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    Car woes!!!

    just drove home from work slowly losing power to everything in my car. First the battery light came on the power steering stopped working the lights dimmed then the abs light flickered the the engine management light!!! Ive checked and this seems to be a sure sign that the alternator is duff!!!

    Its an 05 Astra 1.7 CDTi does anyone have a clue how much this will cost me, cant believe it i have just forked out £500 for a radiator service mot and tyre

    12 Comments

    might just be the belt

    Original Poster

    how tight should the belt be? i was too depressed to look under the bonnet when i came home

    Banned

    if the power steering stopped working, its a belt issue, not the alternator

    seems like the belt has fallen off or broken

    What you need is to test the alternator to ensure that is at fault using a multimeter .

    Here is what you do, simple car alternator test ;

    Set the volt meter or multimeter to the DC scale and measure the voltage across the battery terminals - red lead of the voltmeter on the positive terminal, black on the negative. - and make a note of the battery reading with the car turned off.

    Then start the car, (Make sure all the accessories on your car are turned off (lights, radio etc.) and then let the car run for around 30 seconds and check the battery voltage.

    With the engine at a idle, the voltage on the meter should read around 14 volts (13.5 to 14.4). The alternator needs to generate a larger voltage than the battery's rated voltage to overcome the internal resistance of the battery.

    When the car is turned off, a normal battery reading is around 11.3 to 12.0v)


    If the voltage on the battery goes up when the car is started, then more than likley the battery is duff and not holding its charge..

    Sometimes the bushes in the alternator fail and the battery chargers at idle, but not when only load, therefore carry out the test again and get someone to rev and hold the engine RPM @ 2500rpm and take another reading.

    Sounds like the alternator or a battery issue, - you will be able to get a re-conned unit,

    Where abouts are you? - (I have a few contacts with parts)

    Rick

    smoothe;8178129

    how tight should the belt be? i was too depressed to look under the … how tight should the belt be? i was too depressed to look under the bonnet when i came home



    they have an automatic tensioner,so they set their own tension, the tensioner pulleys have been known to break up or as someone has mentioned the belt might have broke.

    Original Poster

    the battery light came on first while i was driving, everything seemed ok for 20 miles then i had to put my lights on then 10 miles later i got off the M1 and lights were dim 1 mile from home the abs light came on, power steering packed up and airbag light and engine man light came on and off normally when i put the indicators on.

    Im in leicester, will have a dig about for a mulimeter but think i drained the battery driving home

    Same sort of thing happend to mates a car and it turned out to be the alternator, luckily the car was in warranty, as it will cost around £400-500. It was a Vectra 03 diesel I think.

    Hi,
    First thing you have to do is chanrge the battery back up again! That means a battery charger!

    If you need help to do this, then I would guess you don't own a battery charger and that you won't know how to connect it.
    If that is the case, then I suggest you get the car to a garage and ask them to do it.

    If you can get the battery charged, then you can carry out the tests as described in an earlier post to see if the alternator is working.

    Couid well be that the garage that did your radiator replacement disconnected the alternator whilst doing the job and FAILED to connect it back up again properly - i.e. didn't thighten the nuts up!

    Regards,

    John

    A guy on ebay has them for £90.00 delivered
    370341830516

    Original Poster

    thanks everyone for your help ill take a look later

    If it was your belt failing / slipping chances are you car would have overheated within minutes (assuming like most cars the water pump is on the same belt as your PS and alternator)

    Sounds like your alternator to me, where are you located? there maybe a alternator reconditioning place nearby if you look in the yellow pages etc. Usually around £60-80 for a recon one.

    Did the power steering actually pack up or just the light come on, I would have thought most modern cars were pretty impossible to drive anything other than a short distance without it.

    Original Poster

    greg_68;8181288

    If it was your belt failing / slipping chances are you car would have … If it was your belt failing / slipping chances are you car would have overheated within minutes (assuming like most cars the water pump is on the same belt as your PS and alternator)Sounds like your alternator to me, where are you located? there maybe a alternator reconditioning place nearby if you look in the yellow pages etc. Usually around £60-80 for a recon one.Did the power steering actually pack up or just the light come on, I would have thought most modern cars were pretty impossible to drive anything other than a short distance without it.



    It packed up it was very hard driving luckily it was only a mile from home
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