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alternator vs. battery charger

This is a discussion on alternator vs. battery charger within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; how does a stock alternator on a -98ss compare to a 12v 10a batter charger from sears? the reason i ...

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    Senior Member ss~zoso~ss's Avatar
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    alternator vs. battery charger

    how does a stock alternator on a -98ss compare to a 12v 10a batter charger from sears?

    the reason i ask is becase my car is coming out of storage on wed, and my batt is dead but i dont feel like leaving it on the charger all night i'd like to know if i'd get by with enough juice to get it started and drive for like a half hour to charge it. woulld driving the car charge the battery back up fully?
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    Senior Member 02z28ls1's Avatar
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    What they tell you when you install a new alternator in a car-recharge the battery first,because the alternator is not a substitute for a charger on a run down battery. The load can blow out the alternator,use the battery charger if you have one. Leave it hooked up overnight,it will take a long time if it's really run down. In answer to your question,yes you can just charge the battery enough to start the car-leave it running for 15-20 minutes at above idle with as little accessories turned on as possible to lessen the load on the alternator. But I'd recommend the charger.

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    Single Malt rbob93's Avatar
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    In addition, you want a nice slow 1 to 2 amp re-charge or you could end up with a cooked battery.
    The slow charge will help dissapate any deposits that have formed on the plates, which will increase your battery life.

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    Go buy a new battery AND a charger.

    If your battery sat for an extended length of time, and it's "old", get a new battery because the old one won't hold a full charge (for very long).

    Before you put your new battery into service, get yourself a "Battery Minder" or "Battery Tender" and charge it up.

    If you don't do that, you will be buying an alternator as well as another battery because the alternator can't operate at full boogie all the time.
    Last edited by TommySS; 03-07-2006 at 02:28 PM.

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    Junior Member 5letr's Avatar
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    If there was no drain on the battery during storage and it is dead now...time for a new battery. If you want to charge it use a charger. Your alternator will NOT charge your battery no matter how long you drive around. It might add a little, but it is not designed to charge a dead battery, but to replenish what was used during startup. I hope this helps.

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    Forever member chaman's Avatar
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    A dead battery can be charged. There is no all inclusive rule that says every dead battery is done for. Charge it properly and then check all its parameters including cranking power, under load etc.... The alternator could be damaged if it tries to charge your battery. Check every component of the charging system and you will save money in the long run.

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    Forever member chaman's Avatar
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    Also these cars WILL drain your battery after long periods of storage.....they are always consuming power for the PCM, clock, etc.... To check for abnormal drains is another story....

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    Senior Member ss~zoso~ss's Avatar
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    yea thats what prob did it, the theft lock, clock, car alarm light etc i put the batt on my charger and it charged up pretty good, i'll let the alternator do the last 2 volts of charging

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    Any battery, whether there's a load on it or not, loses a percentage of its charge over time. Some lose less than others (e.g., Optima), but they all lose some.

    If you leave a battery connected, there is the loss that would occur with the computer/clock/anti-theft/etc in addition to the static loss (meaning it loses its charge more quickly).

    Now, if a battery is fully discharged and it is not a deep cycle battery, you can still bring it back (with a nice SLOW charge), but it will not hold it as long as it once did (experience is a hard lesson). It'll be weakened, but if it's still relatively new you may not notice the difference.

    Good luck.

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    Senior Member 02z28ls1's Avatar
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    Batteries sulphate if left uncharged, or discharged,for months on end. An Optima battery resists this sulphation of the plates,and can go unharmed by this type of neglect. Sulphation can make it impossible to recharge a battery,or at least shorten it's life. A battery tender type or automatic charger(which you may already have) can stave off the sulphation. You're better off disconnecting the terminals if you are going to store the car for long periods of time also. I would say from the sounds of it-the battery has been damaged already,or at best,it won't last as long as it could have.

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