We all know that our car has a battery, and that our engine uses it. We also know we have to fill up the gas tank to get our car moving, and get where we need to go. But other than the engine, battery and gas tank, many of us aren’t aware of very many specific parts our cars need to get out on the road every day. If you think you might have an issue with your alternator, or aren’t even sure what the warning signs are, we are here to help. Check out these five warning signs for a dying alternator.
5 Ways to Tell Your Alternator is Dying
Most of the newer vehicles on the road have a dashboard warning light that will show up when the alternator is acting up. Some may say ALT and some may say GEN, but the light will usually only come on when you are using multiple electrical components at the same time.
Your car battery is not made to last forever, but if your alternator is not replenishing the power that it uses, you’ll go to start your car to hear it hesitate or not start at all. To find out whether it’s the battery or the alternator that’s causing you issues, charge the battery and attempt to start the car. If it’s still a rough start, you’re looking at alternator issues.
Producing electrical current requires a lot of parts that all work inside your alternator to power your vehicle. A grinding or whining noise might indicate a worn out part or belt needs to be replaced. Specifically, worn out bearings cause this sound. If you hear it, get in touch with our service experts to have us take a look!
Burning Rubber Smell
The alternator works with a variety of belts inside your engine, and if a belt is not turning the way it should, the friction will cause a burning smell. If you catch a smell similar to an electrical fire, you might need to replace or tighten a belt. Have then evaluated by our service team to ensure your vehicle is safe to drive.
Your alternator runs all the electrical components in your vehicle, including your headlights and dashboard lights. If either of those are beginning to dim, it’s an important indicator that you’ve got an alternator issue. Other parts like power seats and windows might also experience slower operation because of alternator issues.