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Intermittent Battery Light

 
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Old 20 Aug 2012, 04:33 pm
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Default Intermittent Battery Light

I have a 2006 Cruiser. Approx 41k miles. Battery approx 5 months old. Original alternator. About 2 wks ago, the battery light came on. Nothing seemed wrong with the car. After turning the engine off and restarting after about 30 secs, the battery light would remain off. I took the car to a repair facility and they did a battery test, starter test and a charging system test. Vehicle passed all three. Battery light still comes on and we just stop and restart the engine and the battery light remains off.

The repair facility said the most likely problem is the voltage regulator, and on Cruisers, it is part of the PCM. They suggested I take the car to the dealer as they are the only ones who can access the PCM.

Based on the info above, does this sound like a potential problem with the voltage regulator?

I also did the "key dance", but did not receive any error codes.

This is my first time using this Cruiser forum, so I hope I provided enough info. I searched the forum for similar symptoms, but could not find any. I am a newbie here, so I might have missed them.
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Old 20 Aug 2012, 05:57 pm
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Smile Re: Intermittent Battery Light

Strip and clean all your body/ engine earth connections and battery terminals, then get underneath it and have a close look at the wiring going to the alternator and plug before you reconnect the battery. I doubt it's a PCM issue and that would be the last thing I would be swapping out, particularly from the Dealer. If it comes to it, buy one from a scrapper and get the Dealer to program it for you
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Old 20 Aug 2012, 06:46 pm
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Default Re: Intermittent Battery Light

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpannerHound View Post
Strip and clean all your body/ engine earth connections and battery terminals, then get underneath it and have a close look at the wiring going to the alternator and plug before you reconnect the battery. I doubt it's a PCM issue and that would be the last thing I would be swapping out, particularly from the Dealer. If it comes to it, buy one from a scrapper and get the Dealer to program it for you
Hello SpannerHound! Thanks so much for your quick response to my question!!

I am a novice when it comes to car repair, but I will try and follow your suggestions regarding cleaning connections, etc.

Thanks again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 20 Aug 2012, 07:23 pm
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Default Re: Intermittent Battery Light

Another thing that you may want to try. Take the car to a trusted dealer, one that won't rip you off, let them know what's going on, and ask if they'll update the software in your PCM. My mom's 2006 Touring was doing the same thing, intermittent battery light. Confirmed the battery and alternator operation, took the car into the dealer, they hooked up to the car, flashed the PCM and possibly other modules. No more battery light.
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Old 20 Aug 2012, 09:34 pm
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Default Re: Intermittent Battery Light

Won't be the PCM. It would be the TIPM that controls all the electrical on the 06 and up. It can be flashed and updated. Be prepared though that if the problem is with the TIPM it is very expensive to replace. The 06 was the first year they switched to it and the Canbus system. They had lots of issues with them.
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Old 21 Aug 2012, 01:59 pm
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Default Re: Intermittent Battery Light

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Originally Posted by neoplanman View Post
Another thing that you may want to try. Take the car to a trusted dealer, one that won't rip you off, let them know what's going on, and ask if they'll update the software in your PCM. My mom's 2006 Touring was doing the same thing, intermittent battery light. Confirmed the battery and alternator operation, took the car into the dealer, they hooked up to the car, flashed the PCM and possibly other modules. No more battery light.
Thanks neoplanman! All cables/connections etc look okay to me. I will be taking it to the closet and only Chry dealer to have it looked at. Unfortunately where I live here in AZ, the closet dealer is 12 miles away. I will post my results once I get the bill. May I ask about how much the repair cost your mother?
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Old 21 Aug 2012, 02:00 pm
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Default Re: Intermittent Battery Light

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray_Dockrey View Post
Won't be the PCM. It would be the TIPM that controls all the electrical on the 06 and up. It can be flashed and updated. Be prepared though that if the problem is with the TIPM it is very expensive to replace. The 06 was the first year they switched to it and the Canbus system. They had lots of issues with them.
Hello Ray Dockrey! Thanks for the info you provided! I will take that info with me to the dealer on Wed so that I know what they are talking about if they go the TIPM route. Thank You Again!!!!!!!!!
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Old 21 Aug 2012, 04:52 pm
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Default Re: Intermittent Battery Light

Eenuu, I can't give you an idea of the cost... it was one of those, drive to my dealer, walk into the garage, and talk direct to my mechanic.... he pulled the car in, hooked up to it, and 10 minutes later everything was flashed. I slipped him a $20 and drove away... And yes, like Ray said, it would be the TIPM, I keep forgetting about that... it's luckly given me little trouble. *knocks on wood*
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Old 21 Aug 2012, 08:22 pm
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Default Re: Intermittent Battery Light

Quote:
Originally Posted by neoplanman View Post
Eenuu, I can't give you an idea of the cost... it was one of those, drive to my dealer, walk into the garage, and talk direct to my mechanic.... he pulled the car in, hooked up to it, and 10 minutes later everything was flashed. I slipped him a $20 and drove away... And yes, like Ray said, it would be the TIPM, I keep forgetting about that... it's luckly given me little trouble. *knocks on wood*
Neoplanman, thanks a bunch my friend! I am keeping my fingers crossed on this one. I am at the mercy of the dealer tomorrow.
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Old 22 Aug 2012, 07:25 pm
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Default Re: Intermittent Battery Light

Our 2001 has been doing this very infrequently since about 2009. It has finally got where it does it now and then. Upon its first episode of doing this years ago, we put in a new generator. I have also swapped batteries between our PTs.

When it does this, it fixes itself typically within seconds. However, twice now, the voltage has gone low enough to set all sorts of issues in motion. So, after incorrectly swapping in a new generator back when this first happened, I decided not to just swap parts any longer. I now have a voltmeter installed in the accessory outlet in the lower center of the console. We can monitor the voltage just like old car dash gauges used to let you do. After the car is started, it normally and temporarily drops to maybe 11 volts then flashes up to 13.2 to 14 volts. Last week, I finally saw it screw up and this time, it dropped into the 9 volt range and stayed.

So, reading the shop manual, you see that the PCM EVR (electronic voltage regulator) grounds the field on the generator and varies the pulse width of the ground to get the voltage it needs/wants depending upon input from the sensors monitoring various temperatures. Therefore, I connected another ground wire to the field terminal and using a switch, I can ground the field temporarily. This will tell us if this issue is being caused by the PCM or the generator.

Everything else on the car is good and clean and since we are the original owners, we know the history of this 75,000 mile garaged PT. My wife is prepared and if the voltage drops after starting or while she is driving, she will flip the switch and the temporary ground will cause the voltage to increase to 15 plus or minus .3 volts. Once we do this and it works, we know it is time for the PCM and not the generator or any bad connection.

Tom

Last edited by VOETOM; 22 Aug 2012 at 07:29 pm.
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