When the charging system is malfunctioning, it can exhibit one or more symptoms. For example, the vehicle may have a dead battery, may not crank over and/or cranks over very slowly, or the charging system or battery light might illuminate while driving. Turning on the head lights, heater blower motor, or wipers may cause the engine to stall and/or idle rough. When these types of symptoms occur, it is important to have a Charging System Diagnosis.
A Charging System Diagnosis involves special computer system scan tools, specialized charging system test equipment, and specialized technician training.
The purpose of this article is to provide an outline for some of the essential steps involved in performing a Charging System Diagnosis. This guide can be used—by you and the shop—to track the progress as the mechanics perform the test.