A lot of people want to know how to fix their Ford charging system “service now” light. While we search for a quick fix, let’s take some time to look out for what is responsible for the issue. I’ve combined the fix and causes in this article for your interest. When you ignite your 2020 F250 engine, the ‘charging system service now’ light comes up. It indicates that the vehicle is running majorly on battery power. But how do you solve this issue? Read along with me to learn more about the check charging system light.
What Does the “Charging System Service Now” message mean?
Whether in Ford or any other vehicle for that matter, the charging system service now is a 12v system fault. Typically, the charging system houses several components of your vehicle, including the ECU and wiring. It also consists of the battery and alternator. The charging system will charge your Ford’s battery and keeps it charged. The energy needed to run the radio, lights, and other electrical components comes from the charging system.
What does the Charging System Warning Light mean?
As you switch on your engine, the battery, alternator, electronic control unit, and other electrical components start running. However, you may observe that the charging system warning light illuminates. When this happens, it indicates that the engine relies solely on the power of the battery to run. If you don’t look into the problem immediately, you may be having a bigger issue on your hand.
The consequence is that the charging system will fail. As a result, your car battery won’t recharge and will eventually run down. Would you be able to stand a dead battery? I’m sure you wouldn’t. Hence, you may want to call on or drive to a mechanic for an instant fix.
What Causes the Charging System Service Now Light message?
Here are some of the possible things causing the charging system Service Now light message:
Alternator Not Charging
The first thing to think about when you receive the ‘charging system service now light’ alert is that the alternator is not charging. The heavy-duty alternator is a very critical part of the battery charging system. It is responsible for mechanical energy conversion to electrical energy. So when it is faulty, it will cause the charging system light to come on due to improper voltage regulation.
Corroded wires and connections will cause the service charging system light to come on. This reminds me of Ohm’s law which states that for a given voltage, the amps will reduce when more holds back. It’s possible there are shorts.
Your battery’s stuff produces different colored stuff and will prevent current flow via the circuits. At times, corrosion may not be visible but the elements will be deep in the battery cables. This is often caused by leaking gases or battery fluids. Also, when your battery is old, corrosion is inevitable preventing the ability to hold enough charge.
Defective Engine Speed Sensor
A faulty Ford engine run sensor will cause the transmission to rev higher before the car shift gears. This transmission overdrive can cause the charging system service now light to come on. This may cause the transmission not to top gear.
Failing Drive Belt
This component helps to turn the pulley of the alternator as well as power it. An alternator will start to malfunction when the drive belt becomes worn out or not functioning as expected anymore. An example of this is that it may spin slowly or slip off from time to time. Whatever the case may be, it reduces the functionality of the alternator and in return, affects the voltage, causing the system light to come on.
Dead or Weak Battery
When your car battery develops issues, your Ford may show a charging system service now light. This is coming up because of the battery’s inability to further store electrical charge, leading to issues with the battery charging system. Failed or corroded battery terminals can also be a cause. To see if the battery is staying charged, connect a good voltmeter to the transit battery. The voltmeter will detect if the battery is fully or partly charging.
Best Ways To Solve Issues With Your Ford Charging System
How to Fix alternator issues
I am sure not many people can solve this issue without seeing their mechanic. Your mechanic will help you test the voltage produced by your alternator. Your mechanic may replace the weak alternator with a new one if the voltage is not high as expected.
How to fix Battery Issues
I don’t assume you may need the services of your mechanic here. You should consider replacing your battery with a needed one. Get a new battery and connect the terminals properly. For a short-term fix, you can try the battery reset sequence.
How to Fix drive belt problems
I recommend you see your mechanic since solving this with a DIY may result in further issues if you are not familiar with it. Your mechanic will help you check the drive belt’s condition, and if faulty, will replace it.
How to Fix connection issues
You can solve this with a DIY by cleaning all connections properly. Ensure your battery clamps are not dirty and screw them tight. You may further see your mechanic to help you inspect the alternator wirings and connections and see if there are any burned links. Repair it if you find any.
Is it safe if I drive my Ford with the charging system light on?
I recommend that you only drive it when you are headed to the mechanic shop to fix this issue. This is because this light comes up when something is wrong, hence, you must find a solution to avoid further issues.
How can I maintain my Ford’s charging system?
Maintaining your Ford’s charging system is very simple. All you have to do is to ensure you reduce corrosion by cleaning your engine properly. You should also learn to reduce too much current draw and regularly check your drive belt.
As an alternative fix, you should disconnect the charging DC-to-DC circuit. You’ll find this ta the CAN calibration protocol, a protocol that acquires and calibrates data from the electronic control unit (ECU).
Servicing your Ford’s charging system is an essential thing to do to enjoy the best operation of your car. As a result, you must understand how it works. With the above simple solutions relating to the charging system service light coming up, you can now solve the issues whenever it comes up.