Re: Testing Points/Condenser
The test light will tell you if the points are making and breaking contact. It will not tell you if the condenser is good or not. A capacitance checking device of one kind or another is required to find if the capacitor is open, shorted or has lost capacitance. It's usually much less expensive to simply replace the capacitor than to have a dedicated meter for this purpose. All that being said if you have a meter that is internally powered and capable of testing ohms resistance it can be used to give an idea of the capacitors condition. Set the meter to a mid scale setting and, with the capacitor resting on a wood or other insulating surface, touch the wire to the capacitor with one meter lead and the body with the other. Hold the contact for a couple of seconds then revers them. The meter should rise sharply and then return to zero. This indicates an ability of the capacitor to accept a charge, hold it, and then reverse polarity when the leads are switched.
Not a sure check but an indicator the capacitor is functioning at least to some extent.
I have been having good luck using an off the shelf capacitor from Car Quest auto parts that is a direct replacement for Kohler part #230722. Car Quest #7-01338. My cost is around $4.00 as I recall. Been using this same one for some time on various small engines. When in doubt I just put a new one on the engine.
I just re-read the original post. To test the points with a multi-meter simply unhook the wires to the points and put one lead on the post where the coil and condenser hooked up and the other to the block. With the meter set on "Ohms" at a low setting turn the engine over. When the points open there should be maximum, infinity, resistance. With the points closed you should read zero resistance.
Somehow I construed you were working with only a test light.
Last edited by Tencubed; 05-29-2010 at 08:18 PM.