Flickering/dimming lights when car is on - Honda-Tech

Flickering/dimming lights when car is on

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Old 03-08-2009, 11:42 PM   #1
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Default Flickering/dimming lights when car is on

So I have this problem with my dash lights and exterior lights flickering when the car is on. They stop doing this whenever I turn the fan to full speed or hold the power window switches when the windows are all the way up/down. I've used a multimeter to test the alternator and battery and they are both putting out the correct voltage. I don't get a charging light either. What could be the problem?
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Old 03-09-2009, 05:43 AM   #2
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Default Re: Flickering/dimming lights when car is on

are you missing the ground wire from the top of the rad support to the valve cover? lacking this wire will cause this problem
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Old 03-09-2009, 06:15 AM   #3
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Default Re: Flickering/dimming lights when car is on

Yes, check your grounds. Your ELD is NOT HAPPY. The ELD is what is causing the fluctuation. Make sure you have your front engine ground, trans ground, and check your ground on the water neck. I'd remove each one and clean the terminal and the grounding surface. Put them back on and see if that takes care of it.
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Old 03-15-2009, 04:53 PM   #4
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Default Re: Flickering/dimming lights when car is on

Hi, I have a '96 Accord EX that has been acting strange. It has 110K miles. While driving, a relay or relays in the glove compartment would click. The speedometer would drop to zero momentarily, the radio would pop and ABS light would come on. Most times, the ABS light would go away and return when the relay clicks (suspect it is the ABS false safe relays). Sometimes, the relay would chatter, ABS light would flicker in rhythm with the relay clicks. When this happens, the clock would flicker and radio pops in sync with the relay clicks. If I kill the engine and restart, the ABS light would go away after a few seconds like normal. At times, the clock would reset to 1:00.

Whenever this happens, the engine and/or drive operates normal. No reving up or rough and operation of vehicle isn't impeded in any way.

I have power window and I have noticed recently that with the engine running, if I wind up the window till the window hits the door frame, I hear a soft whine; as it is lacking juice to complete the operation (clock LED/some console lighting would flicker). But if I kill the engine and leaving the key at acc. position, the window winds till a dead stop without whine being powered by battery.

Can anybody confirm that all my electrical needs are powered by alternator when engine is running? Reason for this line of question is I suspect all these electrical problems stem from a bad alternator or a bad alternator ground. I live outside of Chicago and humid summers and 'salty' winters can do a number on the grounds. I suspect the alternator is either not able to source the current or the ground contacts are so badly oxidized that the ground returns has too high a resistance.

Does anybody know where all the main ground points in this vehicle so that I can clean them? I have tried removing and cleaning the skinny wire contact between the rocker cover and chassis but to no avail. I haven't done anything between the battery -ve terminal to ground point just above the radiator since current from battery seems adequate (power window experiment).

I have tried wiggling the ignition key when this problem manifest itself but doesn't seem to get rid of problem. Ignition key isn't warm or hot, so don't think it is the ignition key. Don't think it is due to fuses either since problem goes away when I shut engine and restart engine.

I have had the Honda dealer service department checked out this problem and they haven't been able to determine root cause.

Any help or pointers from anybody would be appreciated. Thx.

Last edited by Hond1996; 03-15-2009 at 06:33 PM.
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96, accord, acura, car, clock, dimming, driving, flicker, flickering, integra, led, lights, motor, radio, whine, windows

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