Are you tired of seeing the service charging system alert on your dashboard? Do you ever wonder how to stop it from coming to your dashboard?
The alert should make you take care of your car’s charging system. Expect the problem to be in your electrical command unit (ECU), alternator, or battery.
Once the parts have issues, there won’t be proper energy flow. The alternator won’t power up the battery if any of its parts has a fault.
The good news is that solving various charging system issues is made easy with this post.
We’ll go through problems related to the service battery system warning and how to solve them. But let’s start with what this reminder means.
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What does “Service Charging Battery System” mean?
Once you see the service charging system on your car’s dashboard, be alert to what’s happening to your vehicle. Something is wrong with your car’s battery or alternator.
The problem can be one or more and comes from your car’s charging. So, it would help if you solved the matter before it caused further damage.
Some issues, like a broken alternator, can allow you to run the car for some time. Your battery will power most of the car’s functions.
Once the battery charge ends, your car will stop. Remember, it becomes hard to restart once your engine goes off.
How the warning appears on your car dashboard varies with your car model. But in most cars, it comes with a blue, yellow, or red battery light. It is unsafe not to draw your attention to the problem.
8 Common Causes of Problems in Your Battery Charging System
The following aspects can cause your battery charging system to have issues:
1. A Dead Alternator
If your alternator is bad or dead, your charging system will fail. Most features in your car will fail, and the battery can soon die.
The alternator can die because it is old or has much damage. Its parts, like the generator, fuses, or cables, can have various faults.
Each inner part of the alternator has a vital role in supplying power. Once the pieces are dead, the alternator will fail.
Also, your alternator can spoil because of water or oil spillage. Such acts happen without you knowing. Spills clog in the inner parts and attract dust that causes less flow of power.
2. A Poor ECU
The battery charging system will also warn you if the ECU has problems. When great, this part ensures a smooth flow of the charging procedure.
It does it through proper control of the voltage from the alternator. If the ECU has problems, it is terrible news for the battery and alternator. Sometimes, these issues come from a wrong jumpstart of your car.
There will be excess or less voltage flow. Expect your vehicle to lag upon starting it up.
Also, your car will use too much fuel without a proper ECU. So, you’ll have to maintain the charging system.
3. Poor Wiring
Poor wiring won’t allow proper power flow like any other electronic device. It also causes many power faults that cause further harm to your car’s charging system.
Such an issue is because there will be excess or less voltage in the wires. So, your battery will use too much power and drain.
Sometimes, it will get less charge from the alternator. The car will now give you the service charging system reminder.
Your car’s wires might also be dirty, dead, or broken. Remember, it won’t be good news in your car once the cables are in a poor state. There will be no stable power flow to the battery or other areas.
4. Battery Issues
When you see the service charging system warning, your battery’s health first hits your mind. The battery can either be dead, not charging, or draining power.
If your battery is dead, it can either be old or a result of a short. Most cars can last well for around 2 to 5 years.
But it varies with your car or how you care for it. Your car won’t start if your battery is dead.
Also, when any battery part has problems, there will be less or no power charge. You’ll see this problem using a multimeter. The voltage should range from 12.3V to 13V.
5. Drive Belt
In every car, this belt is the alternator’s heart. It spins the pulley that drives the alternator.
Once it’s broken or dead, you’ll hear some rattling or whining. The tool can’t do its role and make the alternator charge your battery.
Besides getting the service charging system warning, some car additions can go off. It is because of the low or zero power coming from the alternator.
Your drive belts will weaken, especially if wet or the car has too much load. Here, the belt will either spin slower or keep slipping off.
If your car’s battery is corroded, a service charging system light will come on. Remember, Ohm’s law says that for a given voltage, the amps will reduce when there’s more holding back.
Your battery will have blue, whitish, or greenish stuff on the terminals. There will be less or zero current flow via the circuits.
Also, you may not see some corrosion. The elements will be deep in the battery cables.
The problems come from leaking gases or battery fluids. It can also be that your battery is old.
Expect the terminals to have some corrosion. So, they won’t be able to hold much charge.
7. A Dirty Engine
Failure to care for your charging system makes it have much more dirt. Remember, cleaning your car goes way beyond making it look clean on the outside.
