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Discussion Starter #1
Started a few days ago. Battery light came on when driving to class. Got there, turned car on a few hours later, nothing. Started it three times total through various stops and no light. Drove to class a few day later, no light. Halfway home later the light came on while diving, stopped at a store, turned car on again and now light. Hoping this is something easier/cheaper than alternator replacement.
 

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Started a few days ago. Battery light came on when driving to class. Got there, turned car on a few hours later, nothing. Started it three times total through various stops and no light. Drove to class a few day later, no light. Halfway home later the light came on while diving, stopped at a store, turned car on again and now light. Hoping this is something easier/cheaper than alternator replacement.
It would help if you identify your vehicle, year, model, etc. in the profile section.
Then, how old is your battery ?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Sorry, should have thought of that. 2011 200 Touring 3.6 V6. Don’t know how old the battery is, I just bought the car in August.
 

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I dont know if 2011 has a volts gauge but if so, and its under 14.0v when its running, its prob the alternator. Check belt see if its loose or worn...belt tensioner may be done. Have battery load tested. One of these checks should reveal your prob. Good luck!
 

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Some of the major chain auto parts stores will run a free test of the charging system. O'Reilly is one, maybe AutoZone. The battery on your car is in the driver's side fender but there are posts under the hood for jump starting so they should still be able to do the test. Your car might have the original battery but I'd say get the free test done before you jump to conclusions.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I tried to have the battery tested at Advance Auto but they told me they couldn’t do it because the battery isn’t immediately accessible in the engine bay. Can you test with just the positive terminal lead in the engine compartment?
 

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Im not familiar w the gen 1 set up, but yes...and use a good metal spot somewhere under there for ground. The best place too have it checked is an alternator or electrical repair shop. You want the battery load tested. its hit or miss w the parts stores checking, especially if there just using a volt meter or something that plugs into the cigarette lighter outlet.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Autozone tested the battery and alternator. Battery said 12 V and the alternator read at 14. They said it seems fine and I haven’t had the battery light come on again. Haven’t driven since last time the light came on but same route with wipers and lights with no light
 

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I wonder if they did a load test, or just measured voltage with engine on and off, which doesn't really reveal the condition of the battery.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
They put leads on the battery post and ground so I’m assuming it just measured voltage. Does that make the battery more likely that the alternator?
 

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You def gotta load test battery. Volt meter just reads volts but doesnt check if the battery is good under load. ( radio on, wipers etc ). A load test simulates this. You can buy one at harbor freight or parts store for around $20-$40. good investment for a definite answer on the battery and charging system. It read 14v w the car running so alternator is good...which leaves the battery.
 

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If it tested good at Autozone then you are going to have to lay eyes on the battery connections. Remove the inner fender and inspect them.
 
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