Battery Light

Tiny
JOSEPHP78
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 DODGE CARAVAN
My battery light in my 97 Dodge Caravan came on back in July for 3 days and then all of a sudden went off and my van has been running fine other than a few other problems that I have since fixed. My question is why would it keep doing that? I took it to three different part stores and they checked it back in July and said that my battery and alternator needed replacing and then it starting working fine. Should I just keep driving it and see if the problem stops or should I take it back to the shops and have them test it again. I did however, take it back when the light went off and it was working properly then. What should I do and what is the problem?
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Wednesday, January 12th, 2011 AT 7:15 PM

5 Replies

Tiny
JDL
  • EXPERT
I'd do some testing, when the problem is ongoing. If there was a code, what the actual code number? You may be able to check mil codes yourself. To check for codes, try cycling the ignition switch, you just turn the key till the dash lites come on, no further, no crank, cycle the key on--off, on---off, on, then the mil starts flashing, you count the flashes to get the codes. Your looking for two digit codes.

If you have a digital multimeter and want to check the charging system, we can help you with that. Some people want no part of testing, that's up to you. I can't diagnose without testing. Let us know.
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Wednesday, January 12th, 2011 AT 7:32 PM
Tiny
JOSEPHP78
  • MEMBER
It went off again right after sending that previous message.
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Wednesday, January 12th, 2011 AT 8:38 PM
Tiny
JDL
  • EXPERT
I told you how to check for some trouble codes, anything?
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Wednesday, January 12th, 2011 AT 9:02 PM
Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
Hey joe I got a 2000 doing the same thing did you get it resolved?
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Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017 AT 9:20 AM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
This is an extremely common problem caused by worn brushes inside the alternator. On some Chrysler engines the assembly can be replaced without removing the alternator from the engine, but you need room to get the rear cover off. The brush assembly costs around ten bucks, but you might not find it at an auto parts store. Starter and generator rebuilders have them.

The brushes make intermittent contact at high mileage. The first issue is charging system testing has to be done while the problem is occurring, otherwise everything will test fine. To verify this, measure the two voltages on the two smaller terminals on the back of the alternator, but this must be done while the engine is running. One will have full battery voltage. The other one is supposed to have less, but not 0 volts. When one of the brushes is not making contact, you WILL find 0 volts on that second terminal.
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Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017 AT 11:39 AM

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