Question about Mercedes-Benz C-Class

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I have a 1996 C180. The car is not holding charge even when driving. The battery and alternator are fine. The light for the battery is showing on the dash. I am completely stumped. Can anyone help me? Thanks

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The battery (or IGN) indicator on the dash, when lit, indicates that the alternator is not charging.

Check the battery terminals are not corroded, and the battery +12V and earth connections to the vehicle are in good order.
Check battery electrolyte lvel is ok.

Check the battery terminal voltage - it should be 13.8volts to 14.5 volts with the engine running. Switching on the headlights should not cause any reduction in that voltage while the engine is running.

The battery will not charge significantly unless the terminal voltge is in excess of 13.0V.

If all the above test ok, and the battery discharges between daily vehicle uses you may need a new battery.

Posted on Jun 17, 2009

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1 Answer

Had my alternator rebuilt, but batteries still go dead.checked alternator shows charging at 11.9 volts then jumps to 15 volts after 2 minutes. is this the alternator


The alternator should be showing at least 15 volts when running! Anything lower would indicate the alternator is at fault, since you say it is showing below 12 volts even for 2 minutes indicates a fault.

there still could be a fault with the battery not holding its charge or something draining the battery like a wire shorting or trunk light staying on that is making the battery go flat!

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I will try and answer this. Most responses you will receive will have you looking for a drain in the system. Very well could be that.

But you said when Jumper cables are removed it does not charge. I have not heard of this in your Year of car, but witnessed it myself in a 2004 F150. There is a circuit called a "battery saver". Its job is to disconnect a battery drain to preserve the battery. What can happen is the Alternator uses power to make and generate even more power.

When a battery is not fully charged it needs a higher rate of charge and the Alternator may be viewed as a parasitic drain. The battery saver activates and disconnects the charging circuit. It can cut off at even 70MPH. I have seen F150's charge for about 5 minutes after removing a jumper and then cuts the battery charging circuit.

You need to be sure the battery is 100% charged. You need the car checked for things like the Diodes and starter draw. If you take the Alternator or Starter for a bench check it will not show how the wiring is working in the car. It is best to check the whole car.

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Hello
The normal charge of alternator on idling is about 13 to 14 volts. 12 is acceptable but keep in mind it will need attention soon. The needle fluctuates due to the revs of the alternator - there is nothing to worry about. Just look that the charge is always above 12V on idle.

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Hello and welcome to FixYa!


If the battery light is on, I strongly suggest that you have the battery charged. It can be an indication of a weak battery or a faulty alternator. If the battery light still on after charging then the problem will surely be on the alternator itself. If that's the case the alternator should be replaced to resolve the problem.


If the battery won't hold charge even on a new alternator then the problem will be on the battery itself. It surely is in the end of it's service life and replacement will be necessary.


You may try to reset it to by removing the positive battery connector, letting it sit for at least 5mins. then reconnect it again. This will reset the system and can get the battery light off.


Hope this helps and thank you for using FixYa! Have a good one!

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SOUND LIKE WEAK BATTERY.CHECK BATTERY CABLES MAKE SURE THEY ARE TIGHT FREE FROM CORROSSION.IF ALL IS GOOD.HAVE BATTERY CHARGED LOAD TESTED OR REPLACED IF BAD.MAKE SURE ALTERNATOR IS CHARGING BATTERY.WITH ENGINE RUNNING VOLTAGE AT THE BATTERY SHOULD BE 13.5 TO 14.5 VOLTS.IF NOT CHECK ALTERNATOR DRIVE BELT MAKE SURE BELT TENSIONER GOOD.CHECK ALTERNATOR B+ WIRE AND FIELD WIRE MAKE SURE THEY ARE NOT LOOSE OR DAMAGED.CHECK FUSE ALSO.ALL IS GOOD ALTERNATOR NOT CHARGING THE BATTERY..

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have battery and alt checked battery may not be holding charge or alt may not be putting out charge auto stores such as auto zone and advanced do check for free and can check with them still in car

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Hi first check the alternator belt (is it loose...is it there?) if all is ok there then it could be the alternator, have a multimetre put on it it should read around 13.5 if the alternator is doing its job,
Hope this helps

Regards
Steve

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