Battery warning light very dim when charge fails - Hyundai Forums : Hyundai Forum
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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 01:01 PM Thread Starter
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Battery warning light very dim when charge fails

Battery warning light on my terracan is so dim unless you shadow it with your hand etc it is just not visible.it used to be bright like the others I never noticed when it stopped being bright.
Only found this when the alternator failed and I was stuck with flat battery, new alternator fitted but bulb is still very dim on turning on ignition so that seems to rule out it was something to do with the old alternator wiring etc.
Worried now if say belt failed and not able to see warning as could have disaster with no water pump.
Local​ auto electrician unable to help said that is the best he thinks it will be now as if in wiring back to the alternator that is to complicated to tackle.
Any ideas anyone.
In the meantime I have ordered a cigarette socket volt meter/USB fitting.
David
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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 01:58 PM
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Not sure if your cluster uses bulbs or LED's on the PCB, but if it uses bulbs, you could try swapping in a new bulb.

OTOH, when the alternator failed on my 2002 Focus, I never got a warning light, I was driving along and the tach went crazy and the radio turned off, and I pulled off the road and the car wouldn't start ...


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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 02:19 PM
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Hello David, let's see if this not so local auto electrician can help.

On the back of the alternator there's a connector with 2 wires on it. One wire should have a constant 12V (battery sense wire), the other should show zero volts while the ignition is off (battery warning light wire). What I would try is disconnect the connector and measure the voltage on the two terminals with the ignition off so you can identify which wire is which. Next, use a length of wire and link the battery warning light wire (the one with no voltage on it) to the battery negative terminal or some other good ground. Now switch the ignition on and see if the battery light is brightly lit.

If the warning light is still dim in the above test, the next thing I would try is remove the orange link connector from the engine bay fusebox....see below. Now use your link wire to ground terminal 12 on the socket in the fusebox. Next, switch the ignition on and see if the warning light is bright. Make sure the link connector pinout at the bottom of the photo is orientated correctly. The star on the pinout donates an empty terminal so use that to locate terminal 12 if the pinout diagram is the wrong way round.

Let me know how you get on with those tests and if your light is still dim we'll decide what to try next.

Regards.
Scottie.

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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 05:42 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Scottie
I will try this as soon as I can, will look for the battery sense wire location (I didn't fit the alternator) looking at the alternator from above last week I only noticed the charge cable set in a cover and what looked like a multi plug both on the side of the alternator. In my youth all the wires use to be connected to exposed pillers orspades on the back end.
I will report back. The fuse box is correct same as mine. Further to the other response to my query I did check the bulb, tried it in another location as well just fine.
David
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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 02:53 AM Thread Starter
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Hi Scottie
No wires on back vacuum brake pump mounted there. Charge cable and one plug in cable both on the side of the alternator. Both these are loomed together for a few inches to a pair of joints the charge cable in a box joined by eyelet and bolt to cable disappearing into large loom, the plug in cable is piggyback jointed fixed to the lid of the charge join box which looks to be a plug together joint. Then also disappears into the large loom. It's not clear if this cable is a two wire cable but can I assume this is the sensing wires. The plug into the alternator is hard to access to get out and looks to have a clip of some sort which will be difficult. The joint is easy to access but again looks to be locked by some sort of clip. If they are the wires would it be ok to take the actions you suggest from the joint first to see what results
David
PS sorry for the double post

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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 04:36 AM
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Quote:
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sorry for the double post
Don't worry about it. It happens all the time but it get's a bit messy when there are two threads running relating to the same fault.

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Originally Posted by madarin
No wires on back vacuum brake pump mounted there.
Well, I said on the back but I just meant somewhere on the alternator there will be a two pin plug. I forgot about the vacuum pump being mounted on yours.

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The joint is easy to access but again looks to be locked by some sort of clip. If they are the wires would it be ok to take the actions you suggest from the joint first to see what results
Yeah, I don't see why not. It's the same two wires so just apply the initial voltage test at the joint connector. In fact I've got my work computer here now so I should have a full wiring diagram for the diesel charging system....see below.

So according to the diagram the charge warning light wire is blue with an orange trace stripe and the battery sensor wire is yellow. The joint connector in the diagram is the orange plug on the engine bay fusebox, and as you can see terminal 12 on that connector is the wire routing to the warning lamp on the instrument cluster. My guess is there's a high resistance somewhere on the warning lamp circuit between the bulb and the alternator so the way I'd go about finding it is to just ground the warning light wire at convenient points along the circuit until the lamp fully illuminates. Once it fully illuminates you'll know that the high resistance is somewhere between the point you just grounded and the previous point, you follow?

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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 06:40 AM Thread Starter
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Hi Scottie
I have done the first test (before I read your last post) got the plug out of the alternator and found zero volts wire connected it to battery neg and bulb is bright. So assume that​ means there is no resistance in the wire from there to the panel warning bulb if I followed your last advice correctly, is that correct, if so what do I have to look at next please
David
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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 04:46 PM
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Hi Scottie
I have done the first test (before I read your last post) got the plug out of the alternator and found zero volts wire connected it to battery neg and bulb is bright. So assume that​ means there is no resistance in the wire from there to the panel warning bulb if I followed your last advice correctly, is that correct, if so what do I have to look at next please
David
Yeah that means there is no resistance in the wire from the point where you grounded it to the bulb. If you grounded the wire right at the alternator that suggests the resistance is within the alternator itself which is a little odd since you said the same thing happened with the original one too. Unless of course there is high resistance in the alternator ground which might explain why the fault is happening on a second alternator and might explain why you ended up with a flat battery in the first place.

Try reconnecting the alternator plug and connect your ground wire onto the alternator casing. Turn the ignition on and see if the warning light is illuminated bright. But don't run the engine with the ground wire attached to the alternator. If the alternator does have a bad ground your link wire might get very hot when the engine is running.
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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-12-2017, 02:46 AM Thread Starter
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Hi Scottie
Yes did test right from the plug which goes into the alternator. Will try earthing the case later this morning.
Had started to think about how there was no return circuit but as the alternator is bolted to the block and the original unbolted and the new one re bolted the connection should be good and if it was an internal thing the new alternator should not have it.
Thanks David
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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-12-2017, 04:11 AM
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Yeah, your right. A bad ground to the alternator seems unlikely but it is where evidence is leading us.

I've never had the alternator off a Terracan. There isn't perhaps rubber mounts on the alternator brackets which would isolate it from the engine block? I've come across that a few times in the past. Never on a Hyundai, mind you but I'm just trying to think why two alternators aren't able to ground the warning lamp properly.

Just a thought...does your car have a towbar with a split charging circuit by any chance?
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