Originally Posted by Scuter83
So I took my '74 CJ5 with the 258 offroading about 1.5 months ago. In doing so, I sort of sank it in a puddle deep enough that the water pooled up in the cab. I got pulled out, and the Jeep wouldn't start.
One LARGE red flag here is when people sink and drown out the ignition,
They usually leave the key switch in the 'RUN' position.
That overheats the ignition coil and module with your Prestolite ignition system and can damage the coil/module.
The REASON you drowned out in the first place is usually you got water/mud on top of the ignition coil.
Water/Mud will short out the ignition coil VERY QUICKLY, so putting a boot over the top of the coil and filling it with Dielectric grease to keep water/mud off the terminals is ALWAYS a good idea.
The REASON you drowned out the ignition is often water in the distributor cap.
This usually isn't the major reason (Ignition coil usually is) but moisture in an non vented/non-sealed distributor cap CAN cause the spark energy to jump around and not fire the correct spark plug,
And the engine will die.
By the time you remove the cap, spray it out with WD-40, blow it out a little,
The terminals on the COIL have dried off enough to function again,
And you ASSUME the WD-40 in the cap is what allowed the engine to fire again...
Can EASILY be a combination of both water in the cap, and water/mud on the coil, so clean BOTH while you are at it!
I got pulled to the parking lot and started looking things over.
Humiliating to be pulled any where with the engine not running...
If it's running and you are just hung up and need a yank,
Or if you broke something it's not too bad,
But being towed because your 'Junk' won't run, that's the biggest humiliation for me!
I unplugged the ignition module on the passenger fender (4 wire connector) and water came out.
So I blew all the water out and did the same on the alternator. After that , the jeep fired up and got me home.
Pretty good procedure, but next time remember to spray the top of the coil off around the low voltage connectors with WD-40.
I took it out yesterday after finally fixing exhaust manifold issues,
The list of 'Needed Fixes' never shortens, just changes as you add things when other things drop off as you fix them...
And noticed the voltage was showing 11-12 Volts on my autometer guage where it used to read 14V.
I should now mention, I re-wired this Jeep with an EZ Wire 21 circuit kit and haven't had problems until now.
I started reading on here and found some links to try thinks suggested by Jeephammer.
I pulled the single spade connector on the alternator and flipped it around. Immediately the voltage jumped to 13V.
I drove the Jeep today to my friends place and it was running 14V when I last checked it.
I jumped in it to go home and noticed it read 16V now.
I thought maybe the battery just overcharged somehow because it was undercharged before.
But it still is showing 16V at speed.
At idle, the guage reads 13-13.5V.
I checked across the battery also to confirm a bad guage.
Does this point to my voltage regulator? New alternator?
Sounds like the alternator or regulator is either not getting sufficient 'Ground' or the voltage regulator is on it's way out.
Feel free to run dedicated 'Ground' wire to the alternator frame,
And you CAN change the voltage regulator first,
Then change the alternator after that if the regulator doesn't solve the problem.
I would consider 'Upgrading' to a Delco SI or CS series alternator if I were going to spend money on the charging system.
It's VERY easy to wire up either one, takes the EXTERNAL voltage regulator out of the system, along with a bunch of wiring between regulator and alternator that can cause problems,
And you will have a MUCH MORE STABLE charging system when you are done.
The Prestolite/Motorola alternator you are currently running can be QUITE EXPENSIVE by the time you change both voltage regulator and alternator,
And upgrading to a Delco can save you money in the long run, along with aggravation of trying to keep two separate units and the wiring between up and running.