How Long Does an Alternator Take to Charge a Battery (In Details) - The Power Facts (2023)

An alternator is used to charge a battery while the engine is running. The average time it takes for an alternator to fully charge a battery is about two hours. However, this time can vary depending on the type of battery and the size of the alternator.

How Long Does an Alternator Take to Charge a Battery (In Details) - The Power Facts (1)

If you are using a small battery, it may only take an hour for the alternator to fully charge it. If you are using a large battery, it may take up to three hours for the alternator to fully charge with cables.

An alternator is a device that generates electricity to power the electrical system in your car. The battery provides power to the starter and ignition system, and the alternator keeps the battery charged during operation. If your battery dies, it’s usually because the alternator has failed.

How long does it take for an alternator to charge a dead battery? It depends on how discharged the battery is. A completely dead battery may take up to 4 hours to charge.

If the battery is only partially discharged, it could be fully charged in as little as 30 minutes.

Will Alternator Charge Battery While Idling?

The answer to this question is a resounding yes! Your alternator will charge your battery while idling. In fact, it is one of the best ways to keep your battery charged and prevent it from dying prematurely.

There are a few things to keep in mind, however. First, make sure that your alternator is in good working condition. If it isn’t, then it won’t be able to charge your battery as effectively.

Second, be aware that some newer vehicles have what’s called an idle stop system. This means that the engine will automatically turn off when you come to a stop, so your alternator won’t have a chance to do its job. However, most vehicles still allow the alternator to charge the battery even when the engine is off, so don’t worry too much about this feature if you’re not sure whether or not your car has it.

In short, yes – alternators do charge batteries while idling. Just make sure that yours is in good working order and don’t worry if your car has an idle stop system; most likely, the alternator will still be able to do its job even when the engine isn’t running.

How Long Does a Car Have to Run to Charge a Dead Battery?

Most car batteries are 12-volt lead-acid batteries. A battery has six cells, and each cell produces two volts for a total of 12 volts. When a battery is fully charged, all six cells produce 2.1 volts for a total voltage of 12.6 volts or higher.

(Video) Charging a dead car battery using the cars alternator

When the engine is off, the battery supplies power to the car’s electrical system; when the engine is running, the alternator charges the battery and powers the electrical system at the same time.The amount of current a lead-acid battery can deliver decreases as the temperature goes down, so it’s important to keep your battery warm in cold weather (below freezing). If you live in an area with very cold winters, you may need to install a block heater to maintain optimal operating temperatures for your car’s engine and battery.

A lead-acid battery will self-discharge at about 3% per month when not being used, so it’s important to keep it charged if you’re not going to be driving your car regularly. You can hook up a trickle charger to maintain its charge while in storage.If your car’s battery is completely discharged (0 volts), it will take about 6 hours to charge it back up using a standard 10 amp charger; if you’re using a faster charger that delivers 15 amps or more, it will only take about 4 hours.

Does Alternator Charge Battery When Car is Off?

An alternator is a device that produces electricity to charge a car’s battery and power its electrical system when the engine is running. The charging process begins when the ignition switch is turned on, sending an electric current to the alternator. As the engine runs, a pulley belt connected to the crankshaft turns the alternator’s internal components at high speed.

This movement produces electricity, which flows through wires to the battery. The battery stores this power until it’s needed to operate lights, start the engine or run other electrical devices in the car.If you’re wondering whether your alternator charges your battery while your car is off, the answer is no.

Once you turn off your engine, there’s no longer any mechanical energy available to power the alternator and produce electricity. However, some cars have a feature called “idle-stop,” which automatically shuts off the engine when it’s been idling for a set period of time (usually 30 seconds to 1 minute). In these cases, turning on your headlights or opening your door will usually trigger the engine to start back up and begin recharging the battery.

How Long Does It Take an Alternator to Charge a 12 Volt Battery?

It typically takes around 4-6 hours for an alternator to charge a 12 volt battery. The charging time will depend on the amperage rating of the alternator and the condition of the battery. If the battery is in good condition, it should be able to hold a charge for longer than if it was in poor condition.

How Long Does an Alternator Take to Charge a Battery (In Details) - The Power Facts (2)

How Long Does It Take an Alternator to Charge a Boat Battery?

Assuming you have a typical 12 volt alternator and battery on your boat, it should take about 6-8 hours to fully charge your battery. This obviously depends on how fast your alternator is running and how depleted your battery is to begin with. If you’re starting with a completely dead battery, it could take up to 12 hours to get things back up and running.

