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What Causes the Battery Light on the Dashboard to Turn On?

Problems with your vehicle’s battery or alternator will cause the battery light to turn on. In this blog post, we are going to talk about alternator trouble. The average lifespan of an alternator is seven to 10 years. If you drive an older automobile, Automobile Diagnostics advises that your alternator may be going bad if the battery light has come on or you notice any of the other following problems.

Burning Rubber/Wire Smells

The alternator generates voltage up to 14 volts. When it starts to go bad, it works too hard to generate voltage and this overloads your vehicle’s electrical system. Consequently, you may smell burning rubber or burning wire smells coming from the engine because the electrical wiring is overheating.

Dead Battery/Hard Starts

The alternator keeps the battery charged as it discharges. As such, if you jump-start a dead battery and it does not maintain the charge, this is a sign that the alternator is going bad. You may end up with some morning before the battery dies completely. It may become difficult to get your automobile started.

Dim and/or Flickering Lights

Dim and flickering lights are also a sign that the alternator is struggling to produce electricity. In some cases, your lights may become overly bright before they dim. Because the alternator produces power for the exterior and interior lights, they are directly affected by a malfunctioning alternator.

Frequent Engine Stalls

The spark plugs are affected, as well. The alternator powers them so they can fire in the correct order. If your engine is stalling frequently and the spark plugs do not need to be replaced, it’s possible that the alternator is not providing enough power to them for them to do their job.

Growling or Whining Sounds

Growling sounds coming from the engine are an indication that the alternator’s internal mechanisms are grinding against each other. Whining sounds are an indication that the alternator belt is too loose. Either way, this can directly affect the alternator’s ability to produce power.

Malfunctioning Accessories

Finally, if your vehicle’s accessories are malfunctioning or are slow, this, too, points to a problem with the alternator. As an example, your power windows may slow down when you open and close them. You may also have problems with things such as your radio and navigation system.

Automobile Diagnostics in Columbus, IN, can help. Call us today if your car is experiencing any of the problems listed above. We can test the alternator and replace it if necessary.

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