1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

Western Unimount Killing Voltage

Discussion in 'Western Plows Discussion' started by Dieselplow82, Feb 6, 2015.

  1. Dieselplow82

    Dieselplow82 Member
    Messages: 51

    my western unimount is killing my voltage on my 05 f250..ive replaced alternator and dual batteries twice in a week...everytime I move it, it drops my voltage to under 11v...voltage slowly creeps up after driving for awhile without using plow..but once I raise the plow..back to around 11v we go..what is the problem..bad motor..solenoid..cables..??
     
  2. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,983

    11 is about normal, maybe a tick low.
    Ck your grounds and add as needed
    Replace the stock charging wire will help.
     
  3. Dieselplow82

    Dieselplow82 Member
    Messages: 51

    ive got a buddy who plows with me with the exact same plow and hes always in the mid 13's for voltage the whole time
     
  4. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,983

    Then he's got one heck of an alt.
     
  5. Dieselplow82

    Dieselplow82 Member
    Messages: 51

    I thought about that too but its stock
     
  6. Dogplow Dodge

    Dogplow Dodge PlowSite Veteran
    from NJ
    Messages: 3,013

    My dodge has a consistent voltage of 13.7 v at the battery while the truck is running. My unimount doesnt affect voltage drop during use. The standard 100a alternator has plenty of juice to run the plow, lights and all other accessories. Voltace in my 92 is regulated by the computer aka PCM (if you want to call it that ) and ive never had an issue . your truck should have a similar voltage at the battery of 13.7 while running, otherwise you alternator isnt actually charging. Not running the battery should be a bit over 12v.

    I doubt your plow is causing this.

    disconnect your cables from your plowand run the truck. Find out what your voltage is then. Its most likely that whatever controls your alternator is what's actually the problem. Some alternators have internal regulators others are controlled by the PCM.

    If you suspect that you have a bad ground purchase a couple of cables that have just the eyelets on the end. I use 4 gauge wires that are available at any parts store. 3/8" eyelets fit almost anything. bolt one end of the cable to the chassis frame and the other end to some place on the engine block, preferably where the existing wire runs to the block from the battery. Run a secondary cable from that same location to the back of the alternator or someplace on a mounting bracket of the alternator where you can safely attach the new ground wire. once you have the battery cables connected directly to the engine block and to the frame and to the back of the alternator you will have corrected poor connection of the negative section of the charging system. If you still have an issue whereas the alternator is still not charging at about 13.7 volts then what you need to do is determine whether or not your PCM controls it or you've gotten a bad couple of alternators which is unlikely...... but not impossible.

    the PCM and trucks can be very expensive. You have to try to eliminate all other possibilities before purchasing the PCM. I disconnect and clean every connection under my hood each and every year because those connections get crudded up from the salt in the air and from plowing. If you want to protect those connections once they're cleaned use dielectric grease at the connection and coat each part before reassembling.
     
  7. Dieselplow82

    Dieselplow82 Member
    Messages: 51

    very good point sir..i disconnected everything today and been driving the truck..def not getting 13.8 or higher on the voltmeter...almost seems like the alternator is putting out the voltage its supposed to
     
  8. Dogplow Dodge

    Dogplow Dodge PlowSite Veteran
    from NJ
    Messages: 3,013

    Are you reading from the gauge on the dashboard, or using a multimeter on the battery terminals itself? The instrument cluster gauges are NOTORIOUS for not giving actual readings. A digital multimeter is the only way to determine what your problems are. My gauge is not accurate, although I can see whether or not there is a draw on the system.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/7-function-digital-multimeter-69096.html

    Every box store has them, and they can be invaluable at diagnosing problems.
     
  9. Dogplow Dodge

    Dogplow Dodge PlowSite Veteran
    from NJ
    Messages: 3,013

    If your absolutely sure your batter is now charging, with the cables from the plow disconnected, and if you reconnect them, and get the NO Charge situation again, I would suggest that you replace the electric motor on your Isarmatic pump. If it has gone bad, and the brushes or internals of the motor are worn out, you can get a similar issue, whereas the motor is drawing up too much of the trucks power to turn the motor. You might also get some pretty warm wires to the motor on the pump as well.
     
  10. Dieselplow82

    Dieselplow82 Member
    Messages: 51

    I have a gauge on my diesel tuner for voltage but have also been using a multimeter on the batteries and right off the back of the alternator...I don't have anything drawing power from it now...but even when the plow was disconnected, it took it forever to charge back up
     
  11. Dogplow Dodge

    Dogplow Dodge PlowSite Veteran
    from NJ
    Messages: 3,013

    Correct. It would take a long time. Be careful, as the alternator can burn up due to overly drained batteries.
     
  12. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,983

    Have you tested your batts lately?
    What motor in it?
     
  13. Dieselplow82

    Dieselplow82 Member
    Messages: 51

    Just put brand new batteries in it again...i have the 6.0 powerstroke
     
  14. Dieselplow82

    Dieselplow82 Member
    Messages: 51

    checked voltage this morning after cleaning the ends of all the cables...drivers side battery..14.11v...passenger side..14.15....alternator...14.38v...don't know how long that will last though..ill check again after driving around for a few hours