Acura TL Charging System Check - Troubleshooting Guide - Ask Your Auto Mechanic (2023)

Anyone who owns an Acura TL knows that a full-size compact car pays off. In 2005, it was the number two selling luxury sedan in the United States. It has a number of perks, but as production on the car line ended in 2014, anyone who has one is now looking at the age of their Acura TL.

An older vehicle will need some basic maintenance to keep it running. One of those items that requires special attention when a car reaches high mileage is theCheck the charging systemAcura TL. The charging system provides power to the battery to keep the car running.

It is important to know what the billing system is and how it works on Acura TL. This can help you diagnose problems and find a good mechanic.

Define billing system.

Every car has a charging system.but each model may have a slightly different configuration. The purpose of the charging system issend electricityto the battery, which not only keeps the car running, but also keeps things like the lights, radio, heater, and other accessories running.

The system works with the voltage regulator or control module that directs the alternator to charge the battery when the battery charge appears to be low.The battery is charged while driving via the alternator and regulator.

therefore athe car starts to workbetter if you ride it when someone jumps out of a dead battery.

Differences in car models.

Older cars like the Acura TL have a voltage regulator as part of the charging system. Newer models from other brands use an electronic control unit (ECU). The ECU is integrated into the computer system.

Acura TL Charging System Check - Troubleshooting Guide - Ask Your Auto Mechanic (1)

Other parts that make up a typical charging system are:

  • wiring
  • a battery
  • voltage regulator

What does the light on my dashboard mean?

The Acura TL has aalert lightincluded in your built-in diagnostics.Detects when battery voltage is low. This indicates that the car may misfire, stall or not start at all.

Some other signs that your Acura TL may have a charging error are:

  • Car will not start or has difficulty starting.
  • Interior light or bell does not work.
  • There may be a clicking noise from the ignition and there appears to be a misfire.

Acuras has some other indicators. If it doesn't start or if the battery light stays on,You probably have an electrical problem.EM.

Charging Problems with an Acura TL

However, some things will happen to an Acura that is unique.the battery is not receiving the required power.These include:

  • Car stalls repeatedly and has trouble restarting
  • The car doesn't last long before dying again.
  • Engine start is slow.
  • The battery light is always on.
Acura TL Charging System Check - Troubleshooting Guide - Ask Your Auto Mechanic (2)

This is an important point to fix, because eventually it will crash or not start at all. So you either have to fix it yourself or have it towed to a mechanic.It is much easier to diagnose and correct the problem before it becomes serious.

What could be the problem?

Poor performance is usually due to abad alternator.However, it can be expensive to fix, so it's best to rule out other problems that are easier to fix before taking it to a mechanic to have the alternator replaced.


A common problem in such situations is a faulty battery.Even when a battery is new, it can still come from a bad batch. You can check the battery voltage with a battery tester or charging system analyzer.

To check for yourself, open the hood and remove the battery cover to access the terminals. Connect the positive lead to the red lead and the negative lead to the black lead, then run the battery and alternator test with the analyzer following its instructions.

An easy way to test the battery for those who don't have a battery tester or aren't mechanically inclined is to remove the battery from the car and take it to an auto parts store to have it tested and charged. Some retail stores offer both for free and can tell you if you have a dead cell battery.

Fixing this issue is easy as all you have to do is do the followingget a new battery. However, if the battery is fine and charging, then you should look further to see where the problem lies.

Possible Problems in an Acura Charging System

There are a number of other possible reasons for a charging failure on an Acura TL. These problems can include:

  • A bad ground connection to the battery.
  • a bad relay
  • a blown fuse
  • a bad alternator

How to keep looking for trouble

Assuming the battery is good, it's time to check the battery's ground connection. This is where the wiring connects to the battery terminals.Sometimes they are loose or corroded and need cleaning.A loose connection can be easily tightened with pliers.

Cleaning the connections is also not a problem. Just take an old toothbrush, wet it and dip it in baking soda. Rub around the connectors to remove any corrosion. Clean it.

Acura TL Charging System Check - Troubleshooting Guide - Ask Your Auto Mechanic (3)

Check your car again by starting it and see if the warning light is still on. Step on the accelerator to see if he dies. If it stays on, continue with the inspection.

