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I got my 2001 Kia Sportage new, in 2001 and never had any major issues other than reg maintance stuff. I can drive the car locally around town durning the day with no issues. However long distances say over 30 miles in a straight shot my car starts to lose power til it dies, like it was running on just battery power. At times I also noticed that if I go over 50 mph, it dies faster. Now, at night, with lights, I can barely drive 5-10 miles before it dies. It's even done it when I charged the battery to full. Yet, When Autozone hooked it up to there thng they use, they say the battery is fine, starter and alternator is fine. I am at a loss. I know when its about to start dying cuz the internal clock starts to dim then goes out and bomb, car dies. But durning the day then the clock starts to din a bit, it then get bright again and I have no issues. Anyone have any ideas, suggestions??? Has anyone had this happen???
 

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Caribou, Otter, Buffalo
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The regulator is internal in the alternator....

Check the belt tension..
Remove and clean the main battery terminals and main ground.. Philip
 

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Cerato S Hatch Auto
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The regulator is internal in the alternator...
Something is preventing correct charging; there must be a regulator function, wherever the actual electronic bits reside. I presume that so far, the cure to the problem has been charging the battery from an external charger.

Loose terminals would prevent starting more likely than gradual fading.
 

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Greetings,

Welcome to the forum.

If you can only drive 5-10 miles under load (headlights on at night), then your alternator is not working - * the alternator is what supplies power to the vehicle when running: the role of the battery is to provide starting power and a power source to maintain running of the engine only.

The battery has a (reserve) to provide starting power, the alternator maintains the battery during normal vehicle use,

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It sounds like you have a combination of issues: both alternator, and battery.. And +1 on cleaning up all major ground points in the engine compartment as a primary diagnostic step.

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The folks @ Autozone are helpful, this is true, but if you did not physically remove the starter, alternator, and battery, and bring them in to have each load tested / diagnosed, then I would be wary of any definitive opinion offered & seeking a second opinion, by an experienced auto technician, to perform a voltage / amp test on the alternator & battery, while the vehicle is running -> under load.

*One item you can check is verifying / making sure a ground strap (wire) is attached between the battery ground tray <-> and motor @ the Intake Manifold: this ground strap -is needed- for proper engine sensor and charging operation.

*If you have aftermarket stereo equipment, lighting (driving/fog lamps), interior lighting, trailer wiring, etc. - I would be disconnecting each and resetting the vehicle back to -stock wiring only- ... If the charging issue improves/abates, time to find out (which) circuit is at issue and correct.

HTH & Regards,
GottaCruise
 

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99 Kia Elan 1.8L, 17 Ford Edge Sport 2.7L V6, 15 Mustang 3.7L V6, 2013 BMW K1600 GTL
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One of the more common reasons why alternators stop generating is worn slip-ring brushes, which are cheap and easy to replace, but these days most people go for a re-manufactured units which have new bearings brushes etc.

I got my 2001 Kia Sportage new, in 2001 and never had any major issues other than reg maintance stuff. I can drive the car locally around town durning the day with no issues. However long distances say over 30 miles in a straight shot my car starts to lose power til it dies, like it was running on just battery power. At times I also noticed that if I go over 50 mph, it dies faster. Now, at night, with lights, I can barely drive 5-10 miles before it dies. It's even done it when I charged the battery to full. Yet, When Autozone hooked it up to there thng they use, they say the battery is fine, starter and alternator is fine. I am at a loss. I know when its about to start dying cuz the internal clock starts to dim then goes out and bomb, car dies. But durning the day then the clock starts to din a bit, it then get bright again and I have no issues. Anyone have any ideas, suggestions??? Has anyone had this happen???
With the check done by Autozone confirming that the alternator and battery are fine, would suggest a bad connection somewhere.
 

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2000 Sportage 4x4 , 1998 Saturn SC2
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The First thing to do is to Remove the battery cables and Clean them, even if you think they look ok , Clean them to good lead and remove the dark grey corrosion. This is what kills both the battery and Alternator, Bad Connections.

Do you have a Voltage Meter ? Go buy one for 25 at Walmart or Autozone. Set it to check voltage and check the volts on the battery with engine off, if it reads 12.5 or less , the battery is getting weak and probably needs replacing. Now crank the engine and check the voltage again on the battery while its running, a new alternator will put out 14.6 volts and one that needs replacing will be less than 12.8 . Also, you may have a bad Hot " Red " battery cable, on rare occasion , the connection at the Starter gets corroded and fries the hot cable and it looses its conductivity.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I presume that so far, the cure to the problem has been charging the battery from an external charger
Actually, Once the car is jumped, and say sitting idle for a while the alternator will charge it and if in day and local driving (no highway driving), will start fine, and run and stuff with limited electrical use like radio and stuff... The car can sit for days at a time and start fine, and I can go to store or mall and such.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The First thing to do is to Remove the battery cables and Clean them, even if you think they look ok , Clean them to good lead and remove the dark grey corrosion. This is what kills both the battery and Alternator, Bad Connections.

Do you have a Voltage Meter ? Go buy one for 25 at Walmart or Autozone. Set it to check voltage and check the volts on the battery with engine off, if it reads 12.5 or less , the battery is getting weak and probably needs replacing. Now crank the engine and check the voltage again on the battery while its running, a new alternator will put out 14.6 volts and one that needs replacing will be less than 12.8 . Also, you may have a bad Hot " Red " battery cable, on rare occasion , the connection at the Starter gets corroded and fries the hot cable and it looses its conductivity.
Doing what suggested it does seem to stay between 12.5 and 13 both ways
 

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2000 Sportage 4x4 , 1998 Saturn SC2
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The battery and the Alternator are most likely bad. This has happened to me already, when the connections are not good and the Alternator cannot charge the battery and run the vehicle, the continuous heavy load wears it out faster, at the same time the battery never gets a good charge and stays weak. I would change the battery first and see if you can get a little more life from the alternator, but its time is near at only 13 volts. This has been my experience, maybe someone else has some suggestions like above by checking ground connections or corroded fuses. Also checking voltage cannot verify load quality.

Autozone is not always reliable, I have been down that road with the battery and alternator test and they were incorrect, I never buy alternators from Autozone for this very reason, because they will tell you your bad alternator ( that still works at the low limit ) is still good so they dont have to replace it until its gone completely ( by this time your battery is dammaged ). Now I'm not knocking Autozone about everything, they do have some good parts, you have to shop carefully.
 
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