Need a little advice for headlighs/dash lights flickering

Discussion in 'Audio, Video & Gadget Tech' started by Lsardoin, Sep 19, 2010.

  1. Lsardoin

    Lsardoin New Member

    :grrrrrr:I know its a common issue with GM vehicles. I just installed 2 10" subs and a 400W amp in my 07 silverado, and im seeing the lights on my dash and my headlights flicker more than ever!.. its always done it, even with the factory setup, or even when i roll my window down etc... i was just wandering if theres any actualy remedies for this? some kind of in-line regulators or somthing to make it stop?.. its driving me crazy, i feel like im in a club going down the street! they flicker to the point of almost strobing. what all can be done to lessen or stop this completely?!.. i had this same setup in my nissan altima, and then my 350Z and none of the lights ever flickered. I didnt think a small 400w amp would make it so bad.

    TELORVEHC Rockstar 4 Years 1000 Posts

    I would go and upgrade the "Big 3" wires under the hood. I've never done it myself but from what I've read its not too difficult. Just google "Big 3 wire upgrade" or check out this page ----> If that doesn't solve the issue, try upgrading to a higher mAh battery like an XS Power, Stinger or Deka. An Optima Yellowtop would work as well but they're overpriced IMO.
  3. Lsardoin

    Lsardoin New Member

    Thanks, I'll definately give that a try... Have you heard of any voltage regulators, or compacitors or anything? I'm reaching here

    TELORVEHC Rockstar 4 Years 1000 Posts

    Voltage regulators may help but I really don't have much knowledge about them. Capacitors on the other hand, don't even bother with them, they're extremely overpriced for what they do and just take up space in your truck.
  5. ZSI52

    ZSI52 Epic Member 5+ Years 500 Posts

    For sure do the Big 3, but use good quality 0awg wiring. has good wiring for cheap.
  6. OptimaJim

    OptimaJim New Member

    Hi Lsardoin, when your lights flicker, that generally indicates that at that moment the electrical demands of your vehicle are outpacing your alternator's ability to supply it. Doing "The Big 3" is a good idea, but you should also consider upgrading your alternator. The key to long battery life, regardless of brand, is to make sure your battery voltage is always maintained at 12.4 volts or higher. When batteries are discharged below that level and allowed to sit, sulfation begins to diminish both performance and lifespan.

    If you are placing heavy demands on your stock alternator (and it sounds like you are), a quality battery tender or maintainer would be a wise investment. Most factory alternators are designed to maintain batteries, not recharge deeply-discharged batteries. Asking an alternator to repeatedly recharge deeply-discharged batteries can lead to a cycle of dead batteries and jump-starts, until either your battery or alternator fails. If you have any questions about our batteries, I'll do my best to answer them.

    Jim McIlvaine
    eCare Manager, OPTIMA Batteries, Inc.
  7. Lsardoin

    Lsardoin New Member

    Thanks for all of the good info. What is a battery tender / maintainer? Is anyone else having this problem? I've heard GM vehicles are infamous for light flicker. Like I said they even flickered before I installed my amp and subs. Like when I would put my brake, or when I would use my power windows. I find it hard to believe that the stock alternator is that ****ty that it can't handle the stock load. I think I read somewhere that the vehicles computer actually tells the alternator when to build voltage, and when to stop... Like it runs intermittently to help conserve mpg. Does anyone know if there is any truth to this? Or ever heard of this?.. If so, seems like you could get a tune to control the alternator... Kinda like how I can control my electric fans... Any one heard of somthing like this?

    ***edit*** this is what I read about the computer controlling the alternator

    Last edited: Sep 21, 2010
  8. ejohnson03

    ejohnson03 Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    Had a similair issue in my Impala. 3600 watts and four 12" Subs.

    Optima Yellowtop battery, two separate 2 Farad caps, 0 ga. wiring, and a Power Master 140amp Alternator made all the difference.
    "Never too old, never too LOUD..."
  9. OptimaJim

    OptimaJim New Member

    A battery tender or maintainer is a charging device that will monitor your batttery and keep it at its full potential while being stored. Fully-automatic, “multi-stage” or “multi-step” chargers monitor the battery and charge it as necessary. Multi-stage maintainers will charge at varying voltages and varying amperage (rarely exceeding 2 amps). Some of these multi-step chargers are also capable of being regular battery chargers (7 amps or more).

    For example, if you took your truck to a park and ran the stereo all day long, but only drove 10 minutes to get home, your alternator probably did not replace the energy you used during the course of the day. By plugging your vehicle into a tender or maintainer, you can replace that energy over time, while also putting less stress on your alternator. These are also excellent devices for vehicles that only see occasional or season use.

    The GM charging systems are getting more sophisticated, which is a good thing, because the introduction of OnStar, GPS systems and other electrical devices has dramatically increased the demand placed on them. BMW's new charging systems are so sophisticated, new batteries must be “registered” with the vehicle's ECU when replaced.

    Jim McIlvaine
    eCare Manager, OPTIMA Batteries, Inc.
  10. Lsardoin

    Lsardoin New Member

    Update****. I installed a capacitor and it helped out alot. ( i had my alternater and battery checkd at oreilys) I still get the dimming every now and then. It appears to only dim when the bass hits really hard. It sounds like the cheap legacy speakers that I have can't handle my little 400 watt amp. Sometimes it sounds like the subs are like "bottoming out". And this appears to be when the lights dim. Next project is a big 3 upgrade. Then I have to get my partner's car painted this week (stupid Mitsubishi black paint). So maybe when my wallet recovers from that, some better 10" subs. Maybe alpine's new type s sub. Anyway, I'll keep y'all posted.

Share This Page

Newest Gallery Photos