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2003 navigator had to replace battery twice in a week but charging system says ok on dash

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  • modicon12133 May 09, 2010

    The battery I replaced was a diehard battery about two years old. it went dead last weekend and would not take a jump so i had to go out and buy a new battery just to get my wife and car home. She drove this past week only short trips around town and yesterday the same thing happened and I had to buy another battery to get the truck home.

  • modicon12133 May 09, 2010

    Do you think it is the alternator but my question if it is why is the charging system check saying it is ok when i hit system info?

  • modicon12133 May 09, 2010

    could it be the alternator


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Make sure your interior lights are not staying on once all the doors are shut. My navigator has done this to me, I read on another posting that there may be corrosion on some wires under the driver seat, that cause the interior lights to stay on, meaning the door is still ajar (open) even though they are closed. What I do is shut all the doors hard, and wobble the truck, and sometimes this works. You could also put your hand on the interior light on the driver door, it will be hot if it stayed on, sometimes it will stay on when the vehicle is in motion.

Posted on Jun 25, 2010

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Yes it can be the alternator.
Best way to check is to start the vehicle - and disconnect the battery (while running).
The vehicle runs off alternator power. The battery only starts it.
If the vehicle dies when you remove the battery - the alternator is at fault.


Posted on May 09, 2010

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I really need more info on this problem to be able to help. For instance:
Where did you get the batteries? How long did it sit before they went "bad"?
Where they just dead? Dead batteries can be recharged.
If they were really Bad then something had to be causing the problem. Likely the Alternator is to blame if it is overcharging. Or even if not, if one of the diodes has gone bad you could be feeding AC into your Battery.
Or if the battery went dead after sitting for a while you may have a parasitic leak from somewhere. Pray it isn't that because those are very hard to find. That being said even the clock can run down the battery if it sits long enough.
Let me know more details including how the battery was determined to be bad and if it was bought at kmart or walmart.

Posted on May 09, 2010

  • Bryan Fullerton
    Bryan Fullerton May 09, 2010

    Well I'm taking a shot in the dark here, since I dont have the vehicle. But the charging system generally does not detect AC voltages. If it is just a light it may not even detect overcharging or charging too high, like 16 volts. A meter style gauge should tell you if it is actually charging at too high a voltage. In the end only a good meter will tell you what the charging system is really doing. Then there is always a chance that the detection system isn't working properly,.
    In the end there are multiple possibilities. If you have a meter and want to test it yourself try this.
    put your meter on DC volts with the car off read the voltage at the battery(new battery preferably) then start the car and take another voltage reading.
    Car not running should have a voltage around 12, with the car running the voltage should be 13 to 15.
    Turn the meter to AC 200 volts and test it again. It should run 30 to 32 volts or less. I am not completely sure what or why it shows that voltage AC, could just be noise. Id have to stick it on an scope to see what the signal looks like. Regardless it is the same on all the suburbans I have ever tested.

    That being said you may have just gotten unlucky with the batteries. Id be interested in knowing if the dead batteries could be charged. You may have an intermitent drain on the system. Say a light sticking on for some reason.

  • Bryan Fullerton
    Bryan Fullerton May 09, 2010

    It could always be the alternator. Hmm what happened to my post to you detailing how to check the alternator? grrr this is one of the reasons Im helping on Fixya less and less.


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