2001 Oldsmobile Silhouette Dimming Headlights and Interior

Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 OLDSMOBILE SILHOUETTE
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 91,500 MILES
Hello, I have a 2001 Olds Silhouette. When I press on the brakes, the front headlights dim a little. Also, when in idle in park or drive, my headlights and interior lights dim a little too, every 5 to 10 seconds. I had the regulator screw on the alternator changed, but it still is doing the same thing. I had my charging system checked out at Autozone, and the alternator is charging at 14.5. Would appreciate any help on this, Thanks.
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Friday, November 28th, 2008 AT 6:21 PM

18 Replies

Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Hi, it sounds like you have a bad ground from your engine to the frame, inspect it and get back to me.

Thanks for using 2carpros. Com
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Friday, November 28th, 2008 AT 7:49 PM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
Hi, I will have to let someone else inspect it, since I am disabled. I forgot to tell you, this all started after I had my lower intake manifold gasket replaced. Can you be more specific, to which ground it could be or from where to where off hand? Thanks.
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Friday, November 28th, 2008 AT 10:32 PM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Hi, the engine needs to gounded to the frame of the car, if the mechanic left it off, it would cause this problem. Have the repair garage recheck the repair.
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Saturday, November 29th, 2008 AT 3:00 AM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
Ok will do, and i'll let you know. Thanks.
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Saturday, November 29th, 2008 AT 7:45 PM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
Ok, took it to the place that did my gasket repair, and they checked all the grounds. They said everything is good, nothing corroded. They checked the battery, it charges around 12.6. But the headlights and interior lights still flick. I also tried to turn the engine off, and I turned my headlights on, stepped on the brake pedal and the headlights and interior lights still dimmed and went back to normal. They checked my brake lights, headlights connections, all good. I don't know what else to do. Do you know what else could be wrong? Thanks.
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Friday, December 5th, 2008 AT 1:08 PM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Hi, your charging voltage is too low. It should be about 13.6 volts, is the alternator an aftermarket rebuilt?
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Friday, December 5th, 2008 AT 1:11 PM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
I'm sorry that was just the battery charge. With the alternator, it's around 14.5 to 14.6
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Friday, December 5th, 2008 AT 1:13 PM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Hi, did this problem come up after the alternator was installed?
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Saturday, December 6th, 2008 AT 12:15 AM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
No, I never had a alternator installed. It's still the factory one. I installed a new Diehard battery at Sears yesterday, and it's still doing the same thing. Also, I tested it yesterday with the engine off and headlights on, when I stepped on the brakes, headlights dimmed a little and then went back to normal.
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Saturday, December 6th, 2008 AT 12:07 PM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
When you say dim a little its it realy noticable. Beacuse all cars have eletrcial fluxuations when circuits are turned on. Some cars more then others. But if the alternator in some conditions can not hold the charging voltage steadly, you might have to replace it.
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Saturday, December 6th, 2008 AT 1:25 PM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
It's not that noticable, but it's there. What is causing the slight dim on my headlights, when I have my engine off, and headlights on, when I step on my brakes? That's the test I also did. The alternator I was told is good.
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Sunday, December 7th, 2008 AT 12:45 AM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
This leads back to the engine to chassis ground. Try replacing the ground strap, clean the surfaces wear the strap is mounted. Please let me know.
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Sunday, December 7th, 2008 AT 12:33 PM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Hi, I was wondering because you mention that the alternator regulator was changed, that is internal on the alternator, most people replace the alternator.
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Sunday, December 7th, 2008 AT 2:17 PM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
I had the alternator regulator screw replaced, there was some kind of bulletin on this flicker issue, but it didn't help.
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Monday, December 8th, 2008 AT 12:51 AM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
I will let you know, when this is done. Thanks.
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Monday, December 8th, 2008 AT 12:52 AM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
Ok, I took it to a Chevy dealership yesterday, and they checked everything out. They checked all the grounds, made sure they were clean, charging system, etc. They said everything is fine. They said that this is normal, as the flicker or surge is not that bad. They also said, some vehicles are like this, depending on the rpms, when they go up or down. They said it's up to me if I want to replace the alternator, since the regulator is inside. But, they don't recommend me do that for now. Since everything checks out fine.
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Friday, December 12th, 2008 AT 1:31 AM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Yep. Some cars, are just more noticeable than other, but they all do it, a little. If you decide to replace the alternator please let me know if that fixes it.
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Friday, December 12th, 2008 AT 12:28 PM
Tiny
RICK200
  • MEMBER
I will let you know. Thank you for your time and your kind help. I really appreciate it. Thank you again.
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Saturday, December 13th, 2008 AT 12:28 AM

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