Reader Question: I was driving my 1999 Ford Ranger Sport 3.0 to work one day last week. My bright lights cut off. I then switched to dim lights and they worked fine.
I also noticed that the battery light came on and the battery level indicator went to High. My truck ran fine until I came home later that day and overnight the battery went dead.
I put it on charge for a few hours and it would never get a charge. I thought it may be just the battery itself so I took it to Wal-Mart and swapped it for another battery.
After that, I put the new battery in my truck and the same thing happened. There was no bright lights and high voltage on battery. I do not think it is the alternator because when I turn the truck on the interior lights gets brighter and when I turn it off, they get dim. Therefore, that should mean that the alternator is creating power when running.
I am not an experienced mechanic so I do not know what it could be.
Please help me out.
That kinda does sound like a charging system type of problem. I would suggest you visit a real mechanic shop (not Wal-Mart) or if possible, a starter and alternator rebuilding shop in your area for a complete electrical system test.
You probably have an internal problem with the voltage regulator inside the alternator. Getting your alternator rebuilt or exchanging it for a rebuilt unit would be the most economical option for you.
Personally, I have not seen this exact complaint in my shop, so if the repair is not an alternator problem please let me know so I can update this post to help the next person.
Reader Updates: Thanks for you help. I did get it to an alternator shop where I live and it was in fact the regulator.
It seems that the regulator was allowing my truck to get too much charge and that is what caused the headlights to go out.
What happened is it was supplying so much energy that it actually blew the headlights so I had to replace the headlights also. It also overcharged my battery and killed it. So now, I have it fixed and it only cost about US$50.
So, thanks for you help.