Can a Bad Alternator Cause Transmission Problems?

Can a Bad Alternator Cause Transmission Problems

“Why do I have a transmission problem?” can a bad alternator cause transmission problems? This is common question car owners and newbies who just got behind the wheels ask a lot of times.

There are a few reasons why you can have a transmission problem, symptomatic noises, overheating, clogged filters, low transmission fluids, and a lot more are major reasons you can have a transmission problem.

A bad alternator can cause transmission problems if it fails to recharge the battery and the battery becomes low, the car’s computer may not shift the transmission gears correctly resulting in rough shift, stalling or surges, etc.

A bad alternator is nothing good to the car or its owner because it will cause more problems than the solutions it produces.

The alternator holds the electrical aspect of your car and when it goes wrong, it should send you a danger alert because it has the tendency to affect the entire car system.

What Are The Signs Of A Bad Alternator?

A bad alternator doesn’t become bad all at once; it is more like a villain in a movie who is first the good shepherd but changes with time.

There are signs that are observable that you can check to know when things are about to go wrong or not. In case you are not knowledgeable about these things, here is a hint;

1. A Dim Or Overlay Bright Lights

Since the alternator regulates the electrical aspect of your car, quick observable traits you can easily pull out are when electronic accessories provide inconsistent voltage. Inconsistent voltage is a voltage lower than expected or a voltage higher than expected.

You can relate it to a headlight producing too much brightness or giving out too little light or it could be a combo of both high and low display of brightness.

Whichever one your car displays first should ring a bell in your conscious self that the alternator is in trouble.

2. A Dead Or Dying Battery

You probably killed the battery by leaving the headlights on overnight so it died itself or the alternator sent it to its early grave.

If the lifespan of a battery is enough to get damaged, we won’t relate this to an alternator problem but the only way to know is to jumpstart the car.

If after jumpstarting the car, it continues working then the battery may need replacement, or it needs a lot more charge because you forgot to take off the headlight but if after working for a short while it goes off again, you should know the alternator is damaged and will need to be replaced.

A dead battery cannot be managed to avoid getting stranded in the middle of nowhere.

3. Little Efficiency Or Malfunctioning Of Accessories

When an alternator doesn’t supply enough power as it is supposed to, it will affect the effectiveness of other parts of the car accessories, like the window might be difficult to roll up or down, or possibly you have an ignition problem.

If you notice any electrically charged accessory in your car is causing you a bad day, it is probably because the alternator isn’t dispensing enough power.

4. Unpleasant Smells Or Burning Wires Or Rubber

The alternator belt has its position close to a hot engine and because of the constant friction with the alternator’s drive belt; it might wear out with time and burn, so releasing some smells that are likely to choke you up.

You should not overwork your alternator. An overworked alternator is one that is hitting up inappropriately because it pushes out too much power to the required parts of the car.

Can a Bad Alternator Cause Transmission Problems?

Yes, a bad alternator can cause a transmission problem and you possible may wonder how and why this can happen.

Well, the alternator takes the sole responsibility to pass enough current to your battery and likewise to your car computer.

Apparently, since your car computer has one or two things to do with a shift between gears, there would be a problem.

This may sound unusual but an alternator most times has a hand in the troubles your transmission is facing. You should take more chances to verify with your mechanic in case you have your doubts.

What Other Problems Can a Bad Alternator Cause?

An alternator problem is a lot to deal with as it doesn’t affect the car’s battery alone, it affects other parts which makes it one of the most important parts of a car because of its ability to cause more damage.

The following are a few problems a bad alternator can cause;

It Affects Every Electrical Power Accessories In Your Car

The car can’t run unless it is being powered electrically. The battery which is the first hand to be powered, if there is an alternator that is damaged and unable to give enough power to the battery, every other part of the car like the radio, window, speedometer, headlights, and others will function less which sure isn’t a good user experience.

Your Car Will Experience Ignition Problem

The ignition problem is a quick trace to a bad alternator since everything revolves around a charged battery. For a better experience, you should be on alert when you notice a slow ignition before it becomes so bad that your car doesn’t turn on at all.

You Probably Will Experience A Rough Running

For every modern vehicle, there is a need for a steady supply of voltage for the car to run adequately. A break in the expected voltage supply as a result of a bad alternator will cause a system malfunction which will cause the car’s engine to run inadequately.

You know your car isn’t running well when there are rough idles, poor accelerations, stalling, and possibly some hesitations.

How To Prevent Your Alternator From Going Bad

Now that you know how a bad alternator can steal your peace, it is important to learn a few preventative measures to preserve your car’s alternator from going bad. A few of them are.

Ensure Your Car Computer Isn’t Having Problems

It is important to keep an eye on your car computer so it doesn’t send out information wrongly.

Alternators supply voltages to the needed parts of the car but a car computer supervises the entire process so if it goes bad, the alternator supplies a wrong voltage which in the end affects everything electrically powered in the car.

If you notice any issue arising with your car computer, a quick fix wouldn’t cost you much, get it done to avoid further uprising problems.

Don’t Keep A Bad Battery

An alternator supplies the battery with the required voltage for it to cause your car to turn on. If the car’s battery is initially in a critical condition, it will cause the alternator to develop a fault.

A bad battery is likely to require more power than usual and by so doing; it affects the car computer and causes it to break from its normal functioning ability.

Have A Close Watch On Your Alternator

Your alternator also needs to be watched closely and one of the ways to do that is to prevent it from being overworked so it doesn’t wear out.

Aside from these reasons why your alternator can go wrong, another point you should consider is to change your alternator once it is too old to take up many tasks.

It is that simple. Since you can’t live for eternity, your alternator also has a lifespan, if it is time to stop working, it stops but before that, signs are always indicated so you can change it as soon as possible.

A Faulty Wiring

When you open up your alternator, you can easily see they chucked different wires up towards the alternator. There could be one of these wires not in its active state and so possibly affects the entire system.

If the problem is merely a wire, you could replace it or have it fixed. A MECHANIC WOULDN’T TAKE MUCH TO GET IT DONE FOR YOU.


Your alternator is a vital part of your car and it is paramount you treat it as such because it has the tendency of causing more harm to anything electrically powered in your vehicle and likewise has its effects on your transmission but either way, you should have a chat with a mechanic if you have your doubts about an alternator problem.