1. Introducing the smashing new Team FIAT T-Shirt !! To order yours click here : Team FIAT T-Shirt

Alternator conks off in Linea TJet - Wrong Diagnosis by Wasan

Discussion in 'Electrical Systems' started by dj.nish, Jun 27, 2013.

  1. dj.nish

    dj.nish Superiore

    Messages:
    543
    Mumbai
    I have a Linea Tjet which will be completing 2 years in Sep 2013. So today evening when I started off I noticed the battery icon light on the dash came on. I hoped it would vanish after a few minutes but it didn't. I landed at an Exide shop and the technician attached a multi-meter to check. The voltage at rest was showing around 11.2 and it went up to 11.4-5 after cranking. He promptly concluded that my alternator has conked off (??) and suggested that I drive to FASS and get it replaced.

    I didn't see any signs of a failing alternator - no weakening horn, no dimming lights, AC was working fine and so was ICE. So I really doubt his statement. At best, I think it could be a loose wiring or something like that. Alternator conking off withing 2 years in a modern car is something I've not heard of. Especially because in 7 years of owning the Getz earlier, there was never an issue with the alternator.

    I reached home, parked and waited for some time. The Car-with-Lock light came on. According to the manual this means the Fiat Code protection is on i.e. the electrical circuitry has an issue in completing the loop. This usually happens if the voltage drops below the minimum.

    AFAIK, this is a battery issue and the same needs to be replaced.

    I called the Exide Batmobile but when they came after a long time, this issue did not happen! Neither the battery icon light not the Car-with-Lock symbol lit up. As if there was no problem to begin with! In fact the car started in half-a-crank, like it always did.

    So what exactly can be the issue here? In case I do need to replace the battery, I prefer to go for Amaron Flo. But I'm seeing two different models. The website says Model no AAM-FL-545171036 is relevant to Fiat Linea 1.4 Petrol while BatteryBhai says AAM-FL-545106036 (45 Ah). So which one is it?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 8, 2013
  2. vj_v1

    vj_v1 Superiore

    Messages:
    933
    Hyderabad
    The Battery icon shows up before the car has started but disappears after the car has stated because the Voltage ones the Alternator is operational is >14 V.

    If the battery icon is showing even when the engine is running, it means that the Voltage is less than a prescribed cutoff value ( i think the cutoff is around 13v), which is evident from the Multimeter readings you mentioned above.

    It indeed looks like an issue with the alternator. Please get it checked at the SC.

    My knowledge is only theoretical so lets see if someone who has experienced this practically on the FIAT is able to answer, since all kind of weird things happen when the battery is dying. Again, as i mentioned if the voltage is really in the 11.X V range when the engine is running, it ought to be an Alternator issue IMO.
    1 person likes this.
  3. bharathj85

    bharathj85 Regolare

    Messages:
    369
    Chennai
    I also think that the battery is the culprit.
  4. bak

    bak Amatore

    Messages:
    139
    Bangalore
    Bangalore
    Grande Punto 1.3
    Normal battery voltage should be ~12.7 V, anything less than 12.4 shows battery is dying. With engine turned voltage should be ~14.2 V. Please get it examined at FASS.
  5. Ravi

    Ravi Staff Member Janitor

    Messages:
    6,001
    Bangalore
    Grande Punto 1.3
    If alternator is gone, battery will die soon. The alternator is very rare in Punto & Linea, but this might be a possibility.
    Even I feel the battery is gone. Some OEM battery does die earlier, and Exide is famous for that.

    Since the battery iconis appearing, better to get it verified at service center.

    What is the OEM battery for T-Jet?
    For FIRE, I think its 45Ah, but I would suggest get 55Ah.

    As I understand AAM-FL-545171036 and AAM-FL-545106036, both are 45Ah model. No difference.
  6. theblack

    theblack Esperto

    Messages:
    2,188
    Bangalore
    My opinion on this is slightly tending towards the alternator simply because 11V at crank is perfectly fine. I've checked my new AMARON(as of now just 1 month old) and even that showed something between 11-12 as i remember .

    Please get the alternator checked it might not be dead as obvious but surely dying. Please pay extra attention to the wiring and see if anything turns out suspicious.
  7. dj.nish

    dj.nish Superiore

    Messages:
    543
    Mumbai
    Update - I visited Wasan Motors, Kandivali yesterday. Car started showing signs of stalling just before I reached there (horn weak, loss of power etc). The technician came and without checking anything, he concluded that battery is dead. We tried to crank the car, but by now battery was totally flat. According to him, it is next to impossible for the alternator to fail in Linea. I requested him a couple of times to at least check the wiring and alternator, but he was way too confident that there's no other issue than the battery.

    I got a new Amaron battery fitted and yes, the battery light did go away. I drove home (~6 kms) without any issue. I was happy that it was a minor issue.

    However the light returned to haunt me in the evening! It came on again and would not turn off. Thankfully this time, the BCM (Car+Lock sign) light didnt come on, which means the battery is not the culprit.

    Has someone else in Mumbai faced this issue? I need to know which FASS to take to. The technician at Wasan was (over) confident and had he checked the alternator/wiring yesterday, so much trouble could have been avoided.
  8. Do you have access to multimeter? you can check the current as well as voltage from alternator.
  9. theblack

    theblack Esperto

    Messages:
    2,188
    Bangalore
    Your response seems a bit mixed to me. Its hard to believe that the voltage was showing 11V and still the technician says the battery is dead.
    Secondly even after the battery change your not in peace.
    Please get the wiring and alternator checked for its health. that should give you a good idea.
    I know of one linea where the battery is so totally gone and when he cranks it , its so obvious as the ignition sound is blatantly evident.
  10. dj.nish

    dj.nish Superiore

    Messages:
    543
    Mumbai
    How is MY response mixed sir? I'm just re-telling what has been told to me by FASS technician. The voltage was checked day-before-yesterday by Exide shop and Batmobile. But since the Exide shop had instilled the doubt of alternator going bad, I thought let me get it checked. Its another matter that the FASS engineer believes that alternator JUST cannot conk off in Linea/Punto.

    I did see all signs of battery dying - ABS warning light to begin with, the EBD failure then airbag failure and before it completely went dead - all possible lights on MID. Secondly, I have had (and read) experiences with Exide OE batteries. 2 years is a fairly good time for them to last, especially considering that my driving has gone down drastically from 1000 kms a month to 250 kms a month.

Share This Page