E46Fanatics - View Single Post - Non -m electrical issue possibly voltage regulator
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Old 12-08-2012, 09:52 PM   #10
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Join Date: May 2012
Location: Oregon
Posts: 140
My Ride: M52TU
Originally Posted by Steven747 View Post
12v when the car is off is low? what should it be? for what ive read it seems about right

ill check for loose connections tomorrow but i would imagine there would be more apparent issues. ill look into the autozone battery fursure though
If it's right at 12 V that's actually marginal, somewhere between 25-50% state of charge. You want the battery to read about 12.5-12.6 V. If you drive the car every day, a good battery should be in the ballpark (assuming you have no sources of parasitic drain).

Your 14 V reading when running the car shows that the alternator is generating within spec and has the margin to charge the battery while powering everything (engine spark, all electrical systems, etc.), but what does it read when you have headlights and stereo going as well? If that amp is drawing a lot of juice, the alt might not have enough leeway to keep the battery charged.
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