5 Signs of a Failing Alternator

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5 Signs of a Failing Alternator

The alternator plays a very important role in many different aspects. The alternator is connected to the belt system on the front of the engine and the spinning of the motor causes the alternator to spin, thus producing electricity. This electricity is used for a variety of functions while the vehicle is turned on, such as operating electrical accessories like power windows and locks and the radio. However it also supplies the electricity necessary to the spark plugs to ensure a proper running engine. Additional electrical power created by the alternator is stored in the battery for use when the car is not on and to get the car started. If it fails you'll run into many problems, including a car that won't start. Pay attention for these signs of upcoming alternator failure so you can have it replaced before it's too late.

Dim headlights

The alternator is what supplies electricity to the headlights while the vehicle is turned on. If the headlight seen dim or flicker on and off while in use it may be caused by a failing alternator that cannot provide the headlights with the proper amount of electrical juice.

Hard starting or stalling

Since the alternator is what provides the electrical power necessary for the spark plugs to ignite the air and fuel mixture your engine uses to run your vehicle may stall or have a hard time starting if the alternator begins to fail. The vehicle may stall while in motion, or while stopped. Hard starting is characterized by excessive engine cranking.

Battery dies

Perhaps one of the most obvious signs of alternator failure is a battery that dies. If the battery dies and you are positive that you did not leave the lights on, a door ajar or leave on any other accessory that may drain power while you are away from the vehicle while it is turned off for some amount of time it is likely due to an alternator that is not producing electrical power.

Electrical failures

The alternator provide electrical power to numerous other systems in the vehicles, as previously mentioned these include power windows and locks, the radio, infotainment systems, power seats and more. If any of the systems, or all of them, seem to no longer work it may be related to a failed alternator. This will soon be followed by a vehicle that won't start.

Dashboard indicator light

If the dashboard indicator light for your alternator comes on, which often just reads ALT or GEN you want to head to an auto repair shop right away to have the issue properly diagnosed. There are many sensors and vehicles that can detect problems that are not noticeable to the human eye. If you're having any sort of electrical trouble you'll want a certified technician to take a peek at the vehicle to diagnose the issue. If you believe your need alternator repair in Santa Clarita or Valencia head to Simply Smog Valencia Auto Performance. Our full service auto repair shop can service your vehicle to restore it's driveability in a timely and affordable manner. Give us a call today at (661) 259-5600 to schedule an appointment for expert auto repair in Santa Clarita.

Simply Smog & Valencia Auto Performance Blog

Written By Brian Corey

Published By MORBiZ

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