Battery, Alternator or a Short?
Ok, so this starts I gues a few months ago but it went away and now its back. A few months ago my only problem was the car hesitating to start in the morning, I looked at the battery for a date because I know I haven't' replaced it and dad didn't remember the last time. it doesn't the the months were listed in 2 letter abbreviation and one of them was marked off but i forget the month so anyway the year is marked out by a '5' being removed from the numbers 0-9 which means either 1995 or 2005. I nor my dad remember replacing the battery as recent as '05 and '95 seems unlikely since we it was definitely replaced in '97 when my mom hit a deer with it.
Well now the problem a bit worse. With everything off its fine, if i have my lights on i don't notice a difference except occasionally the lights will dim with the radio, or when i brake (brake lights). With the AC on the temp and oil pressure gauges get jumpy with the radio sometimes. and if its at night with the headlights on and AC anytime I brake the dash and dims to the point I almost cant see it.
The voltmeter is reading 14-15 with nothing on but the radio. with lights its dead on 14 or just under it. AC and it goes to 11-12. I'm not sure where it is normally or if it normally fluctuates with AC or lights being on because i haven't really payed attention to that particular gauge. So is that normal or where should it read?
I feel confident that its the battery, but dad mentioned maybe there is a short somewhere,and i figured the alternator (which has been replaced 3 times by my dad) could be just as relavent to this situation.