In any case, it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on your charging system and make sure everything is in good working order before heading out onto the water. A little bit of preventative maintenance can go a long way in avoiding costly repairs or replacements down the road.

How Long Does It Take an Alternator to Drain a Battery?

You may have experienced a dead battery in your car before. You turn the key, but the engine won’t start. So, you know it’s time to jump start your car or replace the battery.

But do you know what actually causes a dead battery? It might be your alternator. An alternator is what charges your battery while you drive.

If it isn’t working properly, it can drain your battery and cause it to die. So how long does it take an alternator to drain a battery? It depends on how old the alternator is, how well it’s been maintained, and how much electricity it’s putting out.

(Video) Deep Cycle Battery Charging with your Alternator: The 3 Best Options explained [+ Wiring Diagram]

A new alternator shouldn’t drain a battery overnight. An older one that isn’t working as well could drains a battery in just a few hours if left unchecked. If you think your alternator might be draining your battery, there are a few things you can do to check:

– Check the voltage output of the alternator with a voltmeter. It should be between 13-14 volts when the engine is running at idle. If it’s lower than that, there could be an issue with the Alternator Voltage Regulator (AVR).

– Inspect the drive belt that turns the Alternator pulley. Make sure it’s not loose or damage the battery while charging. – Have someone else drive your car while you monitor the voltmeter.

Can an Alternator Charge a Dead Battery?

If your car battery is dead, your alternator can’t charge it. Here’s why: The alternator produces alternating current (AC). This current goes to the rectifier, which changes it into direct current (DC) and then to the battery.

If the battery is dead, there is no voltage to power the rectifier. So while your alternator may be working, it can’t charge a dead battery.

How Long to Drive to Charge a Dead Battery?

If your car battery dies, you’re not going anywhere fast. But how long does it take to charge a dead battery? The answer depends on a few factors, including the type of charger you’re using and the condition of your battery.

Generally speaking, it will take about six hours to charge a dead car battery with a standard household charger. If you’re using a faster charger, such as one made for jump-starting cars, you can expect to reduce that time by half. And if your battery is in good condition, it will charge up more quickly than one that’s damaged or old.

Of course, the best way to avoid having a dead battery in the first place is to keep it topped off with regular charging. That way, you’ll never have to worry about being stranded with a flat tire and no way to call for help.

How Long Does It Take to Charge a Car Battery After a Jump?

If your car battery has died, you may be wondering how long it will take to charge it up again. The good news is that, in most cases, a dead battery can be recharged fairly quickly.The exact time it will take to charge a car battery after a jump start will depend on a few factors, such as the type of battery and the charging system in your vehicle.

However, most batteries can be fully charged within 4-6 hours.So, if you find yourself with a dead battery, don’t despair! A quick jump start should have you back on the road in no time.

Alternator to Charge Battery

If your car has been sitting for a while, you may need to jump start the battery. But what if the battery is completely dead? In this case, you’ll need to use an alternator to charge the battery.

(Video) Symptoms, Causes Of Alternator Overcharging, And How To Fix It

An alternator is a device that converts mechanical energy into electrical energy. It consists of a rotating shaft that drives a series of magnets around a stationary coil of wire. As the magnets rotate, they induce an electric current in the coil.

This current is then sent to the battery, where it is used to recharge it.The process of using an alternator to charge a battery is relatively simple. First, make sure that the engine is turned off and disconnect the negative terminal of the battery.

Next, connect one end of the charging cable to the positive terminal of the alternator and the other end to the positive terminal of the battery.

How to Charge a Car Battery?

One of the most common questions we get here at Battery World is “How do I charge my car battery?” Whether you have a standard 12 volt lead acid battery or a high performance AGM battery, the process is essentially the same. In this blog post, we’ll take you through the steps on how to charge a car battery correctly, so you can get back on the road as soon as possible.

Before we begin, it’s important to note that if your battery is more than three years old, it may be time for a replacement. Even with proper care and maintenance, car batteries only have a lifespan of about four to five years. With that being said, let’s get started!

The first thing you’ll need to do is determine what type of charger you need. If your battery is completely dead, you’ll need a “jump start” which provides a quick burst of power to get the engine going. Once the engine is running, you can then use a standard charger to replenish the power in your battery.

Most new cars come with an integrated charging system that does both tasks automatically – but if yours doesn’t, don’t worry! You can purchase a stand-alone charger at any automotive store. Once you have your jump starter or charger hooked up, simply follow the instructions that came with it.

