Why Is the Battery Light on My Dashboard On?

The battery light turned on on your dashboard because there is a problem with your vehicle’s electrical system. The problem could be with the battery itself or the alternator. Both of these auto parts have just about the same signs that they are going bad. Ideal Automotive is going to list these signs below.

Accessory Malfunction

The alternator powers your vehicle’s accessories. If it is going bad, you will notice that they will begin to malfunction. For example, your GPS may not work correctly or you may find it impossible to adjust your power seats. Another sign that the alternator is going bad is issues with your vehicle’s entertainment system or the power windows.

Burning Rubber Smell

If you smell burning rubber, this could be a sign that your alternator belt is too loose. The alternator belt is what helps the alternator generate voltage so that it can keep the battery charged and the accessories operating the way they should be. If you smell burning wires, this indicates the possibility of an electrical fire in your automobile. Pull over immediately and call for help.

Dead Battery

If the battery is dead and it is relatively new, the problem may actually lie with the alternator. The alternator is what keeps the battery charged, so if it is dying, the battery will die. If your battery is three years or older, it’s possible that the dead battery is the battery itself.

Dim Lights

Both a dying battery and alternator will cause your vehicle’s headlights, taillights, and interior lights to dim. They may also flicker or become too bright for a while before they go dim again. This can be a sign that your battery is running out of juice and needs to be replaced or that the alternator is dying and not powering the battery while you are driving your car.

Frequent Stalling

If your vehicle stalls frequently, especially after you get it started, the alternator may not be powering the spark plugs. If the spark plugs are not being powered, they will misfire and your vehicle will stall. Some people think that the problem lies in the spark plugs when it’s actually the alternator that is causing the problem.

Grinding/Whining Noises

Grinding or whining noises coming from underneath the hood can point to the alternator’s internal mechanisms and the alternator belt, respectively. You should never hear the alternator grind or the alternator belt whine. If you do, there’s a problem.

Hard Starts

Finally, both a dying battery and alternator will make it difficult for your vehicle to get started. It may take several times to get the engine running. This is a precursor to being unable to start your automobile at all.

Ideal Automotive in Blaine, MN, would be happy to test both your alternator and battery to make sure they are both okay. Call us today to schedule an appointment.

Photo by kb group via Canva Pro

Accessibility Toolbar