Subaru ff-1/1300/1400/1600/1800/Brat 1970-1984 Repair Guide

Voltage Regulator

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The voltage regulator is a device which controls the output of the alternator. Without this voltage limiting function of the regulator, the excessive output of the alternator could burn out components of the electrical system. In addition, the regulator compensates for seasonal changes in temperature as it affects voltage output.


WARNING
Late models have a solid state regulator built into the alternator. The regulator is non-adjustable and is serviced, when necessary, by replacement.

REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



External Regulator
  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Disengage the multi-wire connector and automatic choke lead (1974 and later models) from the regulator.
  4.  
  5. Remove the two regulator mounting screws and remove the regulator from the fender panel.
  6.  

To install:

  1. Install the new regulator and tighten the mounting screws.
  2.  
  3. Engage the multi-wire connector and choke lead.
  4.  
  5. Connect the negative battery cable.
  6.  

Internal Regulator
  1. Remove the alternator as outlined in this section.
  2.  
  3. Matchmark the alternator case and remove the case fasteners.
  4.  
  5. Separate the two case halves.
  6.  
  7. Loosen the voltage regulator retainers and remove the voltage regulator.
  8.  

To install:

  1. Install the voltage regulator and tighten the fasteners.
  2.  
  3. Engage the two halves of the alternator case together making sure to line up the matchmarks. Tighten the case fasteners.
  4.  
  5. Install the alternator in the vehicle.
  6.  

ADJUSTMENTS




WARNING
Adjustments can be made on external regulators only, internal regulators cannot be adjusted.

Voltage Adjustments

This test should be made after the engine compartment and the regulator have had a chance to cool down. The test should never be performed on a hot engine.



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Fig. Fig. 1 Voltage adjustment test circuit

  1. Make sure all electrical equipment on the car is turned OFF or disconnected.
  2.  
  3. Using an ammeter, a voltmeter, and a resistor rated at 0.25-, connect a test circuit as shown in the illustration.
  4.  
  5. BEFORE STARTING THE ENGINE: Connect a jumper wire from the far terminal of the 0.25- resistor to the negative (-) terminal of the ammeter. See illustration. After the engine is started, disconnect the jumper, but be sure to reconnect it each time the engine is restarted.
  6.  
  7. Turn the engine ON and gradually increase the speed from idle to about 2000 rpm. 2000 engine rpm is equal to about 1200 alternator rpm.
  8.  
  9. The voltage reading shown should compare with that on the alternator and regulator specifications chart, allowing for the temperature around the regulator.
  10.  


WARNING
The ammeter reading should be below 5 amps. Recharge or substitute the battery with a charged one if the reading is not below 5 amps.

If the voltage is not within the specified range, adjust as follows:

  1. Remove the screws and take off the regulator cover.
  2.  
  3. On ff-1 and 1300G models, bend the adjuster tab on the regulator up if the voltage is below specifications or down if the voltage is above specifications.
  4.  
  5. On other models, loosen the locknut and turn the adjusting screw until the voltage falls within specifications.
  6.  
  7. If the voltage cannot be brought within specs, proceed with a mechanical adjustment.
  8.  
  9. If the voltage is now within the required specs: shut off the engine, remove the test equipment, replace the regulator cover and reconnect any electrical system components or accessories you disconnected at the beginning of the test.
  10.  

Charge Relay Adjustment

WARNING
The opening voltage of the charge relay is 8-10 volts at alternator terminal (A). However, the coil on the charge relay operates at half of this voltage (i.e., 4-5 volts).

