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Battery Light Is On


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I started the car today evening and the battery indicator on the dash is on. It started without a hitch on the first attempt. It seems to run fine. I turned it ON and OFF a few times to see if there was a starting issue but it seems to start fine on the first attempt everytime. When I noticed that the engine light was on, I checked to see if I had left any light on in the car. I could not find anything. Any suggestion on what could be the cause for the battery indicator becoming on. Is this something I can keep driving with or is this another visit to the mechanic?

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I started the car today evening and the battery indicator on the dash is on. It started without a hitch on the first attempt. It seems to run fine. I turned it ON and OFF a few times to see if there was a starting issue but it seems to start fine on the first attempt everytime. When I noticed that the engine light was on, I checked to see if I had left any light on in the car. I could not find anything. Any suggestion on what could be the cause for the battery indicator becoming on. Is this something I can keep driving with or is this another visit to the mechanic?

There is a problem in the charging system. Your alternator is going (not putting out the proper voltage).

At some point you won't be able to start it. If you can take it in, then get it checked as soon as possible.

It sounds as if it is driveable (at least right now), try taking it to Autozone and have the battery and charging system checked.

I think this is a free service.

steviej

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Took my car to the nearby Wheel Works. Looks like the alternator was only generating 11.4v when the car was running. They changed the alternator which they did under the extended warranty that I had on the car. I got a call saying I should change the battery too as it may have gone through "stress" when it was supplying the additional voltage while the alternator was not. I was not convinced that this was required but I agreed to it. The battery indicator is now off. Waiting for the next light to showup on the dashboard of this car. It may be just this car but I am never buying a Lexus again.

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Took my car to the nearby Wheel Works. Looks like the alternator was only generating 11.4v when the car was running. They changed the alternator which they did under the extended warranty that I had on the car. I got a call saying I should change the battery too as it may have gone through "stress" when it was supplying the additional voltage while the alternator was not. I was not convinced that this was required but I agreed to it.

then you fell for the oldest trick in the car repair business. The battery most likely was all right. Before replacing it, I would have taken it to Autozone and had a free load test done. Then I would have replaced it if it had tested suspect.

Waiting for the next light to showup on the dashboard of this car. It may be just this car but I am never buying a Lexus again.

Are you serious? You condem a car brand becasue of one part failure.

Set your anxieties aside and enjoy your ride. Just becasue it is a Lexus does not mean you are exempt from routine car repairs or troubles. I had a Pontiac SSEi and had to replace the alternator almost every other year due to a poor GM design. I had a 2002 Lexus ES300 for 6 years and never had to replace the alternator or battery let alone have any problem with either. I did have to replace two Air/Fuel sensors, one under warranty, one out of warranty. A Lexus it may be, but when you come down to it, it is a compilation of electronic and mechanical parts no different than the next. I will say the altenator was most likely made by Denso, which makes most parts in the Toyota and Lexus line up. Again, they are subject any number of outside influences. For example: maybe a mechanic tightened the accessory belt a little too tight, this will cause premature failure of an altenator, maybe something got splashed on it (ie, washer fluid, motor oil when an oil change was done, coolant when the system was flushed, water splashing up from a deep puddle or rain storm, etc). Other manufacturers are subject to parts problems, too. For instance in 2002-2003 25% of the Acura TLs had transmission failures in the first two years. The list is long.

steviej

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Took my car to the nearby Wheel Works. Looks like the alternator was only generating 11.4v when the car was running. They changed the alternator which they did under the extended warranty that I had on the car. I got a call saying I should change the battery too as it may have gone through "stress" when it was supplying the additional voltage while the alternator was not. I was not convinced that this was required but I agreed to it.
then you fell for the oldest trick in the car repair business. The battery most likely was all right. Before replacing it, I would have taken it to Autozone and had a free load test done. Then I would have replaced it if it had tested suspect.

I thought I should say no, I agree I could have avoided this.

Waiting for the next light to showup on the dashboard of this car. It may be just this car but I am never buying a Lexus again.
Are you serious? You condem a car brand becasue of one part failure.

Set your anxieties aside and enjoy your ride. Just becasue it is a Lexus does not mean you are exempt from routine car repairs or troubles. I had a Pontiac SSEi and had to replace the alternator almost every other year due to a poor GM design. I had a 2002 Lexus ES300 for 6 years and never had to replace the alternator or battery let alone have any problem with either. I did have to replace two Air/Fuel sensors, one under warranty, one out of warranty. A Lexus it may be, but when you come down to it, it is a compilation of electronic and mechanical parts no different than the next. I will say the altenator was most likely made by Denso, which makes most parts in the Toyota and Lexus line up. Again, they are subject any number of outside influences. For example: maybe a mechanic tightened the accessory belt a little too tight, this will cause premature failure of an altenator, maybe something got splashed on it (ie, washer fluid, motor oil when an oil change was done, coolant when the system was flushed, water splashing up from a deep puddle or rain storm, etc). Other manufacturers are subject to parts problems, too. For instance in 2002-2003 25% of the Acura TLs had transmission failures in the first two years. The list is long.

steviej

It is my frustration with the first two months of owning this car. I have had the o2 sensor changed, the ECM changed, a shorted wiring to the ECM, battery indicator come on. Its my first used car so its could be a vehicle specific but I have not made this many visits to the mechanic ever before and I have owned everything from a Civic, Accord, Geo Prisms, GMC Yukon etc etc. Anyways, let me give it some more time and see if its just a timing thing.

Thank you for your response though its much appreciated, as someone who does not know a whole lot about the internals of a car, it makes it a whole lot better when the mechanic tells you things consistent with what you hear on the board.

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It is my frustration with the first two months of owning this car. I have had the o2 sensor changed, the ECM changed, a shorted wiring to the ECM, battery indicator come on. Its my first used car so its could be a vehicle specific but I have not made this many visits to the mechanic ever before and I have owned everything from a Civic, Accord, Geo Prisms, GMC Yukon etc etc. Anyways, let me give it some more time and see if its just a timing thing.

It helps if you mention all the problems before condeming the car. Anywho, Toyota had a rash of bad air/fuel sensors from 2001 until about 2004. Even local papers in my area (car column, etc) mentioned it occasionally. I got hit with two and these buggers ain't cheap. Luckily I only had to pay for one and installed it myself. I do hear your concerns with a used car. Sometimes we feel like we bought someone else's problems. I know, I have been there. We have no idea how the previous owner maintained, or worse yet, didn't maintain the vehicle.

good luck.

steviej

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