(Video) Honda check charging system || Honda Accord Check Charge system indication on

Worn or torn belts can also be a problem on most cars when it comes to charging systems.This will cause the alternator to malfunction, which meansless energy goes to the batterycause a slowdown.

There is usually a belt that drives everything on a later model car, so it's pretty easy to check if it's slipping or worn out. If it needs to be replaced, you can take it to a mechanic.

You can also check the voltage regulator with amultimeter.put thismultimeterAttach the battery posts plus to red and minus to black. Your car's voltage should be around 12 volts when it's off.

Start the car and watch the voltage rise. It must be between 13.8 and 13.9 to safely feed the battery. As you increase engine RPM by stepping on the throttle to make the engine run harder, the voltage should stop increasing once you reach 1500-2000 RPM.

The voltage should be between 13.8 and 14.2, but no more. If it gets to 15 or more, or below 13.8, there is something wrong with the voltage regulator and it should be replaced.

With everything checked, only the alternator remains. You can check this with a charging system analyzer, but even without checking it yourself, if everything is normal and working, then this is the only thing that could be wrong.

alternator fuses

One thing many mechanics forget to check is thatfour fuses in the alternator.Many mechanics just change the alternator without checking the fuses. However, you must insist that everyone be tested.

A single blown fuse will prevent proper alternator and battery power.


Always ask your mechanic if he knows the process for this service.An inexperienced mechanic can ruin other parts of the car by checking a fuse the wrong way.

How do I know it's not the starter?

a bad startIt has a squealing noise when you turn on the ignition. There is no loud sound when there is a problem with the charging system. The car just won't start. Is dead. There may be a clicking sound, if any.

Acura TL Charging System Check - Troubleshooting Guide - Ask Your Auto Mechanic (4)

How much does it cost to fix a charging issue?

Mechanics charge different fees, and sometimes their fees depend on the car model. Some car models are harder to work with than others with new computer systems, sensors and all.

A voltage regulator repair can cost between $350 and $385.Parts are around $213 and the rest is labor.

Replacing an alternator isn't cheap.It can cost anywhere from $500 to $1,000 depending on parts and labor costs.

Replacing a fuse in an alternator is much cheaper.It can cost less than $100 depending on the type of car you have.


Owning a car means you have some responsibility for keeping all the parts working. One of them is the charging system, and if you don't pay attention, you'll eventually bring the car to a halt.

(Video) Charging System Problem - Voltage Drops

It doesn't cost much to keep a charging system running, and it can cost even less if you can diagnose and fix simple things yourself. Knowing that you will eventually incur these costs will help you plan financially for them and help you do the necessary research to get the most out of your Acura TL.

File:What does imminent ignition of my car's service engine mean?


What does it mean when my Acura TL says check charging system? ›

What's happening when the battery/check charging system light comes on? Whenever this light goes on, it means that the vehicle is running solely on battery power. If the problem continues and your charging system fails, the battery won't be able to recharge and it will soon run down, leaving you with a dead battery.

Why does my car keep saying check charging system? ›

If your car's “check charging system” warning light is illuminated, it means that there is a problem with your vehicle's starting/charging system, which is usually indicative of an issue with your alternator, accumulator, or the battery itself.

What could cause charging system failure? ›

Another common problem that can cause the charging system to fail is a broken alternator belt or one that is worn so bad it slips badly. If the alternator works properly but the belt doesn't spin it fast enough, the voltage output can drop and cause the system to act as though the alternator doesn't work.

Can you drive with charging system fault? ›

The charging light means that your car is running on a limited supply of energy, so driving while it's on could leave you stranded at any time. So while it might not be strictly unsafe, it's unwise to drive when the charging system light is on as your car could stop from a dead battery at any time.

How long can you drive with a charging system light on? ›

If your battery light turns on while driving, you'll have about 30-60 minutes to drive before your car starts to stall. There are a number of things that could cause your car's battery to deteriorate and one is leaving your car headlights on while the engine isn't in operation.

How much does it cost to fix the charging system in a car? ›

This repair cost can average between $1,000 and $1,500, more if the car needs completely rewired. Alternator replacement is another doozy, coming in at an average of $500, plus labor and materials.

Can AutoZone test your charging system? ›

Remember that AutoZone can help with any of your Battery, Alternator, or charging system needs through replacement parts or testing. If you need additional help, browse through our Preferred Shops in your local area to help you diagnose and do the job!

