Need a little advice for headlighs/dash lights flickering

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

  1. ZSI52

    ZSI52 Epic Member 5+ Years 500 Posts

    The capacitor is just a temporary fix. It's just more work that the alternator has to do. Your electrical system shouldn't be flickering with 400watts. I had 600 watts on my stock system and the only time it flickered was if I hadnt started the vehicle in awhile or if I used the windows. Once I got a optima yellow top I went to about 1,000 watts and I still didn't have flickering. Every GM truck I've been in has flickered when the windows are being rolled down or up. I would sell the capacitor and get a better battery from like optima or something similar. I would also do the BIG 3. That will probably help the most.
  2. senorbob999

    senorbob999 New Member

    consider buying a deep cell battery or upgrading your alternator. a deep cell battery from optima runs about 200 bucks. a oem high output alternator for your truck is about $140 or more depending on how many amps you want. i upgraded my alternator to the drg44 alternator from a silverado ss and got a 2 farad capacitor and upgraded the wire from my alternator to my battery to a 4 gauge wire. my lights never flickered again. im running 2 power hx2's and a 1500w jbl amp.
  3. Quietflight72

    Quietflight72 New Member

    I fixed my flickering by making sure that everything was grounded ( cab, engine). To the frame.
  4. The Heater

    The Heater Rockstar 100 Posts

    Wow. If I understand correctly, this person has a 400 watt amplifier. No information given about any additional amplifiers.

    A stock alternator on that year truck can drive up to 1500 watts no problem, and you absolutely do NOT need to change the "big three" wires to 0awg. That type of overkill should be left to those with OCD. If you have four gauge battery wire at positive and negative, that is plenty large. 2 gauge if you want.

    A capacitor does not over tax the alternator or the battery. It stores energy and discharges only when the load requires it by taking more voltage than the battery can deliver to the load. If your lights are dimming, it is illogical to conclude the diameter of your power source wire is too small. I am running three 500 watt Soundstream Reference AB amplifiers in my Infiniti with no extra stuff and no upgraded wiring and everything works to full volume to the point that it will destroy all my components and the sub woofer if the volume is turned up too loud. No dimming lights, ever.

    The one place I agree you should upgrade wire diameter is between the alternator and the positive battery post. Four gauge should work.

    In my truck I run two four channel amplifiers totaling around 1000 watts, and I have 2 gauge power wire and a 175 amp alternator with the OEM wire running to the battery from it. I am going to replace one amplifier with two two channel amps, one will be 500 watts, the other will be 940 watts, and I might put a capacitor between the large amp and the power block, but that is it. I use an Optima yellow top deep cycle battery. My lights in my truck have never dimmed even when all the original power wire and the OEM alternator (100 amps) were in the truck with one 600 watt 5 channel amp.

    I suggest you start simple and test the battery. It could be you just have a bad battery or a bad ground. Grounds are probably the most overlooked source of electrical issues in cars by do-it-yourselfers. I installed, at the recommendation of my technician at the shop that does my engine work, a 4 gauge ground wire from the battery negative to the rear frame parallel to where I have my ground posts (in the floor) for the amplifiers. I run another 4 gauge wire from that point to one of the ground posts on the floor. I use copper terminals and copper washers and clean the areas with sandpaper followed by DeOxIt electrical contact cleaner, then put the posts in place with the ring terminals.

    As one person posted above, the alternator is not keeping up with electrical demands, and it is possible the alternator has a problem, but start with the battery. Often that is the only problem. If you want the alternator tested, I recommend taking the truck to an auto electric repair shop and have them test it, and tell them what you have for aftermarket electrical loads.
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2012
  5. PantheraUncia

    PantheraUncia Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    When my alternator went out I replaced it with a new one (still the stock 105amp) like the factory one. I had headlight flicker when I ran my window up and down buttons on the doors. I also put a new battery in it and then a month later went to dual yellow tops and that made a difference.

    Then [MENTION=50075]SurrealOne[/MENTION] helped me with a 1/0 big three upgrade and there is no flickering at all. I still am looking at potentially moving to a 250-350amp alternator at some point. I plan on adding allot of after market electronic stuff in the future.

    When I am at the point that a new or a new to me used truck presents itself, the first 3 upgrades will be the big three, alternator and dual batteries before anything else is done.
  6. Enkeiavalanche

    Enkeiavalanche Loving the Outdoors Staff Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 5000 Posts

    If your lights are Dimming add the Cap to them.. Do a Good Alt like a Ohio Gen and good Battery and the big 3 But as said above 4Ga will be fine...Old Avalanche 950 Watts RMS Never a Light dimming issue in 6 Years....

Share This Page

Newest Gallery Photos