What Does an Alternator Do?

Car Alternator

You probably don’t think much about your vehicle’s alternator, but it’s one of the most important parts. So, what does an alternator do? Essentially, its role is to keep your vehicle’s electrical system functioning correctly by creating electric power and functioning as a key charging system. If something goes wrong with the alternator you can suffer anything from a minor issue like dimmer dash lights to more inconvenient problems like engine stalling.

With that in mind, the team here at Post Oak Toyota is here to answer the following questions:

  • How Does an Alternator Work?
  • How Much is an Alternator?
  • How Can You Tell Your Alternator is Bad?

How Does an Alternator Work?

Your alternator is responsible for charging your vehicle’s battery by converting mechanical energy into a current. A serpentine belt controls the system in tune with engine revolutions.

Alternators work whenever the engine is running, but they can still last an incredibly long time – usually 7 to 10 years before maintenance or a replacement is needed. That said, parts like the rotor and brushes may wear down and break over time as you traverse the Edmond roads.

How Much is an Alternator?

The price of an alternator depends a lot on what type of alternator you need:

  • A remanufactured alternator will usually come with a warranty of 1 to 3 years and cost between $300 and $500.
  • A brand new alternator usually carries a limited lifetime warranty and costs between $500 and $1000.

When you need a new alternator, it’s best to visit an authorized service center instead of a Shawnee auto shop. Certified technicians will know exactly what you need for your specific vehicle and can ensure it’s fitted perfectly to ensure safe and long-lasting operation.

How Can You Tell Your Alternator is Bad?

A bad alternator will usually be caught when you bring in your vehicle for routine servicing, but there are red flags you can watch out for as you cover the roads of Norman, including:

  • Dim Dash Lights
  • Illuminated Service Engine Warning Light
  • Strange Noises
  • Electrical Systems Problems
  • Problems Starting
  • Dead Battery

Turn to Post Oak Toyota for Any Service Questions

Whether you’re asking, “what does an alternator do?” or, “how much is an alternator?”, the team at our Midwest City service center can help. Feel free to order parts online or contact us directly for any further advice or assistance.

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