Led light effecting voltage - Steve Saunders Goldwing Forums

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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 06:03 AM Thread Starter
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Hello all, last night I replaced the halogen bulb in my headlight with an led. This morning on the way to work I noticed my voltage guage was higher then normal. It usually sits just above 14 when riding but today it was at 15, should I switch the bulbs back? Will this damage my battery or charging system?
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 06:30 AM
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That voltage is a little high, and the reduced draw from the LED is putting more load on the factory shunt regulator. Added heat in the regulator could cause failure and 15v is a little high for the battery too.

LEDs are nice to have, I'd look at upgrading the rectifier and regulator (separate units on a GL1000 as I recall) to one of the new MOSFET Series type Rec/Reg combo units out there now.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 06:42 AM
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Before you do anything else make sure your voltage meter is accurate. If you are using the original meter on the bike chances are good it is off a volt or two.

Tom

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by dingdong View Post
Before you do anything else make sure your voltage meter is accurate. If you are using the original meter on the bike chances are good it is off a volt or two.
ditto,

verify this with a DVM....
panel meters are only indicative of a trend.

~ John


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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 09:42 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by dingdong View Post
Before you do anything else make sure your voltage meter is accurate. If you are using the original meter on the bike chances are good it is off a volt or two.
ditto,

verify this with a DVM....
panel meters are only indicative of a trend.
Thanks, I'll check, should I just check the voltage at the battery with the engine at 3k rpm?
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 11:44 AM
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3-5K. Anywhere in there is fine. Just hold it steady and check the voltage at the battery. Compare to the dash gauge to get an idea how far off it is. I'd bet your gauge is a full volt off. Like John said, the gauge is more to show trends than exact measurements. I put a cigarette lighter DVM in my fairing pocket to give me a much more accurate check.

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 02:45 PM
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on my 1800, I wired the panel voltmeter DIRECT TO BATTERY POSTS.....

But, that comes with dire consequences, because if a Battery Tender is not always hooked up, it will run the battery down flat in about 3 weeks time....

I am a Battery Tender freak guy, and I have them on everything I own that sets more than 2 or 3 days between use. Even the lawn tractor, especially the lawn tractor as it sets for 3 or 4 weeks in between use... those little cheap ass batteries for those things don't like to linger below 13.6 volts.

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-16-2019, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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3-5K. Anywhere in there is fine. Just hold it steady and check the voltage at the battery. Compare to the dash gauge to get an idea how far off it is. I'd bet your gauge is a full volt off. Like John said, the gauge is more to show trends than exact measurements. I put a cigarette lighter DVM in my fairing pocket to give me a much more accurate check.
So I checked the battery with my DVM and it was showing around 15.9 to 15.6 at the battery, the book says the regulator should kick it at 14-15 volts, also it gets pretty damn hot! is the regulator going bad? I've put over 2000 miles on it so far with it no issues, I never thought to check until I put the led headlight in, I put the halogen bulb back in also to see if that helps
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-16-2019, 02:29 PM
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Ohm's Law is at play here. Ohm's Law states: resistance of the circuit is equal to the voltage divided by amperage, or R=V/A. The LED is lower wattage than a Halogen by about 1/3. Reducing the wattage in the circuit is the same as lowering the resistance. In your GL1000, the current (watts or volt times amperage) is constant. Lower the resistance, current is constant then the voltage must go up to keep the formula balanced... or so Ohm says. The only reason to have the LED is if you like it. If you want to keep it I would suggest a modern voltage regulator such as Rick's MOS FET regulator. Above 14 volts will cause the battery to boil off faster. You will need to keep a closer eye on the battery electrolyte level until this gets sorted out.

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-16-2019, 02:58 PM Thread Starter
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Ohm's Law is at play here. Ohm's Law states: resistance of the circuit is equal to the voltage divided by amperage, or R=V/A. The LED is lower wattage than a Halogen by about 1/3. Reducing the wattage in the circuit is the same as lowering the resistance. In your GL1000, the current (watts or volt times amperage) is constant. Lower the resistance, current is constant then the voltage must go up to keep the formula balanced... or so Ohm says. The only reason to have the LED is if you like it. If you want to keep it I would suggest a modern voltage regulator such as Rick's MOS FET regulator. Above 14 volts will cause the battery to boil off faster. You will need to keep a closer eye on the battery electrolyte level until this gets sorted out.
Thanks! Do you think as long as I don't let the battery run dry it should be ok? Also do you know if that Ricks MOSFET regulator is an exact replacement without having to do any wiring?
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