- Mar 10, 2022
Ok, so to test current output of the alternator I need to rev the engine up to 1500-2000 rpm, turn a/c fan on high, coldest a/c setting to run compressor at max, turn radio on, and shine my brights (to simulate the maximum load the alternator is already powering) and clamp a DC amp clamp around the positive lead coming out of the alternator. Is this correct? I'm pretty sure it is.Its not just the starter battery its all the loads that run off the chassis alternator.
SO, I don't have a dc amp clamp (or dc amp meter of any kind). I don't want to have to spend the $100-$200 to buy one to measure DC current one time (maybe I'll want one later when I fool with building a bigger system, but that's on down the line). SO, I figure I can borrow one, it's going to take less than 5 minutes to get this reading and move on. Not so easy. I have talked to: the HVAC dude down the road (had a clamp, it reads AC amperage), a classic car tinkerer in my neighborhood (no), auto part stores that loans tools and do free battery tests and all that jazz (no, they can measure voltage), a small engine repair shop (no), I've only talked to one electrician (no, and really they're trying to land jobs, not fool with some weird request from a guy they don't know). I have learned: ok, this is a special piece of equipment. I know this is long-winded and anyone reading this probably thinks I'm crazy. I already know I'm a nut, but today I think I got a little nuttier! I just want to express my steadfast effort and diligence to do what was advised by the advisors and tell y'all about my little adventure seeking out the elusive "DC amp clamp".