2006 Chevrolet Impala Battery died after 0nly 3 years

  • 1.6L
  • V6
  • FWD
  • 51,000 MILES
Called the mechanic and he jumped the battery. Car started immediately. Message appeared on the dash saying system engine charging batter. Message stays on and battery light stays on. Mechanic did a diagnostic test and codes came up. Says to check the alternator and the charging sensor. He feels that both should be changed. Alternator is over charging the battery.
Do you
have the same problem?
Thursday, February 19th, 2015 AT 10:00 AM

1 Reply

What's the question?

I don't know what you're referring to by "charging sensor". If you mean the voltage regulator, that is built into the generator and is next to impossible to replace without damaging other parts. You get a new one with the replacement generator whether you need it or not.

The bigger issue is when you do have a generator failure, you must replace the battery at the same time unless it is less than about two years old. Due to their very poor design, these generators starting with '87 models, develop huge voltage spikes that can destroy the internal diodes and voltage regulator, and interfere with computer sensor signals. The battery is responsible for damping and absorbing those spikes but as it ages it loses its ability to do that. When you do not replace the battery, those voltage spikes commonly are responsible for going through four to six replacement generators in the life of the vehicle.

It's impossible to know for sure, but it likely the generator developed larger and larger voltage spikes until one shorted the voltage regulator. That would result in over-charging the battery which would permanently damage it. To prove it, use an inexpensive digital voltmeter to measure the battery voltage while the engine is running. You should find between 13.75 and 14.75 volts. If your voltage regulator is shorted, the voltage will be too high.
Was this
Thursday, February 19th, 2015 AT 10:31 AM

Please login or register to post a reply.

Recommended Guides