What does the Alternator do?
It charges the vehicle’s battery and helps power electrical accessories – lights, radio, etc.
How does it work?
In a nutshell, it creates AC power that is stored in the battery and converted to DC power to operate the vehicle’s accessories. A pulley connected to the alternator and driven by the engine’s serpentine belt spins it to generate the power.
It’s importance because…
The alternator continually charges the battery.
It might be going back if…
The engine labours or is slow to start, very much like a weak or dead battery. If the alternator is going bad, it won’t sufficiently charge the battery. Also, the dashboard light that illuminates and says “ALT” or “CHARGE” or shows a battery symbol is an indicator the alternator is going bad and should be inspected immediately.
You shouldn’t wait because…
There generally won’t be much of a clue before the alternator goes bad, but when it does, don’t wait to get it checked out – and don’t plan to drive far. When the alternator fails you’ll only have a few minutes of battery power to keep your vehicle going. Quickly find a safe place to pull over before the vehicle stops all together.
ACDelco offers GM Original Equipment alternators and professional alternators covering most cars, trucks, and SUVs. No matter what you drive, chances are your Professional Service Centre has you covered with an alternator that meets or exceeds original specifications.