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Estimates Starting and Charging Alternator Replacement

Saturn SL Alternator Replacement

An alternator generates electric power in a car and is a major component of the car's charging system. Replacement costs depend on the year, make, and model of the car.

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Saturn SL Alternator Replacement

RepairSmith offers upfront and competitive pricing. The average cost for Saturn SL Alternator Replacement is $332. Drop it off at our shop and pick it up a few hours later, or save time and have our Delivery mechanics come to you.

Car
Location
Quoted on
Price
1996 Saturn SL
1.9L L4 Base • 52,000 miles
Northridge CA 91324
Mar 30, 2021
$277 - $339
2001 Saturn SL
1.9L L4 Base • 301,000 miles
Sparks NV 89441
Mar 18, 2021
$266 - $325
2001 Saturn SL
1.9L L4 • 58,000 miles
Las Vegas NV 89129
Feb 17, 2021
$275 - $336
1996 Saturn SL
1.9L L4 Base • 244,000 miles
Rancho Cordova CA 95741
Jan 15, 2021
$293 - $358
2001 Saturn SL
1.9L L4 Base • 127,000 miles
Gardena CA 90247
Dec 19, 2020
$253 - $309
2002 Saturn SL
1.9L L4 • 130,000 miles
Los Angeles CA 90066
Nov 13, 2020
$374 - $458
2002 Saturn SL
1.9L L4 Base • 76,000 miles
Orangevale CA 95662
Oct 17, 2020
$297 - $363
1998 Saturn SL
1.9L L4 Base • 238,000 miles
Los Angeles CA 90038
Oct 5, 2020
$351 - $429
Last Updated:
Sep 7, 2021 3:19 PM
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What is an Alternator?

The alternator is responsible for two things. First, it powers the electrical units when your car is running. The radio, lights, window switches, USB ports, etc., are all powered by the alternator. And second, it recharges the car’s battery, which is the source of electricity when the car is turned off. Your car’s alternator gains power from the engine. It’s connected to the engine via a drive belt, and it converts that energy into usable electricity. It’s a pretty simple system. However, the alternator does need to be regulated, to make sure that nothing is overcharged or undercharged. In older cars, that’s the job of the voltage regulator. In newer cars, the engine control module (ECM) is responsible for those duties.

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Symptoms of a failing Alternator

Car won’t start

When your car is running, the alternator uses energy from the engine to recharge the battery. When the car is off, it needs that electricity from the battery in order to turn back on. If the car won’t turn on, it may be because the alternator isn’t recharging the battery.

Hard starting

Similarly, if the alternator isn’t charging the battery sufficiently, you’ll likely have trouble starting the car, also known as a hard start.

Stalling

You might think that these issues only arise when starting the vehicle, but a malfunctioning alternator can actually result in stalling when your car is turned on.

Lights that are too bright or too dim

If the alternator is sending too much electricity to the electrical units, your car’s lights will likely be brighter than they’re supposed to be. Conversely, if the alternator isn’t sending enough electricity, then the lights will be too dim.

Whining noise

A busted alternator will often make an annoying whining noise when the engine is running.

Warning lights

A malfunctioning alternator will usually result in a warning light or two illuminating on your dashboard. The check engine warning light and a charging system warning light are most common.

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How urgent is an Alternator replacement?

Usually a faulty alternator won’t cause further damage to the vehicle. However, if it is overcharging or undercharging certain electrical units, it is possible for some damage to occur. A malfunctioning alternator does make your car less reliable, however, due to the potential issues with stalling and starting, so it’s best to get it replaced immediately if you’re starting to notice the above symptoms.

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