Intermittent Dashboard Battery Light


Old 08-20-08, 06:48 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: NE Conus
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Intermittent Dashboard Battery Light

I have a 1994 Toyota Corrolla, 65+K miles on odometer. Lately, I have noticed that the Battery Icon will come on and then go off, or light faintly while the car is running and also then go off. Sometimes this will be while idling ,or at highway speeds where any change in the speed will have it go out. This does not happen all the time but does occurr and appears to be staying on for longer periods of time especially when the car has been running for awhile.
A little perplexed, could this be a short or possibly the alternator failing? This alternator was a replacement put in 2006 and all belts were checked and are tensioned and the connections are secure. I have checked the battery physically, and with a battery tester, and it appears to be okay
Will the alternator fail gradually or could the resistors or regulator be failing. Have to do a airport run in a few days and hate to be stuck on the highway with a busted alternator.
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Old 08-20-08, 07:22 PM
billys68ss's Avatar
Join Date: May 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 1,459
If you have checked the belts and they are tight then it is highly likely that you have a charging system failure. I would check the alternator when this happens to see what the charging volts are. If it is below 13 volts then it is likely your alternator is failing.
Hope this helps ya,
Old 08-21-08, 04:01 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Eastern Georgia
Posts: 486
I had the same trouble on my 02 Chevy work truck. The light would come and go, took me about a month to catch the light on while I could check it with my meter. Turned out to be a bad alternator.
Old 08-21-08, 06:42 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: NE Conus
Posts: 505

Thanks guys for the responses. Like WT I am trying to get a meter on this when the light is on. I was just thrown off by the randomness of it. I have usually had alternators just go BLATT... not go gradually.
Old 08-22-08, 02:34 PM
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 3
this is bizarre but we had the same thing with our Dodge Stratus

To change the battery on our Dodge, we have to remove the driver side front tire. Looking toward the front of the car, once the tire is removed, we can see the battery. Well our battery light, and sometimes other dash lights, would blink intermittently. What we found was that the hole, where the bolt on the cable screws into the battery, was stripped. In other words the cable was loose. The only way we knew to rectify the problem was to buy a new battery so we did. The lights no longer light up randomly.
Old 08-22-08, 03:03 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: NE Conus
Posts: 505
Belt Tension

Hi guys;
Bejewelle, looked there first thing. also checked all the other wire connections. I am sure it was the alternator as it usually happened at speed or car was warm. Something was breaking down internally.
I found thae old paperwork for this alternator and it stated FREE replacements for life! Well, I took them up and yup! no questions, showed the paperwork and a new (?) alternator was given with no questions. Good on Strauss auto!
Just can't remember the perscribed tightness ( FPI's or belt deflection). Does anyone recall what the belt tension is on this car?

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