My battery not charging

Tiny
ANONYMOUS
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 CHEVROLET SUBURBAN
  • 119,000 MILES
My battery not charging light came on the other day. Had the truck taken into a shop where they tested the battery and alternator putting it under two load tests. Everything checked out that it was working properly. Yesterday driving down the freeway the light came on again with the message battery not charging stayed on for approximately 10 seconds then went away and the voltage meter on the dash resumed its normal position. About 40 minutes later the gauge dropped, the light came back on saying battery not charging. At this point every 10 minutes or so it would go off for a bit and come back on. Finally reaching my destination the light and battery not charging message stayed on and the truck won't start now. Not sure what it might be looking for ideas, truck has no after market systems installed except a lo-jack system that was installed by my finance company but has never given any issues. Ideas please!
Sunday, April 7th, 2013 AT 2:38 PM

12 Replies

Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Hello,

When an alternator goes out it can do so intermittently that why it tested good at the parts store.

Here is a guide to help you get the alternator changed out.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-replace-an-alternator

Please let us know if you need anything else to get the problem fixed.

Cheers, Ken
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Sunday, April 7th, 2013 AT 3:02 PM
Tiny
DENNISCROSS
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 CHEVROLET SUBURBAN
  • 5.3L
  • V8
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 225,000 MILES
My alternator went out on me today. I managed to limp home. Replaced the alternator and serpentine belt and now when I start the car it barely idles, like 100 rpm, and even when I hold the accelerator down to about 1500 rpm the same message comes in and out. Battery Not Charging and then it would go off for about 10 seconds and then right back on. Right after installing a new alternator the Amp gage went up to 14 volts but eventually came down and holds right around 12 volts. Any ideas?
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
The first part of the test involves measuring battery voltage with the engine running, which you already observed is falling. The third cause I eluded to is a high-resistance break in the wire going from the generator's output terminal back to the battery's positive post. One test is to measure the voltage at that output terminal when the engine is off. If must have full battery voltage all the time, but that can be misleading. If you find 0 volts, there's a burned-open fuse link wire or a blown very large fuse that is typically bolted into the fuse box.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-check-a-car-alternator

It's when you DO find voltage that you have to look further to identify if there's a high-resistance break. For example, when fuse link wires are used and it burns open, it leaves a carbon track behind. That carbon will conduct enough current for a voltmeter to pick up battery voltage, but the generator's output current will never get back through there to charge the battery. The clue to that is with the engine running, you will find considerably higher voltage on the generator's output terminal than across the battery terminals.
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
DENNISCROSS
  • MEMBER
Caradiodoc, thank you! Just for shucks I replace the new alternator with another new one (old new one turned out to be shot under bench test). The voltage came back to 14 volts on both the battery side as well as the alternator side of the fusible link. Battery is 28 months old. Now if I hold the accelerator at 2000 rpms everything seems to be half way decent. When I let go, car barely idles and even sometimes dies. Everything was fine prior to the first alternator going out. Now when I read the computer, Code P0102 comes up (Mass Air Flow (MAF) Circuit Low Input). I've researched what it means, symptoms, causes and solutions but just find it weird that it is now a problem. When the first alternator went out the serpentine belt was shredded. Could that have hit the MAF wiring or sensor? To tell you the truth, I don't even know where that is. Any thoughts? I don't blame you for not answering. One person can't monopolize all your time. So thanks for the first response back :-) Dennis
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SUBURBAN03
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 CHEVROLET SUBURBAN
  • V8
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 150,000 MILES
I have a 2003 Suburban 1500 with 150,000 miles. The the Battery not charging light came on as well as Brake service light. In addition a slight vibration was felt in the brake pedal as well as a growling noise. The charging meter showed discharging so I replaced the alternator. The charging problem seems to be fixed, but the vibration and growling reoccurred. When the growling started the amp meter showed discharge and the Battery not charging code was displayed. When the noise stopped the meter returned to normal and the code disappeared. I thought the ABS might be failing so I pulled the 60A fuse and drove the car, within the first mile the problem happened again. So what do you think. Go Packers
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BILLYMAC
  • EXPERT
Really sounds like the brake rotors or pads may be the prob as to what effect that would have on the chargeing system I can't see a connection.I would look closely at rotors pads and master cyl for this prob
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SUBURBAN03
  • MEMBER
Brake pads and rotors are in good shape. The vibration is not like a warped rotor it is very slight and only occurs when amp meter is in discharge and growling noise is occurring. In two hours of test driving this occurred three times less than 30 sec each time.
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BILLYMAC
  • EXPERT
So something is pulling a lot of amps. Causing the alt to discharge. You may have to start unplugging accessories and test drive. Like a/c pump clutch failure can cause high amp draw. I would unplug the a/c drive see if it does it if so next I would unplug blower motor drive again. Try without lights on anything you can drive without for awhile you may have to unplug one at a time.

Once you get to the part that is pulling all these amps then we can try and find out why it is doing this. I know not the answer you were looking for but this is a very hard prob to find.
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SUBURBAN03
  • MEMBER
AC pulley could explain the amp draw and possibly the vibration? I will try that next.
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BILLYMAC
  • EXPERT
Yes let me know we are here for the duration
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
RETHOMPSON
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 CHEVROLET SUBURBAN
Electrical problem
2002 Chevy Suburban V8 Two Wheel Drive Automatic

battery light flashes at highway speed and voltage meter drops to half charge
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)
Tiny
RASMATAZ
  • MEMBER
Get the alternator checked out if okay could be the computer driver control of the field generation
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Friday, March 2nd, 2018 AT 1:00 PM (Merged)

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