Hemi Truck Club banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone!

I know this is an old issue and there are several people who have experienced this problem with their 2003 5.7's also. I wanted to give you my twisted tale...

I had the alternator take a dump in Jan of 20. Replaced it and had an odd issue, the idiot lights on the dash would flicker, bells and dingers would sound off, and the radio would hiccup and sometimes reboot. (Aftermarket Kenwood 2-DIN touchscreen head unit) The speakers would pop when it did this. On two separate occasions it pegged the volt gage and was over-volting and then would straighten out. Now, at NO time did I experience the other symptom which was watching all the analog gauges dance. The Tach, Speedo, Volts (except for a few instances), Fuel, Oil Pressure and Temp didn't move. So, flickering idiot lights, pretty bells and chimes, no dancing needles. Symptoms didn't match most of the information I had read about on this forum.

The problem continued and became more frequent so I replaced the alternator again in Nov of 20 thinking the voltage regulator was bad on the previous one installed in Jan. The truck straightened out for a bit and then started up again, and then the problems became more frequent and worse. Now the volt gage would peg and stay there while the dash lit up and sang and the radio would again pop and reboot. NOW the only way to "reset" it was to put the truck in neutral while I was driving, shut it down, restart it, and put it back in drive.

THEN... soon after that as I was slowing down to make a turn, the RPM's dropped and the truck almost stalled out. The gauges showed the RPM drop, but again, no dancing needles, but yes, the idiot lights on the dash kept lighting up like a Christmas tree, with bells and dingers going off. It was a light and musical symphony!

Then I had a hairball idea. I immediately drove to AutoZone and had them check the battery.

100% charged, bad battery.

Their stress test machine showed that the battery was charged, but still came up as bad. I replaced the battery and I have not had any issues since. NONE!

Now, I know what you're thinking, I should have had some warning that the battery was taking a dump: dragging starter, volt meter showing low voltage, dim interior lighting, dim headlights...something. Not in this instance. This is the first time in my life I have ever experienced a battery issue and not know it was a battery issue. With the battery being maintenance free there wasn't any way to check the levels either, so no battery symptoms and no clues. And for those who will ask this question, yes, the battery terminals are spotless and corrosion free.

Something else. I'm not unconvinced now that the battery did something and jacked up the first alternator. When the alternator went out, the volts pegged 0 in an instant, and the "check gauges" light popped on. Absolutely no charging what-so-ever, and it happened in a blink of an eye. I can't prove it, but sometimes in hindsight, you just know its true.

LESSON: Always check the battery first! Would have saved me 10 months of misery.

SO...there it is, my story about my problem. I hope this helps someone in the future with their issues.

-HemiBat
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
You are not the first to be bamboozaled by a bad battery , these trucks cando all kinds of wierd shit when the battery is defective. Thanks for sharing,hopefully others will benefit from it .
 

·
Super Moderator
'05 Boosted 426 & '14 4X4
Joined
·
12,685 Posts
Hey everyone!

I know this is an old issue and there are several people who have experienced this problem with their 2003 5.7's also. I wanted to give you my twisted tale...

I had the alternator take a dump in Jan of 20. Replaced it and had an odd issue, the idiot lights on the dash would flicker, bells and dingers would sound off, and the radio would hiccup and sometimes reboot. (Aftermarket Kenwood 2-DIN touchscreen head unit) The speakers would pop when it did this. On two separate occasions it pegged the volt gage and was over-volting and then would straighten out. Now, at NO time did I experience the other symptom which was watching all the analog gauges dance. The Tach, Speedo, Volts (except for a few instances), Fuel, Oil Pressure and Temp didn't move. So, flickering idiot lights, pretty bells and chimes, no dancing needles. Symptoms didn't match most of the information I had read about on this forum.

The problem continued and became more frequent so I replaced the alternator again in Nov of 20 thinking the voltage regulator was bad on the previous one installed in Jan. The truck straightened out for a bit and then started up again, and then the problems became more frequent and worse. Now the volt gage would peg and stay there while the dash lit up and sang and the radio would again pop and reboot. NOW the only way to "reset" it was to put the truck in neutral while I was driving, shut it down, restart it, and put it back in drive.

THEN... soon after that as I was slowing down to make a turn, the RPM's dropped and the truck almost stalled out. The gauges showed the RPM drop, but again, no dancing needles, but yes, the idiot lights on the dash kept lighting up like a Christmas tree, with bells and dingers going off. It was a light and musical symphony!

Then I had a hairball idea. I immediately drove to AutoZone and had them check the battery.

100% charged, bad battery.

Their stress test machine showed that the battery was charged, but still came up as bad. I replaced the battery and I have not had any issues since. NONE!

Now, I know what you're thinking, I should have had some warning that the battery was taking a dump: dragging starter, volt meter showing low voltage, dim interior lighting, dim headlights...something. Not in this instance. This is the first time in my life I have ever experienced a battery issue and not know it was a battery issue. With the battery being maintenance free there wasn't any way to check the levels either, so no battery symptoms and no clues. And for those who will ask this question, yes, the battery terminals are spotless and corrosion free.

Something else. I'm not unconvinced now that the battery did something and jacked up the first alternator. When the alternator went out, the volts pegged 0 in an instant, and the "check gauges" light popped on. Absolutely no charging what-so-ever, and it happened in a blink of an eye. I can't prove it, but sometimes in hindsight, you just know its true.

LESSON: Always check the battery first! Would have saved me 10 months of misery.

SO...there it is, my story about my problem. I hope this helps someone in the future with their issues.

-HemiBat
You are not the first to be bamboozaled by a bad battery , these trucks cando all kinds of wierd shit when the battery is defective. Thanks for sharing,hopefully others will benefit from it .
Been there done that. Battery going down is no joke!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Yeah, I bought mine used, but it came with a new Interstate battery, so it's been problem-free since I bought it 4 years ago. However, just today I noticed that there is quite a bit of crystallization on the top of the battery - indicative of excessive gassing. Maybe it's the battery that's starting to go, maybe it's the voltage regulator that isn't doing its job, but whatever it is I'm going to have to keep a watchful eye on it...
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
17,847 Posts
A battery can do very weird stuff. I have seen a battery kill and engine at random like the key was turned off. It’s weird how they work there evil magic lol
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top