For replace AGM with lead acid batteries, it’s typically best to not let them discharge below 50% before recharging – so keep an eye on the gauge and stop charging once it reaches that point. AGM batteries are much more sensitive and should never be allowed to dip below 80%. Again – refer to your charger’s instructions for specific guidance.

And that’s all there is too it!

Does a Car Battery Charge Faster When Driving?

If you’ve ever been stranded with a dead battery, you know the feeling of desperation. Will your car start if you just turn it on and drive? The answer is maybe.

Here’s what you need to know about charging a car battery while driving.First, some basics: Your car’s alternator charges the battery while the engine is running. The battery provides power to start the engine and run accessories like the headlights, radio, and air conditioning.

When those accessories are turned off, the alternator can charge the battery faster.So, if your car has been sitting for awhile and the battery is dead, starting the engine and driving around will help charge it up faster than letting it idle in your driveway. But there are some caveats.

If your battery is completely dead (meaning it won’t even turn on the engine), then driving around won’t do any good because there’s nothing for the alternator to charge. In that case, you’ll need to use jumper cables or a portable charger to jump-start your car before hitting the road.Also, keep in mind that driving at high speeds won’t necessarily charge your battery any faster than driving at lower speeds.

(Video) How to Test an Alternator


It’s a common question: how long does it take to charge an alternator? The answer, unfortunately, is not as simple as a straight number. Instead, it depends on a few factors including the type of battery, the charging system, and whether or not the engine is running.

However, there are some general guidelines you can follow to get an idea of how long it will take.

Type of Battery: There are two main types of batteries – lead acid and lithium ion. Lead acid batteries are typically found in older cars while lithium ion batteries are becoming more popular in newer vehicles. Both have their own charging times.

Lead Acid Battery: A lead acid battery will usually take between 4-6 hours to fully charge. This time can be shortened if the battery is charged at a higher voltage but it’s not recommended to do this on a regular basis as it can shorten the overall lifespan of the battery.

Additionally, if the battery is very low (below 10%), it could take up to 12 hours to reach a full charge.

Lithium Ion Battery: Lithium ion batteries charge much faster than lead acid batteries – usually in around 2 hours or less. However, they also require special chargers that deliver specific voltages and currents which aren’t always available in standard garages or repair shops.

Additionally, if the battery is very low (below 20%), it could take up to 4 hours to reach a full charge.

Charging System: The type of charging system your car has will also affect how long it takes to charge an alternator. Older cars typically have what’s called an external regulator which means that the charging voltage is regulated by an external device (usually located under the hood).

This system isn’t as efficient as newer ones and can often result in longer charging times . . . up to 8 hours or more! Newer cars have what’s called an internal regulator which means that the voltage is regulated by electronic components inside the alternator itself. This system is much more efficient and usually results in shorter charging times – around 6 hours or less depending on the size of the battery being charged.

Table of Contents

(Video) Car Alternator Battery and Charging System Testing (Toyota/Lexus)


How long does it take for an alternator to start charging? ›

Remember: After you've done a jump start, you'll need to keep the vehicle's engine running for around 30 minutes to allow the alternator time to charge the battery sufficiently.

How much does the alternator charge the battery? ›

If the alternator is working correctly, it not only supplies power to the vehicle, it also sends voltage to the battery to charge it. Most batteries have a voltage of around 12 volts, whereas the alternator's output is between 13 and 15 volts.

Will alternator charge battery while idling? ›

Do Car Batteries Charge While Idling? A car with an idling engine will still recharge your battery, but at a much lower rate than if you were driving. The reason for this is that modern cars have a lot of additional electronics that use up power.

How long do you have to wait to run a car after replacing the alternator? ›

Ideally, you should drive the car around for 30 minutes to allow the alternator to charge the battery to a good level. Even after that if you still have a flat battery, it could be an issue with the alternator.

Will alternator fully charge battery? ›

An alternator cannot do everything a charger can. For starters, an alternator can charge a battery with a low charge, but it cannot charge a dead battery. As we said above, the battery's job is to start the engine and then work as an electrical load balancer.

How long does alternator charge battery? ›

Generally, if you can keep your engine RPM up, your alternator will charge your battery at a faster rate. If you are driving on a motorway, you should be able to charge your car battery in 30 minutes. If you are driving in the city, it may take an hour or more.

Does alternator charge battery all the time? ›

While the battery supplies the electricity needed for that initial spark, it only has enough power to get the car a few miles down the road, and that's where the alternator comes in—it continually charges the car battery while the car is in motion while also simultaneously operating all the electronic components of the ...

Can alternator drain battery while sitting? ›

A corroded or defective alternator diode will faultily continue charging the circuit even when the car off. This, in turn, will drain your car battery and cause the car not to start.

