Five Signs Your Alternator is Dying

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Alternator, Auto Care | ER Autocare

When most drivers experience an electrical problem they immediately blame the battery. We get it. It seems like it would be the most likely culprit right? But the truth is that in some cases the alternator is actually to blame. Either way, you never want to end up stalled in a parking lot or stuck at home because your battery or alternator is dead. But how do you know when your alternator is on the way out?

ALT/GEN Warning

Take a look at your dashboard. You should see a light that is either shaped as a battery or says ALT or GEN. This is the warning light for your electrical system. If it comes on, it is a good idea to have your battery and alternator inspected.

Dimming Lights

Have you ever been driving and noticed that your interior lights, dashboard, or headlights start to dim intermittently? This is due to low voltage coming from your electrical system and is a good sign that your alternator needs to be replaced. In addition to dimming lights, low voltage can also cause your power windows and seats to be less responsive or slower.

Battery Trouble

The battery and the alternator work hand in hand. If your battery is fairly new and has been tested, but is continuously draining, the answer is probably the alternator. This is because the alternator charges and powers the battery.

Strange Sounds

There are multiple parts that spin and work to aid in the production of electrical current coming from your alternator. All that spinning causes them to wear down over time and when they are too worn they will produce a grinding sound. This grinding is especially true of bearings and bushings.

Burning Smell

Belts rely on friction to get the electricity going for your vehicle. When those belts begin to malfunction they will create the smell of burning rubber under your hood. At ER Auto Care, we always advise you to seek help anytime you smell a burning odor under your hood.

If you suspect your alternator or any other part of your vehicle’s electrical system is in trouble, call ER Auto Care in Plain City or Columbus, OH, today to schedule an appointment.

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