Old Alternator & New Alternator

Well one day you are driving down the road and you see the red light come on your dash that looks like a battery. As you know red lights usually mean stop the car and see what is going on. At this point this more than likely means that your alternator has decided that it does not want to produce the energy to run your vehicles electrical system and replenish your vehicles battery with power. If this happens to you be aware that your vehicle is only running on the power supplied by your battery and it is quickly being drained of power to keep your vehicle running momentarily.

If it is night time and your lights are on your car will stop running much quicker. When your battery voltage gets below 10 volts or so your vehicle will likely stall and will not restart. So if you find yourself in this situation turn off any unnecessary electrical loads such as blower fans, a/c system, radio rear defroster etc. Not to mention get somewhere as soon as you can!

If your alternator failed it could be that it was just worn out, or your battery has been weak for some time and was not giving the alternator the support it needed to sustain the electrical system in your vehicle. So with that said just in case you are not familiar with what an alternator looks like pictured above is the old alternator on the right and the new one is on the left. The old alternator on the right failed with only 45K miles on a 10 year old vehicle. In this case the vehicle was not driven that much the customer went to start their vehicle and smoke was pouring out from under the engine compartment along with a horrible squealing noise! The alternator seized and would not turn and ruined the belt as a result. If need to have your alternator replaced make sure that your battery tests ok, a bad battery will likely ruin your new alternator. Oh yeah it will void the warranty on the new alternator as well!

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