  1. Remove the regulator from the car.
  2.  
  3. Hook up the test circuit illustrated with a car battery, 0-150- rheostat, voltmeter, heavy duty switch, and a test light.
  4.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2 Charge relay test circuit

  1. Close the switch with the rheostat set at 150- (maximum).
  2.  
  3. Gradually decrease the resistance.
  4.  
  5. When the test light goes out, the voltmeter should read 4-5 volts.
  6.  
  7. If the light doesn't go out at the specified setting, remove the regulator cover and make one of the following adjustments:
  8.  
  9. On ff-1 and 1300G models, bend the charge relay, and turn the adjusting screw until the voltage is within specifications. Tighten the locknut.
  10.  
  11. If the charge relay voltage cannot be brought within specifications, perform the Mechanical Adjustments outlined next.
  12.  
  13. If the charge relay is working properly, put the cover on the regulator and install it in the car.
  14.  

Mechanical Adjustments

WARNING
All mechanical adjustments must be performed with the regulator removed from the car to prevent battery and charging system damage.



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Fig. Fig. 3 Voltage regulator mechanical adjustment points

ff-1 AND 1300G MODELS
  1. Remove the regulator from the car, unfasten the cover securing screws, and remove the cover.
  2.  
  3. Inspect both sets of points. If they are rough or dirty, polish them lightly with #500 or #600 emery paper.
  4.  


WARNING
If the points are so badly damaged that polishing them doesn't help, replace the regulator.

  1. Measure the gaps of the voltage regulator, with a feeler gauge, in the following sequence:
  2.  
    1. Yoke gap: measure the clearance between the armature and the yoke. Adjust, as necessary, by loosening its securing screws and moving the armature. Tighten the screws.
    2.  
    3. Core gap: measure the clearance between the armature and the core of the voltage coil. Adjust the gap by bending the lower contact, as necessary.
    4.  
    5. Point gap: measure the distance between the points. Adjust by bending the upper contact, as necessary.
    6.  

  3. Measure the gaps of the charge relay, with a feeler gauge, in the following sequence:
  4.  
    1. Yoke gap: measure the clearance between the armature and the end of the yoke. Adjust, as necessary, by loosening the armature securing screws and moving the armature if necessary. Tighten the screws.
    2.  
    3. Core gap: measure the clearance between the armature and the center of the core. Adjust by loosening the contact set securing screw and moving the set up or down, by inserting a screwdriver in the hole.
    4.  
    5. Point gap: measure the distance between the points. Adjust by loosening the point securing screw, inserting a screwdriver, and raising or lowering the screwdriver.
    6.  



WARNING
For proper gap specifications, consult the Alternator and Regulator Specifications chart.



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Fig. Fig. 4 Adjusting core gap



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Fig. Fig. 5 Adjusting point gap

  1. After completing the adjustments, replace the cover on the regulator, and install it in the car. Test its operation again, as outlined above. If the voltage still cannot be brought within specifications, replace the regulator. If the voltage is still incorrect, the fault probably lies in the alternator.
  2.  

EXCEPT ff-1 AND 1300G MODELS
  1. Remove the voltage regulator from the car and remove the regulator cover.
  2.  
  3. Inspect both sets of points. If they are rough or dirty, polish them with #500 or #600 emery paper.
  4.  


WARNING
If the points are so badly damaged that polishing them doesn't help, replace the regulator.

  1. Measure and adjust the gaps of both the voltage regulator and the charge relay in the same manner. Use the specifications given in the Alternator and Regulator Specifications chart. Adjust both sets of gaps in the following sequence:
  2.  
    1. Core gap: measure the clearances for both the regulator and charge relay between their armatures and coil cores. Adjust each, as necessary, by loosening the 4mm screw which secures the contact set to the yoke and moving the set up or down. Tighten the screw.
    2.  
    3. Point gap: measure the distances between the points for both the voltage regulator and charge relay. Adjust each, as necessary, by loosening the 3mm screw which secures the upper contact and moving the contact up or down. Tighten the screw.
    4.  



WARNING
It is not necessary to adjust the yoke gap.

  1. Reinstall the regulator in the car and test its operation as outlined above. If the voltage still cannot be brought within specifications, replace the regulator. If the voltage is still incorrect, the fault probably lies in the alternator.
  2.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 6 Alternator and Regulator Specifacations

 
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