Did you Know about The Alternator

DID YOU KNOW?

FACT:  Every car has an alternator

ANOTHER FACT: An alternator has NOTHING to do with starting your car.

The alternator works while the car engine is turned on and it is a small contraption about the size of a football and it works by spinning internally. Think of it like a CD player spinning the CD while music is playing.

 

So what does it actually do?

Well, it works like a mini generator in your car.

It charges up the battery while you are driving. So if you have suffered from a flat battery because you left a car door open all night – once you get your car up and running, take it for a good long drive and it will top up the charge on your battery. (Just make sure you shut the door this time…)

NOW – While your car is turned on and running, all of your car electricals that you are running such as;

  • radio
  • wipers
  • headlights

Are all using the alternator as their source of power…

HOWEVER – if your car is turned off, all those electricals are now using the battery as their source for power.

Make sense?

Of course, it is a bit more complicated than that, however, keeping it simple with few words we can all understand and actually apply contextually in our own scenarios.

So what happens when the alternator fails?

Well your car is pretty smart. You see, if you’re driving and the alternator has failed, all the electricals will switch to run off the battery so that you don’t experience any interference in your car – that one is a no-brainer for your car.

Unfortunately, this means that NOT ONLY is your car battery being constantly used for its source of power, however it is ALSO, not being charged back up. Which in turn, will give you starting issues if the problem is not picked up.

AND THAT IS REASON why you may have starting problems and be told it’s your alternator that needs to be replaced.

SOOOOOO while your alternator doesn’t actually start your vehicle, it may indirectly be the cause of your vehicle not starting, by a long process that has been happening for a while unbeknown to you.

And remember…

If its not working –

It’s broken