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Starting & Charging System - Houston's Premier Auto Repair Facility

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Starting and Charging System | Starting and Charging System Components | Video

Starting & Charging System Video

The alternator is connected to the accessory drive belt system. As the belt turns, it spins the alternator. The alternator produces AC voltage that is converted to DC voltage by the bridge rectifier. A normal output voltage of the alternator is 14.4 volts - enough to charge a 12 volt battery.

When a vehicle is started, current flows from the closed ignition switch to the starter solenoid. Sometimes the park/neutral safety switch is placed in this circuit and will only allow current to the starter if the transmission is placed in Park or Neutral.

Once the starter solenoid is activated, it pushes the starter pinion gear outwards so that it engages with the flywheel ring gear. At the same time, it also allows current to the starter motor, causing the pinion gear to spin. The spinning pinion gear rotates the flywheel until the engine can rotate on its own.

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