car battery question?

so when I turn the key my voltage meter reads 11.7 when I turn the car over it drops to 11.4 volts .outside temp has been 20's - low 50's .once started the voltage goes up to 14.8-15 volts .its a 2012 Chevrolet cruze is this normal for this car

10 Answers

  • 4 weeks ago

    Test your battery voltage *before you try to start the motor. A new fully charged battery should test 12.6 volts. If your battery is the OEM (original equipment manufactures) AC Delco battery that came in the car, have your trusted private mechanic do a *battery load test to see what the reserve amperage is. If your battery is the one that came in your car it's 7 years old and nearing the end if it's useful life. If your battery now tests over 12 volts before you start the engine, that's pretty amazing. If the battery voltage is below 12 volts before you start the car, pretty soon you will be stranded somewhere.

    • nunya4 weeks agoReport

      new battery got in August turn key before ignition 11.8-12.1 outside temp 30-45 at point of ignition drops bout .4 v then immediately quickly goes up to 14.8-15.1

  • M.
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    You turn the key and your car starts?

    That's normal.

    Charging system voltage should be around 14.4 volts.  Your charging system voltage is actually a bit too high.

    Car voltmeters are not highly accurate.

    Maybe your voltmeter is not accurate.

    High charging voltage is caused by the voltage regulator, and will tend to boil out the battery electrolyte (the fluid in the battery).

    Find the date code stamped into the top of the battery, or into the side of the battery near the top.

    Since your car is 7 years old, if your battery is 7 years old, then you have gotten a better than average life from your battery.

    When you first shut off your engine, the battery voltage will be high, but after some time (an hour?) it will drop.  A new/good, fully charged battery will show 12.6 volts with ignition OFF, and all lights OFF (including the interior dome light and engine compartment light).  If your battery is 11.7 volts, it's too low and shows age.

    -General automotive mechanic since 1972

    • M.
      Lv 7
      2 days agoReport

      You need to read the battery voltage when everything is OFF.  If you are using the instrument panel voltmeter, then you can't read the battery voltage with everything off.

      The other useful voltage reading is with the engine IDLING, and the headlights on.  The voltage should be around 14.4

  • 4 weeks ago

    Yes totally normal

  • don r
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    Very low temperature can reduce battery voltage. The reading while running looks fine.

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  • Anonymous
    4 weeks ago

    Get the battery charged and load tested (on a carbon pile tester)  to take out the guessing.  You might need a new one. 

  • 4 weeks ago

    If it starts why do you have a question?

    If it the motor turns over slower then normal and the battery is more then 3 years old I'd put battery in it.

    If the red battery charge warning light has been on you have a bad alternator.

    You can go to Advance Auto and they will test the battery and charging system for free so you don't have to guess.

    Source(s): Mitsubishi Master Tech
  • Bill
    Lv 6
    4 weeks ago

    11.7 volts at20 degrees is acceptable

    when starting dropping to 11.4 volts indicates a good battery condition

    14.5-14.8 volts when the engine is running is correct charging voltage so at 15 volts , you have a voltage regulator problem. Check with a master volt meter in an auto electrical shop to determine the accuracy of your gauge

  • 4 weeks ago

    11.7 volts is weak. This will leave you sit in the near future. Should be 12.6 volts or more. I'll bet it is dropping way lower than 11.4 upon cranking. Your missing the drop. 

  • Pearl
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    maybe you should get a mechanic to check it out

  • 4 weeks ago

    It sounds like your battery is perfect

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