Question: What Keeps Making My Alternator Go Bad?

Do alternators fail suddenly?

When your alternator begins to fail it can cause a variety of different electrical problems in your car, and eventually cause a breakdown.

Alternators can go bad suddenly, or slowly over time.

If your alternator is slowly going bad over time there are some warning signs you can look out for..

Can you jumpstart a car with a bad alternator?

Fortunately, it is possible to jumpstart your vehicle with a bad alternator so that you can get it back on the road and drive it to the nearest auto shop. The vehicle only needs enough electricity to power its onboard computer (engine control unit) and fuel injectors.

Will AutoZone change alternator?

No, they don’t replace them for you. However, if you need yours tested, and can remove it yourself and bring it in, they will test it. Depending on the vehicle, changing the alternator may be pretty quick and simple.

What kind of noise does a bad alternator make?

Alternator Whining Noise A common sound made by failing alternators is a very high pitched whining noise that you’ll hear when the engine is running. When the RMPs increase, such as when you accelerate, you’ll hear the noise get higher in pitch as the pulley spins faster.

Can a bad alternator cause engine to shake?

Car Shakes While Driving The alternator provides power to cause a spark. … This can cause the engine to shake while driving or may even be challenging to start. The vehicle may be running on the battery only if belts are broken or if the alternator has failed.

How long will a new battery last with a bad alternator?

A 12 volt battery in most cars will run about 30 minutes to 1 hour without lights or air conditioner, since many components will run than old cars before. Starting a car takes a lot of power. You should buy a battery with more power or fix your alternator.

What happens if voltage regulator fails?

A damaged or failed voltage regulator can rapidly diminish the alternator’s ability to cycle power from the battery. This may cause the vehicle to experience dimming or pulsating external systems, such as headlights and dashboard elements.

Can a bad ground cause alternator failure?

Poor ground connections are an often-overlooked cause of low charging output and alternator failure. Check for voltage drops at the positive and negative battery cable connections, the alternator BAT+ power connection and the engine ground strap(s). Voltage drops on the negative side can cause overcharging.

What keeps killing my alternator?

Probably a short circuit in the charging system or a bad earth from the engine block to the negative terminal of the battery, so make sure that it’s a bad earth that may be killing them before fitting another alternator !

How often do alternators go bad?

about seven yearsGunning says an alternator typically lasts about seven years, or about 100,000 to 150,000 miles, adds Waits. Some mechanics, though, say they typically see alternators last about 80,000 miles.

How do you know if your alternator has gone bad?

6 Symptoms of a Failing AlternatorThe indicator light. … Headlights are dim or flickering. … Other electrical failures. … Strange noises. … Car stalls or has difficulty starting. … Battery dies.

Can a bad alternator destroy a new battery?

If an alternator goes bad, it certainly can kill a battery. Car batteries don’t like being run all the way down. … If the alternator was ailing for a while, the battery may have been low for a long time, which also isn’t good for a battery. Fully charge the old battery and have it load-tested.

How long can I drive with a bad alternator?

Starting with a fully charged battery you will probably get 100 Miles before it wears down too far. It also depends greatly on not running headlights or running lights. If you have a car that always runs with the headlights on, and if your battery is several years old, 50 miles might be a better estimate.

What happens when an alternator goes out while driving?

If the problem is a bad alternator, your car will slowly lose power. You’ll be driving down the road, your lights will dim, and you’ll lose power and die. … Once the alternator stops working, so do all of the electrical systems required to keep a car going. Other problems can also cause a car to not start.

How do I know if my voltage regulator is bad?

Symptoms of a bad voltage regulator may include:High voltage output.Low voltage output, sometimes.No voltage output.Lights dim or flicker.Faulty high-beam headlamp bulbs.Engine working erratically (weak or flickering ignition system)Adding water to the battery frequently.More items…•

Can I drive with a bad voltage regulator?

You might still be able to start the car, but you’ll be missing a lot of information—such as how fast you’re driving, as the speedometer won’t be working. For this reason, it’s best not to drive the car until you get the voltage regulator replaced.

What causes a voltage regulator to go bad?

Other causes for a dead regulator rectifier center on the battery. Ground connections are important for good voltage, and if there is faulty voltage, the regulator rectifier can run hot. Bad grounding, corroded battery connection and poor or loose battery connections will cause faulty voltage.

What can cause an alternator to keep going bad?

Alternators put out alternating current, and the battery needs direct current to charge, so there is a voltage rectifier that converts it, and it can suddenly go bad, too. … Dust and dirt can get into the alternator, and over time cause shorts or wear on the brushes.

How much is the labor to replace an alternator?

So How Much Should an Alternator Replacement Cost? The average time for most alternator replacement is two-to-three hours. That gives you roughly $120- $200 in labor to start.