What are the four common symptoms caused by charging system problems? ›

Overcharging - Battery shows signs of heat damage, fluid leaking, or gives off acidic smell.
  • bad voltage regulator.
  • bad connection to regulator/computer.
  • bad connection to/blown dash warning bulb.

What are the four tests done to check a charging system? ›

It is important to check ALL these systems any time you are working with the charging system.
  • #1) Test the Battery. ...
  • #2) Test the Starting Circuit. ...
  • #3) Test for Parasitic Draw. ...
  • #4) Test the Charging System. ...
  • How do you check for too much Power? ...
  • 1) Run the engine with all electric accessories Turned OFF.

How do I know if my alternator is bad? ›

7 Signs of a Failing Alternator
  1. Dim or Overly Bright Lights. ...
  2. Dead Battery. ...
  3. Slow or Malfunctioning Accessories. ...
  4. Trouble Starting or Frequent Stalling. ...
  5. Growling or Whining Noises. ...
  6. Smell of Burning Rubber or Wires. ...
  7. Battery Warning Light on Dash.
Aug 24, 2020

What fuse controls the charging system? ›

The primary alternator fuse (or fusible link) will blow whenever there's excessive current flow due to a short circuit or other malfunction. When that happens, the charging system will no longer work as it should—and you'll begin to notice a variety of problems. An example of a primary alternator fuse.

Which is the first step in diagnosing charging system faults? ›

The first step to diagnosing any problem in the starting and charging system is to make sure the battery is fully charged, and in good condition.

Can a blown fuse cause battery light to come on? ›

A blown fuse is another possible cause of the battery light coming on. If there is a problem with the electrical system in your car, it can cause the fuse to blow. If you think that your fuse might be blown, you'll need to take it to a mechanic or a repair shop to have it replaced.

What would cause a charge light to come on? ›

An illuminated battery indicator can be caused by a number of issues, including: A loose or corroded battery cable. A problem with the alternator or voltage regulator. Damaged cells or plates inside the battery.

How do I know if my battery cables need to be replaced? ›

Symptoms of Bad Battery Cables
  1. Your car's interior lighting dims.
  2. Your engine is slow to crank.
  3. Your engine fails to start.
  4. You hear a clicking noise when you turn the key, but the engine won't start.
  5. Your car has lost electricity.
  6. Your engine stalls if you don't get your car moving.
Feb 12, 2021

Does AutoZone charge for battery charging? ›

If your car battery is having trouble, AutoZone store associates can test or charge your battery for free.

Is a charging system and an alternator the same thing? ›

The modern charging system consists of the alternator, battery, wiring and electronic control unit (ECU). Older cars may have a regulator, but in newer cars, that is now part of the car's computer. The alternator creates electrical power to run accessories and recharge the battery.

Can AutoZone test my alternator without removing it? ›

Alternator Testing

Dim or flickering lights, dead battery, battery light on, trouble starting or other issues. How to get your alternator tested: Just to visit a nearby AutoZone. We'll test the alternator while it's still in the vehicle.

Can I get my alternator tested for free? ›

Many auto parts stores will test alternators, starters and batteries for free, though you will have to remove the alternator to have it tested at an auto parts store. Once connected to a terminal, an alternator should test between 12 and 13.5 volts.

Does O'Reilly check charging system? ›

Our experienced parts professionals can test your starter or alternator while it's still on your vehicle. If your vehicle won't start and you believe the starter or alternator may be the culprit, simply bring the part to an O'Reilly Auto Parts store near you and we would be happy to bench test it for you.

How do you reset a battery charger? ›

Plug the charger into AC power, and use the Mode button to put the unit into Standby with the Orange Power LED lit, and then unplug the charger from AC power again.

How do you reset an electric car charger? ›

  1. Open the web user interface of the EV Charger.
  2. Select [EV Charger] as device.
  3. Go to "Menu > Settings > Device Properties" and click the link at the bottom ("If you want to reset the device to factory settings, click here."

Is there a fuse for the charging system? ›

The primary alternator fuse (or fusible link) will blow whenever there's excessive current flow due to a short circuit or other malfunction. When that happens, the charging system will no longer work as it should—and you'll begin to notice a variety of problems. An example of a primary alternator fuse.


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