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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, y'all!

I'm new here and my dude's 2005 3.4L Impala is having what seems to be electrical problems. He took it to Autozone last week and they put in on their "machine." They said the alternator is about to go. But his friends are telling him that maybe the battery needs to be changed. The car starts up okay but he doesn't use the radio or A/C while driving it for fear it will shut off.

I drive a Dodge and it has a basic OBD. To use it, I do something that's called a "key dance." I put the tranny in reverse, turn the key off and on really fast 3 times and then the code shows up in my mileage display.

Can you do this with the Impala? Or is there another way the car can tell him what the problem is?

And if you have any suggestions what the problem might be, I'd really appreciate your help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Take the car to an Auto Zone, Advanced Auto Parts, Checker's, O'Riley's, etc. near you. They can check the battery, alternator, charging system, voltage regulator, etc. FOR FREE. And they can "pull the code" from the car, they can tell you what the code is about - for more info on it, stick the code in Yahoo under '05 Impala Code XXXX" (whatever the code is) and see what added info you get. No sense swapping the battery if the problem in in the alternator (which can be rebuilt for a lot less than a new one) or some other problem.

HTH.
^^^ What does this mean?

Thanks, Fooser. So I take it the Impala doesn't have an OBD in it?

I mentioned in my post he took it to AutoZone. I'll see if he can take it to another one of those places you mentioned.

Thanks!
 

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All domestic vehicles have OBD (On-Board Diagnostics), since 1996.
Your car will use OBDII, since it is newer.

You'll need to take it to an auto store to have them use their OBDII Scanner to pull the codes out of your car's computer. This is usally free in the states.

You could also go to the dealer, and have them scan it, but that'll probably run you 45 bucks or more.

Lastly, you can buy your own handheld scanner for anywhere from 40 bucks to 400 bucks... depends on how much information you want to get. I paid 250for a 400 dollar model on sale, and it has paid for itself already.

There is no "Key-Dance" for the Impala.

It is possible that the battery is toast, as they seem to die over quite a range of ages. The owner should check the battery to make sure it is holding a charge, but it does sound like the alternator is on it's way out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
All domestic vehicles have OBD (On-Board Diagnostics), since 1996.
Your car will use OBDII, since it is newer.

You'll need to take it to an auto store to have them use their OBDII Scanner to pull the codes out of your car's computer. This is usally free in the states.

You could also go to the dealer, and have them scan it, but that'll probably run you 45 bucks or more.

Lastly, you can buy your own handheld scanner for anywhere from 40 bucks to 400 bucks... depends on how much information you want to get. I paid 250for a 400 dollar model on sale, and it has paid for itself already.

There is no "Key-Dance" for the Impala.

It is possible that the battery is toast, as they seem to die over quite a range of ages. The owner should check the battery to make sure it is holding a charge, but it does sound like the alternator is on it's way out.
Hey, thanks Lingenfelter!

A fellow Trepper has an OBDII and yup, he paid around $300 for it. He used it on my car at one of our car meets. No codes came up but I can see how it can come in handy at times like this.

Well, its been 3 months since my first post and he hasn't replaced anything yet. I think he's driving on borrowed time. Time will tell, I guess.
 
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