Q: Charging System Not Working (Alternator is not kicking in)

asked by on January 14, 2017

While driving home this past Tuesday I noticed the Instrument Cluster gauges were not working and they had worked the prior day. Also it seemed the overdrive was not kicking in either. As I was driving home I noticed the the lights in the dash board were dimming out as if the car losing power. Five minutes after I noticed the lights dimming out the car died on me. I had it towed suspect it was the alternator and since it was under warranty I received another one and had the batter charged. I installed everything back on the car the charging system is still not kicking to charge the battery, also the gauges are still not working. It seems to be that there is something missing in the charging cycle. I know the clusters are somehow tied in to the charging system. All the lights in the cluster work good, there were no warning lights that came on.

The car had been running fine before this.

Today I am going to check the relays to make sure they are good.

Thanks,

For your help

My car has 150000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Battery will not hold a charge Inspection $79.99 - $89.99 Get a Quote

The battery should be load tested by a professional. Load testing can only be reliably performed on a fully charged battery. If the battery passes a load test, you have to be sure it is NOT a marginal pass in which case you should install a new battery to reduce diagnostic headaches. Batteries are a VERY important component in a car’s electrical system so the condition of the battery is a threshold issue in your circumstance. Check the integrity of all electrical connections including grounds to the frame in the charging circuit. Even a tiny bit of added resistance will cause enough of a voltage drop that systems just won’t work right. The output of the alternator has to be tested at the battery posts. If the charging output is out of spec. (typically lower than 14.5 volts, but your Factory Service Manual is the authority) then the charging circuit is simply traced until the fault is found and repaired. Again, it could just simply be a high resistance (faulty) connection. If you desire that a certified mechanic resolve this promptly, please simply request a battery/charging system diagnostic and the responding mechanic will get the problem diagnosed and repaired for you. Please let us know if you have further concerns or questions as we are always here to help you.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

What others are asking

Jerking while accelerating now it won't start had to get tow home car felt as if it was rolling

Based upon the symptoms you are describing, it sounds like you may have a faulty camshaft position sensor. The camshaft position sensor is a magnetic sensor that monitors camshaft speed to regulate ignition timing and fuel injection timing. It gathers...

Can't find location of my canister purge valve

Hey there, thanks for writing in. The canister purge valve is located underneath the throttle body near the front of the motor. If you are unsure how to proceed with the code, a certified pro from YourMechanic can come to...

2007 Nissan Altima motor mounts are new the motor vibrates a lot went the car is in drive with the ac on went I turn the ac off it

Hi there. It is possible that you have a vacuum leak or perhaps the transmission mounts are loose, as usually these symptoms are common with worn out motor mounts. When the AC is activated, it does create additional drag on...

How to check if your altinator alternator is out?

You are most likely driving on the alternator to get there. The battery and alternator can only be examined with a tester device. Do not try and disconnect the battery cable while it is running or you will damage the...

Catalyst system efficiency

Hi. There are a few things to check out when receiving this code as it doesn't always mean the catalytic converter is going bad. The car has multiple oxygen sensors that test how efficient the converter is performing. If the...

Won't start. Just cranks, catches, and dies

Hello there, a few different faults will cause your 2001 Pontiac Grand Am to start and then die. Replacing the battery was a good start, as it can cause this type of issues. Other possible faults include the MAF sensor,...

Car stalling while in park or drive. It's not the battery.

While the battery itself may be in good condition, disconnecting or replacing the battery actually can cause your Chrysler 300 to stall out at a low idle, or instead idle too high. The reason for these issues is that the...

OBD2 error

You should be able to check the vehicle owners manual for the location of the fuse that will power the diagnostic port. The fuse is not always the same as the accessory or cigarette lighter socket. If you would like...

No power on purple wire in start position....new starter..runs if i jump relay

Hello. If there is no ground getting to the starter relay then the computer is not energizing it. Typically when this occurs it is due to the computer not receiving a signal from the ignition switch or from the transmission...

Related articles

2012 Nissan Sentra vs. 2012 Nissan Altima: Which One Should I Buy?
When you consider the Nissan Sentra versus the Nissan Altima, you need to realize that you’re crossing between two different classes of vehicle: the Altima is a mid-size sedan while the Sentra is a compact sedan. The differences between the...
All About Car Battery Chargers
Everyone Everyone has experienced a dead car battery from time to time. It’s common occurance, especially in winter, when batteries have to work even harder to get you to where you want to go. Fortunately, there’s a solution. A portable...
A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 Nissan Altima Hybrid
The The Nissan Altima is already a favorite among mid-sized sedans, but it gained even more points with a lot of car buyers with the option to buy a 2012 Nissan Altima Hybrid. Though the four-cylinder Nissan Altima was already...