Can an alternator drain a battery while running? ›

It's rare, but it's possible. A draw on the battery only occurs if there's a problem with either a component in the alternator itself or connections to it.

What to do after you put in a new alternator? ›

What to Look for After Getting a New Alternator Installed
  1. Check the Battery. ...
  2. Check the Alternator's Wires and Cables. ...
  3. Check the Fan and Pulley. ...
  4. Confirm You Used the Right Hardware. ...
  5. Confirm the Speed. ...
  6. Finish By Testing the Alternator. ...
  7. Get a New Alternator at Massey Yardley CDJR.
Sep 26, 2021

Why is my brand new alternator not charging my battery? ›

Your alternator won't charge the battery if the diodes have a burnout. They'll die because of overheating, poor wiring, or electrical overload. Most of the time, one or two diodes may fail, and the others keep changing power flow. It will become worse once you load your car.

What else should be replaced when replacing alternator? ›

When replacing and alternator, other upgrades are worth doing too. Go ahead and change the serpentine belt, tensioner and idler roller when replacing an alternator on your car or truck.

How long will a car battery hold a charge without alternator? ›

Depends. In the daytime with an older car with few electrical loads you can run for a few days and not miss it. Drive at night with the headlights on, it'll go dead fairly quickly.

Will a car battery recharge itself overnight? ›

Simply put, no car battery, whether healthy or dead, can charge itself. It always requires an external power source to get charged. Can Dead Batteries be Charged? Once a car battery is dead, the alternator will fail to recharge it completely.

How long does an alternator take to charge a dead battery? ›

Generally, it usually takes between 30 minutes and an hour for an alternator to fully charge a battery if you are driving. If you want to charge your battery idle (when the engine is running but you're not driving), then it's going to take longer.

How do I get my alternator to start charging? ›

Best Ways to Fix an Alternator that isn't Charging Battery
  1. Replace the Alternator. Ensure you replace the item if you have the right skills. ...
  2. Get a New Battery. Before getting a new battery, check on the battery's current and voltage using a multimeter. ...
  3. Change the ECU. ...
  4. Get New Fuses. ...
  5. Fix a New Serpentine Belt.

How do you know if your alternator is acting up? ›

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

Can you start a car with a dead alternator? ›

If your alternator is dead, the car might start but will be running solely on the battery. Can you jumpstart a car with a bad alternator? It is possible in some cases to jumpstart a vehicle that has a faulty alternator, as long as the battery has enough of a charge to keep running.

Does alternator charge battery when car is off? ›

Your car's battery holds a charge, but the alternator works to recharge it while the vehicle is on. That's why you can drive all day long without a problem but leaving the lights on overnight will drain the battery.

Why is my battery not charging but my alternator is good? ›

A blown alternator fuse

Either way, if you've got a blown fuse, you can very much expect your battery to not charge even if you've got a working new battery and a fine alternator. To check if your car's fuses are all right, simply open the car's fuse box and see which fuses are not powering up together with the rest.

Why won t my car start after replacing battery and alternator? ›

It can be anything from fuel pump relay issues, a blown fuse, a weakened fuel pump motor, or a dead fuel pump. In other cases, there may also be problems associated with the car's fuel injector, even if the pump works fine.

What is the most common problem with an alternator? ›

One of the most common problems you're likely to experience with an alternator is a failure in the bearings. There are needle bearings in the alternator that allow the rotor to freely spin inside the housing, and those bearings can break down over time as a result of exposure to heat and dirt.

How does a car act when alternator is bad? ›

Signs of a Bad Alternator

Some of the things to look for are no-starting and trouble starting, dimming lights and problems with stereo system output. If your car starts but stalls when you're underway, your battery is probably not being recharged due to a faulty alternator.

Can AutoZone test your alternator? ›

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.

Does tapping on alternator work? ›

The Do Nots of the Alternator

Your car will just not start. Some people believe that you can just tap the alternator with a hammer to get it to operate. You should not do this because it will damage the part and you might even damage the surrounding parts to the car, resulting is a large car repair bill.

Can jumping a car wrong ruin your alternator? ›

The alternator's design makes it fairly impervious to negative effects from jump starting. However, the alternator can sustain instant damage if the polarity of the clamp connections is mistakenly reversed.

What can damage an alternator? ›

There are several issues that can ruin an alternator:
  • Using jumper cables wrong,
  • Overloading the charging system with too many accessories,
  • Leaking fluid, or.
  • A tight belt that can damage bearings.
Jul 26, 2021


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