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Go Back   TDIClub Forums > TDI Model Specific Discussions Areas > VW MKVI-A6 Golf family including Jetta SportWagen (~ 2010-2014)

VW MKVI-A6 Golf family including Jetta SportWagen (~ 2010-2014) Discussions area for A6/MkVI (2010-2014) Golf and Golf Wagons (Jetta Sportwagon in the USA).

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Old February 20th, 2011, 07:45   #1
hymato
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Default 2010 jetta Battery light on

2600 miles on my jetta and the battery light came on last night while driving home. I went to check the car this am and it fired right up, but the battery light is still on. I've had the battery go dead on me once but I charged it back up and everything has been fine since. Any ideas afraid car might die on me waiting for VW to open to see if I can get loaner car. Thanks Chris
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Old February 20th, 2011, 07:51   #2
NovaMoto
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If the battery light is on I'd check the alternator. I also wouldn't drive it for fear of breaking down!
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Old February 20th, 2011, 07:53   #3
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Well if the alternator dumps while i'm driving how long can I go on just the battery?
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Old February 20th, 2011, 08:04   #4
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That light means there's a charging problem. You need it looked at ASAP before the car shuts down on you - hopefully not in traffic.
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Old February 20th, 2011, 08:05   #5
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hopefully VW just gives me a loaner car today or I'm gonna be pissed
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Old February 20th, 2011, 08:17   #6
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Has anyone had this happen to them before?
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Old February 20th, 2011, 08:52   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hymato View Post
Well if the alternator dumps while i'm driving how long can I go on just the battery?
Chances are, the alternator has already 'dumped' and that is *why* the light is on. SO you are driving on borrowed time now.

Anything that draws electrical power is going to reduce your drive time. Think Apollo 13 - you need to shut down everything that is not absolutely required. Use the turn signal stalk to disable the DRLs, turn off the radio, turn off the nav, do not plug you cell phone charger in, make sure the dome lights are off, do not turn the headlights on (read: don't drive at night).

I would wag that you could go 30 to 60 minutes before a fully charged battery dies.

On older diesels you could drive indefinitely without an alternator or battery. You snipped the fuel shut off plunger off at the injector pump and once you got it started (push starting...) it would run until you stalled it (the key would not shut it off, as it was all mechanical at that point).

The newer diesels use electricity to power up the fuel pumps, ECU, injectors, crank timing sensors, etc. The electrical load is pretty high even with the non-essentials powered down.
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Old February 20th, 2011, 08:57   #8
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Can't say that I have, but I was talking with a fellow tdi owner at the dealership on Friday and his 2004 is having alternator problems and his battery went flat and he had to coast the last two blocks into the dealership since his fuel pump stopped.
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Old February 20th, 2011, 09:43   #9
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I just got off the phone with the dealership and I told them the alternator is done and I need a loaner car. And I got told call back Monday when the service dept opens. What a bunch of #$@%
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Old February 20th, 2011, 10:05   #10
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It's pretty normal to have to wait until the service department is open to get service.

It's also always a bad idea to tell the shop what is broken. Tell them the symptoms/indications. Let them determine the cause.

In a non-warranty situation if you walked into the shop and declared that the alternator was bad and you wanted a new one, the dealer just might put a new alternator on without checking anything else. When you get the car back and the light is still on.. the dealer will say, "You said the alternator was bad and wanted a new one - you never asked us to troubleshoot the light".
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Old February 20th, 2011, 10:50   #11
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Get a digital voltmeter and check battery voltage at the battery terminals with engine running. 13.5 to 14.5 Vdc and alternator is keeping battery up, meaning you can probably drive as far as you wish. 12.0 to 12.6 Vdc, and alternator is doing nothing and battery will eventually go dead. Under 12 and battery is pretty well discharged and it will not drive far before it quits.

Put a battery charger on to top it up before you drive and that will extend your range.

Home Depot, walmart, any hardware store will have a digital voltmeter for 20-50 bucks or so.
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Old February 20th, 2011, 11:10   #12
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^
Agreed to all posts above.

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Old February 20th, 2011, 15:01   #13
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if you don't want to buy the meter, autozone will check the charging system for you. but a meter is real handy for all sorts of troubleshooting around the house and garage, well worth the bucks.
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Old February 22nd, 2011, 08:33   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hymato View Post
I just got off the phone with the dealership and I told them the alternator is done and I need a loaner car. And I got told call back Monday when the service dept opens. What a bunch of #$@%
I wouldn't have expected the dealership to do much on a Sunday...of Presidents' Day weekend, when many dealerships are running big sales.

Instead of screwing around with Autozone, call VW Roadside Assistance and let them tow it to the nearest dealer. Then go rent a car. After your car is repaired under WARRANTY, submit the car rental receipt to VWRA for reimbursement.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 13:11   #15
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Turns out the bolt for the belt tensioner walked out and everything was spinning. I ended up doing what you said just calling VW roadside assistance had the car towed and went a rented a tiguan lol
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