Your alternator makes electricity to start and run your engine and all the electrical systems in your vehicle. That’s everything from the on-board computers to the turn signals. And of course, there is the entertainment system, seat heaters, power windows, and everything you plug into the power outlets. After your alternator makes enough electricity to do all that, it recharges your battery with what’s left over.
When you constantly have a low or dead battery, the alternator is usually a prime suspect. However, the alternator is just one component of the starting/charging system and a problem with any of the other components could be the actual cause.
In addition to the alternator, the charging/starting system includes the battery, starter, serpentine belt system, and all the electrical cables that connect them. Your technician has a systematic process of testing components and connections to get to the source of your problem.
The initial symptoms determine where to begin the diagnostic process and he follows the procedure until he tracks down the culprit.
For example, diagnostic tests could reveal that the alternator is not generating enough electricity to keep the battery charged. Is the alternator bad? Not necessarily. A worn serpentine belt tensioner could be allowing the belt that spins the alternator to slip. So, the perfectly good alternator is not spinning at the proper speed. The solution is replacing the serpentine belt system – not the alternator.
The good news is that our highly trained technicians can properly diagnose all your vehicle problems and make the necessary repairs to get you back on the road.
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Falmouth Motorcar, Inc.