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Old 12-16-2008, 11:31 PM   #1
TONOFFUN80
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Post Flickering Headlights

I got 08 malibu that the headlights flicker when the traction control or some times the abs kicks in
just wondering if this is common

thanx Chris
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Old 12-17-2008, 07:16 AM   #2
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Default Re: Flickering Headlights

Mine does the same thing when I first start the car and come to a stop but it usually quits after the car warms up.
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Old 12-17-2008, 07:34 AM   #3
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Default Re: Flickering Headlights

I would say it's common. My interior lights flicker when the rear defroster is on.
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Old 12-17-2008, 08:22 AM   #4
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Default Re: Flickering Headlights

Typical electrical power load/usage thing...when one thing sucking juice out of the system clicks on or off, another thing is similarly affected at least for that second of "click".
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Old 12-18-2008, 04:33 AM   #5
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Default Re: Flickering Headlights

I think it's because most recent GM vehicles use a sort of 'on demand' alternator setup. Basically, the alternator in older cars ALWAYS puts a load on the engine, producing current even when there's no need (battery's fully charged, no other real electrical loads). Newer vehicles somehow disengage (not to say no belt turning it, just sort of freewheeling the alternator) the alternators in these situations. So when the electrical load suddenly increases, the system is sometimes just a tick behind catching up, leading to a flicker of headlights, etc.

The 05 Terraza that my wife used to own was notorious for this, to the point that GM changed the design and replaced the alternator. You'd be driving down the road at night, and something or other cuts on (maybe the AC compressor), causing the headlights to briefly dim then jump back to normal brightness. Many owners reported having oncoming cars flash their lights back at them, as if they'd flashed their own. We were lucky enough that that didn't happen with us, and the problem was minimized greatly once the higher capacity alternator / reprogramming was done to ours.
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Old 12-18-2008, 07:37 AM   #6
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Default Re: Flickering Headlights

Btw, people are complaining about that in new generation Accords as well.
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Old 12-21-2008, 11:16 PM   #7
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Default Re: Flickering Headlights

Talk To Service Department Of Locale Dealer They Say Its Normal
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Old 01-30-2009, 09:09 PM   #8
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Default Re: Flickering Headlights

Quote:
Originally Posted by USA1fan View Post
I think it's because most recent GM vehicles use a sort of 'on demand' alternator setup. Basically, the alternator in older cars ALWAYS puts a load on the engine, producing current even when there's no need (battery's fully charged, no other real electrical loads). Newer vehicles somehow disengage (not to say no belt turning it, just sort of freewheeling the alternator) the alternators in these situations. So when the electrical load suddenly increases, the system is sometimes just a tick behind catching up, leading to a flicker of headlights, etc.

The 05 Terraza that my wife used to own was notorious for this, to the point that GM changed the design and replaced the alternator. You'd be driving down the road at night, and something or other cuts on (maybe the AC compressor), causing the headlights to briefly dim then jump back to normal brightness. Many owners reported having oncoming cars flash their lights back at them, as if they'd flashed their own. We were lucky enough that that didn't happen with us, and the problem was minimized greatly once the higher capacity alternator / reprogramming was done to ours.
my 03 malibu lights dim when i hit the brakes, but only for a second
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