Your battery provides the charge to the starter solenoid to start your engine. Once your engine starts, the alternator replaces your battery as the source of electrical power for your car. Your alternator will also recharge your battery to keep it at full power. If your alternator starts to fail, it impacts all of your car’s electrical components. As your Toyota dealer, we are here to help you when you need an alternator repair.
Flickering Interior Lights
Flickering lights mean that there’s a problem with your alternator. The flickering is a sign that the electrical supply to the lights is fluctuating. A weakening alternator can’t supply enough electricity to meet all your car’s demands. As the alternator tries and fails to supply enough power and this will cause the lights to flicker.
Wires snake through your engine and connect the alternator to all your car’s electrical devices. Despite their protective coating, the wires can suffer damage. Damaged wiring provides resistance that will block the flow of electricity. The alternator will continue to supply power through the damaged wiring and this will cause the wires to heat up.
Your battery uses a strong electrical charge to start your engine. A good alternator will easily recharge the battery while you drive. When your alternator starts to fail, it won’t provide enough power to fully charge the battery. An insufficiently-charged battery won’t be able to start your engine immediately. If it takes several attempts to crank your engine, you may have an alternator problem.
Dim and Bright Headlights
If your headlights are dim and then suddenly become too bright, you could have an alternator problem. The dim lights mean that a weak alternator has too many demands on its limited power. The lights are supplied with just enough electricity to work. When the demands on the alternator are reduced, your headlights will suddenly blaze brighter than they should. This fluctuating power will also cause your bulbs to blow.
Your spark plugs ignite the fuel-air mix in the combustion chamber. The series of controlled explosions that follow allow your car to move. If your car randomly starts to stall, this could be a sign your alternator is failing. A dying alternator may not have enough power to supply even critical systems like the spark plugs.
Battery Warning Light
A working alternator provides 13.5 to 14 volts. This power output will drop if your alternator starts to fail. Sensors are attached to vital components in your engine to monitor them for any unusual changes. The sensors will detect the reduced power output from the alternator. The reduced electricity supply will cause the warning light to come on.
A damaged alternator always gives signs that it’s failing. If your alternator doesn’t seem to be working properly, call our service department ASAP at Mike Kelly Toyota of Uniontown. Our highly-trained technicians will find and fix the problem.
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