Alternator or Battery; What Needs Replacing?


It is a terrible feeling to turn the key in the ignition and hear a low rumbling sound. As soon as the car doesn’t start, you know something’s wrong. Unfortunately, this happens to everyone and is just a part of owning a car. In order to avoid these issues, and to fix your car and get yourself back on track quickly, Newmans Automotive it feels it is important to know what’s wrong. In most cases, it will be either your battery or your alternator.


Batteries run out of life eventually, and it may be that yours has just reached the end of its natural term. If it hasn’t been changed in four or five years, or since you first bought the car, it is probable it may be the issue.

As batteries become older and the metal corrodes inside them it becomes harder for them to retain a charge. We need this charge for the car’s electrical system to run, so when there is not enough charge in the battery, this can lead to faults in your vehicle.

You can check your car battery on the dashboard. If the light is dim then it is a sign that something is wrong. Luckily, the battery can be jump started using cables from another car, but should still be looked after and replaced if necessary.

Car batteries are not too expensive, costing from about $50 to $150.

Replacing them every few years is a good way of making sure you never get that sinking feeling of your car not starting up in the morning.


If even after attempting to jump start your battery, your car still won’t start, it may be a sign that something is wrong with the alternator. The alternator generates electric power in your car, charging your battery as well as running extra electric appliances such as heating or cooling.

If the lights in your car are dim or dim gradually as you drive, this may be a sign you need a new alternator. Furthermore, if your car is making a growling sort of noise, or if you smell hot rubber, it is definitely time to replace your alternator.

These are signs to look out for that signal your alternator may be about to fail. This means it is not keeping the battery charged, leading to faults in your vehicle. Replacing alternators can sometimes be expensive, but car insurance often assists with these costs.

By remembering these tips and generally being vigilant with the care of your car you should be able to avoid any problems. Making sure the battery is charged and the alternator is adequately providing power will eliminate any problems in starting up your vehicle.