Originally Posted by tomp
This question will reveal that I am not a gear head at all...
When I have headlights on - heater going -
When I brake, the headlights dim very briefly and engine lugs very briefly...
Bad battery or alternator going?
The volt gauge is above the midway mark but I notice that it dips quickly when I brake...
This has just started happening this last week....
All your drop voltage symptomas you described are exisitng since almost day on on my car.
Well, nothing new under the bonnies sun. I own a 1988 SSE since new, and I have to tell you that condition is a typical GM wrong design issue.
This problem exists since day one and let me tell you that 105 amps alternators will need to be changed religiously every 2 years.
In 2004 I got stucked on the road with a dead AC/DELCO REMAN 105 AMPS on a sunday and the local garage where I was stucked could get any fresh replacement alternator and managed to install a used 140 AMPS alternator from a WRECKED Buick Lesabre donnor (1993 i think) and it fitted to allow me to return home.
I kept the 105 amps dead core and brought it to a local alternator rebuilder and asked them to make sure it delivers 140 amps...like the buick.
The battery gauge indicatorIt still does the flicking when I touch brakes or turn flashers on a traffic light but the charging system is quite more prompt to recharge the draining
Another trick I found is to plug a solar panel 5.5 amps that I plug into the lighter socket
when I do not use the car on a daily basis.
It keeps the battery very strong all the time.
I should had done this long time ago.
On 1988/1989 model...you will have to live with the flicking because it a design problem
from GM. They prpbaly figured out how profitable for them is it to sale Alternator replacement than fixing the problem with a service bulletin since day one.