intermittent battery light, good alternator??? - Drive Accord Honda Forums | radio-pro.ru
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post #1 of 6 Old 02-22-2014, 08:07 AM Thread Starter
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intermittent battery light, good alternator???

I was about to replace my moms alternator in her 03 accord v6 coupe. I took the alternator up to advance and they bench tested it. It passed with flying colors at 14+ volts. Any suggestions?


Current:
2013 Accord LX 6MT Modern Steel Metallic
1970 Dodge Challenger 440 R/T Convertible Plumcrazy Purple

Past Hondas:
1988 Accord LX Misty Beige Metallic R.I.P.(my first car)
1994 Integra RS
2002 Accord LX Coupe 5MT
2005 Civic Si-R.I.P
1992 Accord Sedan EX
2005 RSX-S
1983 Civic 1300 FE 5-speed(restored and sold)
1991 Accord Sedan DX 5MT
2009 TSX Tech 6MT
2007 Element SC
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post #2 of 6 Old 02-22-2014, 09:26 AM
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The alternator is good. You've got a weak battery or a corroded cable somewhere.


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post #3 of 6 Old 02-25-2014, 06:44 PM Thread Starter
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update: I've replaced the battery and both the ground and positive cables with OEM Honda parts from the dealer. My mom drove the car home(about 45 minutes from my house) and no light. she got back in and took it up the street a few miles and the battery light as intermittent. she then drove it to the auto parts store and I guess tested the battery voltage and it was 12.2 volts. The light is still intermittent. At this point, it has a new battery, new positive cable with terminals straight from Honda and the alternator bench tested to be perfect outside of the car. Any suggestions?

Current:
2013 Accord LX 6MT Modern Steel Metallic
1970 Dodge Challenger 440 R/T Convertible Plumcrazy Purple

Past Hondas:
1988 Accord LX Misty Beige Metallic R.I.P.(my first car)
1994 Integra RS
2002 Accord LX Coupe 5MT
2005 Civic Si-R.I.P
1992 Accord Sedan EX
2005 RSX-S
1983 Civic 1300 FE 5-speed(restored and sold)
1991 Accord Sedan DX 5MT
2009 TSX Tech 6MT
2007 Element SC
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post #4 of 6 Old 02-25-2014, 07:54 PM
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With this new info, I am beginning to suspect the alternator. Eric The Car Guy has an excellent video on testing the battery/alternator.

I suspect this because I have never "bench tested" an alternator. I have usually measured voltage while it is installed in the car.

I know when alternators start to go, they can read good for a time, then read bad for a period of time. Perhaps the brushes are starting to go....

Any chance you can go back to a Pep Boys/Advance/Autozone and test the alternator while it is running? Or if you have a voltmeter, test it yourself using Eric The Car Guy video?

Just to confirm: YOU replaced these items so they are tightly connected, right? Just want to make sure you didn't "have it done". You seem to wrench, so I am guessing you did the work.

2005 Accord EX-L
2-door Coupe
PZEV emission vehicle (!)
4-cylinder, 5-speed Automatic Transmission
16.5 pound Acura RSX 16 inch wheels & 215/55R 16 Continental Extreme Contact DWS06 tires
145k miles (as of Jan '18)
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post #5 of 6 Old 02-26-2014, 07:23 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickBlaine View Post
With this new info, I am beginning to suspect the alternator. Eric The Car Guy has an excellent video on testing the battery/alternator.

I suspect this because I have never "bench tested" an alternator. I have usually measured voltage while it is installed in the car.

I know when alternators start to go, they can read good for a time, then read bad for a period of time. Perhaps the brushes are starting to go....

Any chance you can go back to a Pep Boys/Advance/Autozone and test the alternator while it is running? Or if you have a voltmeter, test it yourself using Eric The Car Guy video?

Just to confirm: YOU replaced these items so they are tightly connected, right? Just want to make sure you didn't "have it done". You seem to wrench, so I am guessing you did the work.

Yeah, i did the work. The machine they test the alternator with is a computer, the alternator is secured and a belt hooked up to it. they plugged a factory harness to it(I'm assuming they have several adapter harnesses for most vehicles) and they ran the alternator on the computer. They said it tested fine, though we've all experienced the auto parts store "pro" that can be a bit of a novice.

I'm not afraid to admit that electronics are not my strong hold with cars...

any info would be helpful. Is there a voltage regulator? issue with the ECU?

Current:
2013 Accord LX 6MT Modern Steel Metallic
1970 Dodge Challenger 440 R/T Convertible Plumcrazy Purple

Past Hondas:
1988 Accord LX Misty Beige Metallic R.I.P.(my first car)
1994 Integra RS
2002 Accord LX Coupe 5MT
2005 Civic Si-R.I.P
1992 Accord Sedan EX
2005 RSX-S
1983 Civic 1300 FE 5-speed(restored and sold)
1991 Accord Sedan DX 5MT
2009 TSX Tech 6MT
2007 Element SC
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post #6 of 6 Old 02-26-2014, 01:52 PM
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I just when trough this with a Grand Prix took the alternator to a few places for testing The unit I was working on was passing 75% of the tests until I found a shop that specialized in them and would test it manually and the it failed every time.Once it was loaded to the cars specs the volts would drop to 12.9 which was not enough to keep the car running after the battery ran down but put out 14.5 volts until it got to that point.All cars have a tipping point where they will shut down and that tipping point is different from manufacturer to manufacturer and model year to model year so you need someone who knows the required load and voltage for your model year to test it and tell you whether it's good or bad.The machines can be unreliable if It is close to that tipping point.Never trust the scanner type tester either it has to be removed and bench tested manually to get real output as the computerized bench tester runs a generic program,even it they punch in the correct model it's the model year that can be the critical variable and determine a pass or fail on a borderline unit.This is one instance where a knowledgeable person is better than a machine.The guy who tested mine also ran the test three times to be sure and was asked about aftermarket accessories and whether the car had billion watt stereo installed before he did it as they can be alternator killers .
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