Getting to the Root of Dodge Sprinter 3500 Alternator Problems
Having a dead alternator is synonymous to having a dead vehicle. Your lights, radio, battery, A/C system, and all other electrical components in your Dodge will fail to function properly and ultimately die the moment your alternator stops supplying an adequate amount of electricity. It's like dying a slow death on the road. First, your light assembly will start to flicker and grow dim. Then, the darkness will be followed by silence as your car radio and A/C goes out. Last to exit the scene would be your car's battery. You'll know you've reached the point of death once your battery loses its power completely, as this is your car's last and only source of electricity in the event of alternator malfunction. Since the battery doesn't have the capacity to supply the amount of electricity necessary to keep your vehicle going, it is a must to ensure your alternator's working properly all the time. Of course, problems can't be avoided, but they can certainly be nipped in the bud before they worsen. Here's a quick troubleshooting guide to help you get to the root of your Dodge Sprinter 3500 alternator problems:
Odd grinding or squealing noise
If you keep hearing this kind of noise from your engine, then you need to check on your alternator's bearings. Grinding or squealing noises from the alternator indicate bad bearings. When bearings start to wear out, they become extremely and annoyingly noisy. The noise usually continues until the bearings break down completely, causing your alternator to function poorly. Aside from bad bearings, the grinding noise may also indicate a worn or overheated alternator rotor. If you encounter these problems, try adjusting your fan belt to the proper tension level and see if this will make any difference. Although proper belt adjustment may do the trick for some, it's only a temporary fix. Replacing the worn bearings and faulty rotor is still the best way to solve this problem.
Whining noises combined with diminished alternator power are signs of diode failure. If the diodes in your alternator are failing, the alternating current (AC) won't be converted to the direct current (DC) necessary to keep your battery fully charged. This will cause the alternator to produce less electricity than usual, eventually resulting in complete power loss. Replace bad diodes right away to restore your alternator's power to full capacity.