1997 Cadillac STS • 138,000 miles

Radio only works sometimes but when I turn the key off the radio works. As well the abs lights is on and the dash reads reduced stability and decreased speed 145/km hr. What is this and can I fix this?
March 16, 2013.

Most likely suspect is the generator. When one of the six diodes fails, "ripple" will be very high and the unit will only be able to produce exactly one third of its rated output current. That's not enough to meet the demands of the electrical system under all conditions. This is a real common problem on GM vehicles and you can expect to go through four to six generators in the life of the car. To reduce the number of repeat failures, replace the battery at the same time unless it is less than about two years old. Due to their design, these generators produce huge voltage spikes that can destroy the internal diodes and voltage regulator, and interfere with the many computers on the car. As the battery ages it loses its ability to dampen and absorb those spikes.

Mar 17, 2013.