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My jeep check engine light came on.

My volt meter went to 0.1. I changed the alternator and it worked for about 10 seconds and it went out. I installed another one and it did the same thing!!!

What is the issue?

  • 1
    Did you read the error that caused the check engine light? – I have no idea what I'm doing Apr 8 '16 at 7:25
  • 0.1 does not sound right at all, it should at least be showing battery voltage. Where were you probing? Ensure the connections are clean and tight, also that the battery connections are clean and tight. Check your grounds. – rpmerf Apr 8 '16 at 11:04
  • @rpmerf Do most alternators have a rectifier built into them on cars? – DucatiKiller Apr 22 '16 at 1:17
  • as far as I know they do. Haven't done too much with alternators aside from replace them when they aren't charging. – rpmerf Apr 22 '16 at 12:47
  • @user16264 I think you need to provide more details. Are you talking about the in-dash volt meter, or a multimeter you connected? If you used the multimeter, where did you take the voltage reading? – Paul Dufresne Apr 28 '16 at 4:07
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Your question is relatively vague, however there are a few things that could be at issue.

You could have a short circuit in your system that is draining the battery, which could also overload the alternator, causing it to fail. Since most of the circuits in a car are behind fuses, a short causing the problem you describe would have to be before the power distribution module (fuse panel), which means it's most likely something directly connected to the battery check:

  • Connection from battery to starter
  • Connection from battery to fuse panel
  • Connection from battery to alternator
  • Check the Alternator

It could also be a bad battery. If the battery was allowed to discharge to low, it won't take a charge anymore.

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