The alternator is responsible for supplying energy to your engine’s battery to ensure it stays charged. Because it has such a crucial job, you’ll quickly notice if something’s gone wrong with this part. Identifying the problem is the first step in getting yours back in working order, so look out for signs of the following issues.
What Can Cause a Malfunctioning Alternator?
1. Worn Belt
Alternators work by creating an electrical current that flows back and forth, and this current is produced by several components spinning. The serpentine belt is essential to keeping these pieces in motion.
If your belt is worn out, loose, or slipping off of its track, your alternator won’t be able to charge the battery. Worn belts may have chunks missing or shiny spots, and they sometimes make a high-pitched noise when the motor is running.
2. Improper Battery Connections
Even if the internal workings of your alternator are functioning correctly, the power won’t transfer to your battery if the connections aren’t secure. Make sure that the cables are fastened snugly and clean excess dirt and grease off of them. Double-check that none of the cables or terminals have any damage. Also, take a look at the connections to the voltage regulator, which is the part that turns the alternator on and off.
3. Overcharging, Undercharging, or Not Charging the Battery
If the battery isn’t being charged enough, or if it’s being charged too much, your vehicle won’t maintain the proper power level. This will result in noticeable problems like dim lights and malfunctioning temperature regulation systems. You can check the manufacturing details of your vehicle to find out what level the voltage should be at and compare it to the flow of power to the battery.
For help with your alternator, talk to the experts at Eubanks Auto Electric, Inc. in De Kalb, TX. Servicing trucks, tractors, boats, ATVs, and forklifts, they can repair your starter or install a replacement alternator. They also offer winch repair. To learn more about how they can help, visit their website. Call (903) 667-2081 with questions or to arrange an appointment. To stay up-to-date on tips and tricks about engines, follow them on Facebook.