Your engine can be dirty from oil spills from valves or oil seals. The liquids make your alternator or battery terminals unclean.
If they have more clogs and dirt, there will be less power flow. Most parts, like the drive belt, won’t work well when dirty. It can cause a slow death to your alternator and battery.
8. Excess Accessories
Adding great features to your car makes it beautiful and more comfortable. But sometimes, you can add some accessories that stress your charging system.
Some items include turbo boost, stereo system, LED lights, and many more. So, once you turn all of them on, your charging system will keep reminding you of your battery system’s state.
The alternator charges parts and can have less capacity to hold them. You’ll see that these items keep going on and off.
Ignoring the warning is more dangerous. Your car charging system can die and cause more significant expenses.
9 Best Ways to Solve Issues with Your Charging System
When you see the service charging battery system warning, worry less but take care. So, here are the top tips you can use to service your charging system in great shape.
1. Replace the Battery
Change your battery if it is more than seven years old and has charging problems. Also, after you check its voltage using a multimeter and it has less capacity, please change it.
Check for the batteries that suit your car’s needs. Don’t go for a battery that doesn’t meet your alternator’s capacity.
Here, let your trusted mechanic or Car Company do it for you. You’ll save more costs in the future and avoid the service charging system alert.
2. Maintain the Battery
Also, before changing it, keep checking it to see that it is in an excellent state. Always check its health and order after some days.
Do that using insulation kits and a multimeter. Every cable should be in excellent condition.
It allows a proper current flow from the alternator to other car parts. Once it gets old, it is safe to replace it on time.
3. Clean the Charging System Parts
As you clean your car, remember the charging system. Check if there are any oil leaks around every part.
If there’s any corrosion, removing the decay is also easy. It gives your battery more life.
You won’t attract any other dust to the inner system parts. Power flow will be great.
Never spray water into the alternator and starter. So, you’ll see fewer cases of service charging system alerts.
4. Check on the Wiring
The charging system relies on proper and safe wires. Unsafe wires can make your vehicle blow.
Fixing the broken and old wires is easy. Let your mechanic advise you well on the best choices.
Check your car’s wiring manual to ensure every wire is in the correct part. If you aren’t sure, let the mechanic help you. Your vehicle will be safer.
5. Reduce the Accessories
A car’s features make it more interesting. But more burden is on your charging system.
So, to reduce excess current draw, reduce these additions. Cut down on listening to your stereo every time while the car isn’t on.
Also, leaving your lights on after driving is dangerous. Your battery will keep draining fast. But avoiding it will ensure your car charging system does well.
6. Look at the Drive Belt
If your alternator makes strange noises, it is safe you give it your attention. Check the belt well for any wear or dirt.
It reduces tension with the pulley. So, the alternator will supply power.
Go for a new one if it is broken or worn out once the spring is worn. Once it’s great, the service charging system will be fine.
7. Drive Many Times
A battery will be safe when at proper charge levels. Driving it at least 20 minutes a day keeps your battery in excellent condition.
Your car won’t have starting problems if you drive every day. But if you won’t drive every day, invest in a float charger. It will be rare to see service charging system alerts.
8. Replace the Alternator
Go for a new alternator if it is too old or has many faults. Your mechanic or car company should advise you on the best alternator for your car.
Remember, alternators can serve for seven years after at least 80,000 miles. It can lose some of its great features. A new and correct one boosts the charging system.
9. Change the ECU
If your car’s ECU has errors, it is better to replace it. Your alternator will be safer and work better.
Getting new parts for the ECU is excellent. But getting new ECU parts is more costly.
How much you’ll pay varies with the car and the ECU you want. Before choosing to replace it, test it using an OBD II reader to see the error codes.
It’s always safe to care for your car’s battery and charging system. The system doesn’t need much maintenance if you look at it after every few days.
When the service charging system warns you on the dashboard, ensure you attend to it. You’ll save your car from deeper trouble. It means that the ECU, alternator, or battery is either old or has various faults.
Cleaning the system and reducing accessories are great tips. They keep your charging system from much power stress. Replace any part if they are old or have many errors.
So, after how long do you check your car’s charging system? Please feel free to tell us.