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Discussion Starter #1
lately when i start my car its been turning over really slow. like it barely has enough juice to turn the starter. my question is, is it the battery or the alternator? i am 95% sure its the battery, but i want some reassurance so when i replace the battery i know the alternator isnt going to drain the new battery.

i hooked up my battery to a charger and it charged to full pretty damn quick. (bad sign for the battery) it started strong for the next day, but started slowing down again. if i drive long distances, it will start good cuz the alternator charges it up. today, i hooked up a voltmeter while the car was running and it read 14 volts, which is a good sign that the alternator is working right? so anyway, i'm going to get a new battery unless someone tells me that the alternator is bad.

what is the typical life span of a car battery? my car just passed 72k miles today, so i dont know if the battery is nearing the end of its life.

thanks
 

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Thats about right for battery replacement. Had to replace the battery on my last car (monte carlo) at about 61,000 miles. You're in the neighborhood.

And yes, it probably is the battery.
 

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nope it your alternator i had the same problem as you i tohught it was my battery i bought a brand new one 12 days later it didnt start. I reccomend you go to Alterstart they make them from scratch and are more powerful than stock.
 

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you answered you own question with the description: its for sure the battery.. the alternator is not responsible for starting the car....

as for battery life... my car is a 95 and it still has the stock battery in it
 

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I would have to agree with Z and say that it's the battery as well. Sounds like you're getting a charge to the battery but the battery won't hold the charge. I would replace the battery and see if that fixes your problem.
 

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its your alternator. I think you might of damage the battery cell when you charged it. If I were you, I replace the alternator and the battery at the same time.
 

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take it to any shop that sells batteries and have them run a load test on it... i almost guarantee it will fail... which equals bad battery...

now, 14 volts is fine for an alternator, but what's more important is, is it supplying the right amount of amperage? if not, it will cause your next battery to go bad prematurely...

in other words, take it to a shop and check the alternator as well... silly to waste the money on a new battery if the alternator is also bad...
 

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integrarsnj, have you bought an alternator from them are they reliable, how are their alternators compared to ohio generators?

97teg, i think you could take it to sears and have them check it before you buy either one, but most likely its going to be your battery.
 

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guys guys guys...

to all those saying that it "could" be the battery.. it is the battery (and also the alternator possibly)

- Alternator = provides power when car is running
- Battery = allows car to start (obviously car is not running)

deducing that: battery is bad.. now as said above quite a few times, a load test is definitely a good idea since the battery might be bad because the alternator is bad....

as for my stock battery (answering question above), it is the 7 year old one, and it has even been totally deep cycled a few times.. i have been meaning to replace it, but as long as it works, its low on the list....
 

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integra00gsr on Sep/04/02 said:
integrarsnj, have you bought an alternator from them are they reliable, how are their alternators compared to ohio generators?
Its awsome and i got it in like 3 days its brand spanking new not refurbished nice and shiny but its alot stronger than stock so it can handle your system without the lights flickering and all that.It is direct bolt on power it and pop the pullies on.
 

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Unfortunately you have to pull the alternator to bench test it. But jsut a little test, take a voltage reading with the car off. Start the car and take a voltage reading. If you read under 12 Volts with the car off, and under 12 volts with the car on its time to repalce the alternator.

Please be advised i've seen this happens to my mother's cars within 3 months. The alternator went on her cavalier, and her ECM went shortly after it. The same thing happened three months later to her Berretta. Even though these cars have no similarties to ours, Many technicians have told me running your ecm on lower then 12V can cause the ecm to possibly have issues, and that this can happen to any car.

Just to be safe I'd have a volt meter check ut what your system is putting out at the alternator. But Batteries I've seen ast the life of my car, (knock on wood,) 7-8 years no trouble. But additional heat can play a big role in eating a battery as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
everyone is contradicting each other! now you guys have me worried that its the alternator. how do i check the alternator? i tested the voltage w/ the engine running and it read 14 V like i said before. doesn't that mean that the alternator is good? if not, how else do i check the alternator? i have a multimeter, so i can check the current if you tell me where to take the reading and what i should be getting.
 

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start simple, replace the battery, it's cheap, and if you get a good battery, and your alternator is bad, and you deep cycle the new battery (even though this probably won't destroy it) and it does ruin the new battery, take it back, they usually have 6 month, no-questions-asked warranties. and if the battery fixes it, you only blew 40 bucks or whatever. if it doesn't fix it, then try an alternator. start cheap, then go higher, and worst case you get a new battery out of the deal, which isn't bad, and it's not that expensive.
 

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Start your car, while it's running disconnect the battery. If it runs, your battery is toast, if it dies, it's your alternator!
 
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