2000 Dodge Dakota Over-voltage indication

Tiny
SHANESAW
  • MEMBER
  • 2000 DODGE DAKOTA
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 171,000 MILES
Occasionally while driving, the volt meter pegs out over 18 volts, the "check gages" light comes on and I can hear a muffled sound through the speakers while listening to the radio. Turning the vehicle off then restarting causes it to go back to a normal voltage indication. What might the problem be?
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Monday, April 13th, 2009 AT 12:43 PM

3 Replies

Tiny
THETOOLMAN
  • MEMBER
Sounds like your Alternator may be going. It could also be the board or one of the gauges on the indicator board itself? I am speaking of the display board that holds all of your indicator lights and gauges I am not sure about this particular model but many have changed to the computer type circuit board that holds your indicator lights and gauges. It really sounds like the voltage regulator is sticking to me. You could pull over when that happens and check the actual voltage with a meter. That way you can verify that it is actually a case of over voltage that is causing the gauge to peg out. If your getting a reading above 14.5 volts DC then the alternator voltage regulator is sticking.

Good Luck!
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Monday, April 13th, 2009 AT 3:45 PM
Tiny
SHANESAW
  • MEMBER
Thanks for replying. Is the voltage regulator something that can be replaced or is it an integral part of the alternator?
I'm thinking it's the alternator to because of the muffled sound coming through my speakers and the lights flicker a bit. I guess checking the voltage at the alternator is the best way to verify though.
Thanks again.
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Monday, April 13th, 2009 AT 9:44 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
The alternator will not cause the overcharging condition. It only does what the regulator tells it to do. The regulator is built into the engine computer, and even though computers are extremely unreliable, it's not common for the regulator circuit to fail.

Thetoolman is right about measuring battery voltage when the problem acts up. You can watch the brightness of the dome lights too. Before you hop out of the truck, shift into reverse and watch if the voltage gauge drops to normal. If it does, suspect a grounded wire between the alternator and the engine computer. That wire goes from the alternator through the Power Distribution Center on the left fender to the computer on the right fender. When shifting into reverse, the engine rocks on the rubber mounts and will move wiring harnesses causing problems to come and go.

Caradiodoc
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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 AT 3:38 AM

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