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All,
Here is my problem. I have a 76 2+2 and I went to start it and the battery was dead. No biggie, I jump started it, fired up fine, let it warm up completely, drove it about 5 miles and when I got it back to my place, I shut it off and tried to start it again. No good. Battery still dead.
Next day, I was going to drive it about 75 miles to store her for the winter. I jump started her, drove her the 75 miles, no problem at all. I got to my destination, shut her off, and again, she wouldn't turn over unless I jump started her.
I put her on the trickle charger for about an hour and NOW my battery is taking a charge and turns over fine.
What could the problem be??? I doesn't seem to be the battery because it clearly takes and holds a charge. It doesn't seem to be the alternator because I drove her 75 miles on a dead battery. Does the voltage regulator sound like the gremlin here?
Please advise.
 

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I don't know the truth behind this, but someone posted to a previous post that jump starting a dead battery wouldn't necessarily allow the ALTERNATOR to recharge it.

I hope whoever wrote that will repost it, but the gist was that when your battery is dead you should use a CHARGER hooked up to house current at low charge for 12 hours or so. Anything else would result in the problems you noted.

The explanation went along the lines that the ALTERNATOR still requires at least a PARTIAL charge from the battery in order to generate power. Most of this power is used up in the engine and accessories with only a very small amount going to the battery to recharge. That's why with a dead battery it is critical to RECHARGE it first, then proceed with other test.

Anyhow, I'm going off of memory, so I hope someone else will confirm this.

My 2¢
 

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Observe ammeter after cranking. It should go positive to recharge the battery, the amount of charge drained off during cranking. This indicates a somewhat functional alternator. To be sure it's all dialed in you need a decent DC voltmeter. Your voltage should be between 14 and 15 volts with engine above 3k rpm, no major electrical load, and not drop below 13 with highbeams and fan on high. Shouldn't drop below 12 volts with lights on at idle.

Recommend Nissan OEM new voltage regulator $40 and remanufactured alternator $65 if you have continued problems. Or else do a complete alternator upgrade as often posted in the archives. Spare yourself cheap aftermarket parts - nothing but trouble and headache.

Later- Al
 
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