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check charging system


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My "check charging system" light came on one day after the car was started, i decided to drive home just make sure i wouldn't get stranded. ON the way home, the light went out, only a few minutes into the drive.

From there on, almost everytime i would start the car, the light would come on and shut off just a few minutes later (if that) . This went on for about a week. The light would stay on longer sometimes but only a few seconds others. Last Friday i left home to get some fuel and light came on but went off after a few seconds. Once i fueled up and left the gas station, it came on and didn't shut off. I barely made it back home running on the battery only.

I figured the alternator just died. 

Bought a new one and fought with the SOB to replace it, low and behold it does the same thing. 

I checked the wiring from the fuse box through the harness, back to the plug for the alternator, the plug had a little crud or corrosion in it, so i replaced it. Still didn't solve the issue.

When the car running with no warinig light, it has 14.5 volts at the batter, when the light is on, it has only 11.5 or so. 

Last night i drove it around for 15-20 mins and the light never came on. This morning we took it to get groceries, it came on and went off for a short periond. 

We got closer to the store and it came back on and never shut off, even on the whole ride home, about 15 minutes or so. 

I left the car running and checked the battery, it was around 12.4, unpluged the alternator and the pin #3 (yellow orange strip wire) was the same.


Anyone have any advice, i am not good with electrical and damn this is frusterating.


This is the same car that was so slugged up in the engine that i had to change the 4 VVT solenoids and valve covers, along with changing the oil about 8 times in only 2 monthes of owning it.

I am positive all of the wiring was hooked back up correctly. It was finally runnign how it should until this started approx. two weeks ago.


Thoughts or ideas? I have not had the battery tested.


It is a 2013 Ford Edge 3.5 non ecoboost.



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  • 10 months later...
On 8/28/2023 at 7:08 PM, Ollie45 said:

Once again, after about 30-60 seconds, the light came back on.

Dammit! lol



Hey I'm having the same problem with my Ford edge. Did you figure out what was going on?

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31 minutes ago, Allen44 said:

I've tried everything I could think of except replacing the alternator. So that's my next step. The car runs for a few minutes and then acts like it wants to cut off. 

No idea what "everything" means.


The battery tester, like the ones that Autozone will use on your vehicle at no charge, will test more than just the health of the battery - I suggest that be the first step in the diagnostics.

Edited by 1004ron
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10 hours ago, EddieHudson said:

Charge your battery. If your car wants to shut off after a few minutes, it usually means the alternator is not working and the battery is almost dead.

A failing battery will most often indicate fully charged which doesn't mean it's healthy - the only reliable way to address the reported issue is testing.

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