If you have gone through the manual of your ford explorer, you will realize that it has a light to check the charging system. Very rarely does this light come on. However, what does it indicate if it does?
What does it mean when it says check charging system on Ford Explorer?
If the check charging system light comes on, it indicates that the vehicle is running on battery power.
If the charging system does not come online in the future, the battery will drain out. With a dead battery, you will have to face many other problems.
What would cause the check charging system on A Ford?
1. Alternator problems:
The charging system can fail if the voltage coming from the alternator is not appropriate. In most cases, this is the problem, especially if you have been driving the same vehicle for 4 to 5 years. When it cannot supply proper voltage to the battery, the light will indeed turn on.
2. Battery issues:
Over time, the Ford Explorer battery can also suffer from wear and tear. In that case, the battery will not charge appropriately. When that happens, the check charging system light will come on. You do this wear; some cells might stop functioning.
3. Drive belt issues:
The job of an alternator is closely associated with that of a drive belt. If the check charging system light comes on, it is also an indicator that the drive belt might not be functioning properly. It won’t allow the alternator to supply proper voltage to the battery, thereby triggering this light.
4. Wire wear and tear:
There are numerous wires, connectors, and terminals in the car. Most of them are susceptible to corrosion. Whether you look at the wires and battery clamps, they can suffer from wear and tear over time. When that happens, the circuit might not be complete, or the drain current might be excessive. In both these cases, the battery won’t get proper voltage resulting in the check charging system light turning on.
5. Problem with onboard computer:
Ultimately, the onboard computer detects the problem and turns on this light. In very rare cases, it might so happen that the onboard computer might be faulty, leading to erroneous turning on of the light.
Now that you are aware of the causes of this light turning on, it is time to look at other associated information.
Is it safe to drive with a check charging system?
It isn’t safe to drive with the check charging system light on. Sooner than later, your battery will be dead because it isn’t getting charged. When that happens, you will be stranded. Instead of taking that risk, it is a better idea to contact a mechanic and get the problem diagnosed and fixed.
How do you fix a Ford check charging system?
Replace The Alternator
When the problem is with the alternator, a mechanic can detect it easily. It requires the replacement of the alternator with a new one. It is an excellent idea to let the mechanic do that instead of attempting it yourself.
Opt for a new battery
Once again, if the problem is with the battery, only a mechanic will be able to fix it. Firstly, the mechanic will check the strength of the battery. After that, the mechanic will let you know whether you should continue using the same battery or opt for a new battery for your car.
Repair Drive belt issues:
If the drive belt suffers from minor problems, it can be repaired in most cases. However, if there is an excessive fault in the drive belt, it might need replacing. In both cases, only a mechanic can help you out.
Replace the alligator clips
This is a cheaper problem to solve. In most cases, replacing the alligator clips or wires isn’t that expensive. Of course, the mechanic will charge you for the labor, but that is minuscule compared to replacing the entire parts that I have highlighted above.
Reset the onboard computer:
Resetting the onboard computer is easy. You will be able to read the manual and do that yourself. Once you identify that the onboard computer is the problem, you will probably have to spend no or very little money to reset it.
These are the likely solutions to the problem of the charging system light coming on.
How much does it cost to fix check charging system?
- Replacing a Ford alternator will cost you around $600-$800, including labor charges.
- Cost of a Ford Explorer battery is usually around $200, including the parts, and an additional $ 150 for the labor charge.
- Replacing the drive belt will cost you around $200-$ 300, including the labor.
- The cost of replacing the wires and connectors depends on the number of wires which need replacement. Generally speaking, you’re looking at the expense of $200-$500.
- In case you reset the onboard computer yourself, you will not have to pay anything. If that doesn’t work out and you have to take your car to the mechanic, you can spend between $100 and $200 in labor charge.
Check charging system Ford Explorer won’t start – why?
If you ignore the problem of the battery not being charged, sooner than later, the drain current will lead to a dead battery. When the battery is entirely dead, your Ford Explorer will not start.
In that case, you might have to jumpstart your car. Before that, it is essential to give your car to the mechanic so that the problem can be solved, and after that, you jumpstart the car. Solely jumpstarting the car without solving the problem won’t help you since the car battery will go dead again.