0.1 to 1.0 ohms
The photos are from the manual bear in mind the battery voltages are shown for the standard battery and you cant be sure how accurate your multimeter is unless you test it against others

IMG_8544.jpg

IMG_8543.jpg

IMG_8542.jpg
 

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I'm with Fred on this one, check the reg/rec output carefully. It looks to me like the charging voltage is a bit low; your meter shows 13.9, 13.8 and 12.8 at 4,000rpm, depending on what loads are switched on. The manual shows 14 to 15V as the correct output; I've found 14.2V is a very common figure for lead-acid systems. The manual's figures are quoted at 5,000rpm; I don't expect it to make a significant difference, but any chance you could repeat the tests at 5,000rpm, just to be sure?

Also, as Fred says, see if you can check your meter against a known voltage; no point chasing a duff reading.

If you suspect the reg/rec, try cleaning the contacts thoroughly first, then take your voltage readings at various stages along the charging circuit; this should tell you if you are dropping volts anywhere (ie, high resistance somewhere). If having done that, you find the voltage at the reg/rec output connections is still below 14V at 5,000 rpm, it would suggest the reg/rec is duff. It wouldn't be the first one!

Incidentally, it's probably worth checking the alternator coil resistance while you have the contacts apart for cleaning. It's unlikely to be the culprit but it's worth eliminating the possibility. I think it's unlikely to be the alternator being overloaded; the 650 has the highest alternator output of all the models listed.

At a guess, I'd say that 80% of electrical faults I've traced on bikes (and cars, probably) start off as dodgy connections, often from corrosion, causing high resistance, voltage drop and finally component failure. There's no point chasing complex faults if the connections aren't spot on. I know it's boring and mundane, but if it isolates or fixes the fault, who cares...

Good luck:thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
well, i've checked and cleaned all the connections to the battery/main fuse/relay/regulator, changed the bulb for a standard strength one...and the readings are still the same

i think the alternator only gives the full amount of power at 5,000 rpm, and i hardly ever get that high in the kind of riding i do
 

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Discussion Starter #13
update....

i found the connector between the alternator/stator (three yellow wires) and the rectifier looked like this! so i chopped it out and the voltage readings are now higher

before.jpg
 

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update....

i found the connector between the alternator/stator (three yellow wires) and the rectifier looked like this! so i chopped it out and the voltage readings are now higher

View attachment 138835
Standard Africa Twin and Transalp problem. i replaced my reg/rec with a MOSFET one as the original one couldn't put out enough with the lights on but was holding its own with the lights off. Glad your getting to the bottom of it :thumbup:
 
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