New? Start here. See the forum's active topics. Say hi contact Matthew.
This Amazon link helps MVS!

Bad Alternator Symptoms

Let’s talk Bad Alternator Symptoms


Repeated Dead Battery – The Alternator was Bad

My car wouldn’t turn over at all today. It was dead, interior lights barely on. The battery is 12 months old to the day. I don’t live in a state where there is cold temperature (less than 45F at night during winter as average), nor extreme summer heat or humidity.

I have noticed in the past 3-5 weeks I would come out and start my car for the first time (morning or night didn’t matter when I started) after the previous night, it would turn over just fine. However, after putting into 1st gear and applying some gas, it would seem as if the car was going to stall sort of. I wouldn’t do anything different, I’d push down on accelerator pedal and I was off, no problem. This would not repeat itself until the next day, or some days later perhaps. The interval of this repeating itself seemed random.

Tonight, I got a jump from AAA. The guy tested the battery, no dead cells, he tested alternator, appears fine. He put some jumper device on the terminals, car turned over/started on the first go. I’m not saying the alternator isn’t bad, just reporting what I was told.

’95 850GLT Bad Alternator Symptoms

Subscribe to the MVS Newsletter

The MVS Volvo Newsletter is a once-a-month email delivered to your email. It’s simple to unsubscribe at any time if you change your mind.

Visit The Official Volvo Cars Website


I had a lucky troubleshoot today on my 1996 850GLT wagon with 138,000 miles. After a long trip with the AC running, my battery went dead. I was ready to buy a new alternator for ~$250 but that wouldn’t have fixed the problem. After a jump, with the car running, the battery terminals read 12V and yet the alternator terminals read 14V. I cleaned the battery terminals but that didn’t change anything. I then noticed the battery terminal clamps were getting very hot (>220F) where the cable meets the terminal clamp (the OEM charging and starter cables are crimped to a brass terminal clamp which attaches to the battery post). It turned out there was about a 1V drop between the copper cable and the terminal clamp on both the Positive and the Ground sides of the battery. The fix was $10 worth of terminal clamps I spliced onto the cables. The original terminal clamps looked fine and were without obvious corrosion but they were far from OK. A 1V drop with an alternator generating (say) 50Amps is 50 Watts. It made enough heat so it was too hot to touch. That was a clue that saved me $240 or more. Thanks to all on this site.


well a couple days ago on my 95 850 turbo wagon i hadnt had any problems with my car but i stop in front of the parts store and the radio kept cutting on and off and the tcs and abs light flashed on and on and when i truned it off and went to turn it back on the car was dead i mean dead didnt even click when i turned the ign. so i got a jump thought it was fine when i got home did the same thing charged the battery on a tricle charger for 24 hours on 2amps and put it in the car took it and got the car tested batterey good and alt. bad

Leave a Reply