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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
July 2021 it went into power save mode and 10 min later shut down and would not restart. Battery was good when checked so we changed the Alternator. When new alternator was installed the A/C on the Drivers side would not work, we changed the Actuator. That seemed to do the trick for a week or so. I then noticed a drop in Voltage when driving, had the alternator checked and it was fine but battery needed replaced. I replaced the battery. I was still getting voltage drops and when it was checked again was told the alternator was bad. We pulled the alternator, and the battery, bought new ones again, installed them, still no A/C, which is not the main issue. When driving not 20 min after the new alternator and battery was replaced I noticed the voltage dropping to below 13 when I was accelerating and then got "service battery charging system" light and the battery light came on. I pulled over, shut the car off and it went away and I was able to continue driving to work. The truck sat all day and the battery light was off upon driving home, however right before I got home got the "service battery charging system" light again. I have spent so much money on this issue and hope someone has an answer. I have read about the Battery current sensor, the fuse box, and I am at a loss as to what is causing all the issues with this truck. PLEASE HELP!!!
 

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The actuator problem happens fairly often when the battery is replaced, or alternator. As for the battery/alternator problem:
1) Did you put an AC Delco alternator in? Using aftermarket alternators on this platform can cause problems. You should be able to test the battery and alternator to see if they are good or not, and not just replace them when you have a problem. A battery/alternator tester is not an expensive tool, and some places will test them for you for free.
2) The fuse box/grounds are common problems. You may have to check the fuse box for contacts/corrosion.
3) Get a scan tool to check to see what codes are coming up. Even if the check engine light is off, your ECU will detect problems and store codes that will help you pinpoint the problem. Some places do offer a free scan, or perhaps you have a friend who has a high end scan tool.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The actuator problem happens fairly often when the battery is replaced, or alternator. As for the battery/alternator problem:
1) Did you put an AC Delco alternator in? Using aftermarket alternators on this platform can cause problems. You should be able to test the battery and alternator to see if they are good or not, and not just replace them when you have a problem. A battery/alternator tester is not an expensive tool, and some places will test them for you for free.
2) The fuse box/grounds are common problems. You may have to check the fuse box for contacts/corrosion.
3) Get a scan tool to check to see what codes are coming up. Even if the check engine light is off, your ECU will detect problems and store codes that will help you pinpoint the problem. Some places do offer a free scan, or perhaps you have a friend who has a high end scan tool.
Which fuse box? The under hood or in cabin fuse box? I put in a refurbished AC Delco alternator, twice. It is hit and miss when I have the alternator and battery checked, sometimes they come back good even with voltage drops and sometimes it says the alternator or "voltage regulator" is bad. I will have to do the scan.
 

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Which fuse box? The under hood or in cabin fuse box? I put in a refurbished AC Delco alternator, twice. It is hit and miss when I have the alternator and battery checked, sometimes they come back good even with voltage drops and sometimes it says the alternator or "voltage regulator" is bad. I will have to do the scan.
The under hood fuse box. I should note that it is normal for the voltmeter reading on your cluster to drop sometimes, as on this model it seems to somehow control the output necessary from the alternator as you drive. But if you are getting the "service battery charging system", then something is definitely wrong. I am not confident on refurbished alternators, but at least it is AC Delco. When I did mine, I got one from a salvage vehicle that had been tested as good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
ok, went to the junk yard and found an OEM alternator, had it field tested and it tested good. installed it and had it tested on vehicle, however they said the battery was bad and the machine could not test it from the remote battery posts under the hood. I pulled the battery and they tested it and it was 100% charged and tested good. So I put the battery back in and they ran the test from the battery and battery and alternator tested good. However, the driver side AC is still blowing hot. I am wondering if there is a bad ground around the negative remote post under the hood, but can not seem to find anything on this, how to locate it or how to repair it. I am going to try to pull the a/c clutch fuse later today and perhaps replace the whole fuse box as I got that from the junk yard too. Also, it is now 2 days from the OEM alternator replacement and driving to work, about 20 min, the in dash voltage meter dropped again, UGGGGG, but it did come up when I turned the a/c on. any Ideas? I hate this truck!!
 

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Again, it is normal for the voltage meter to drop sometimes. Especially when you turned on the a/c, the electrical demand will increase and the voltmeter should rise. So far it seems normal. If only the driver side A/C is hot, there are two possibilities: Driver's side actuator is shot (most likely by far), or your charge on the A/C refrigerant is slightly low. You can replace your driver's side actuator yourself if you can bend a bit. That actuator is underneath the driver side lower kick panel, but a bit to the right as the drivers sits. There are lots of YouTube videos that show you how to do this, but most show replacement of the ones by the glove compartment. Your problem is on the driver side.

The other thing that you could try is to see if you can recalibrate the actuator on the driver side, but your chances of getting that actuator to recalibrate are small. This can be done with a high end scan tool, or by disconnecting the harness of your actuator, starting the vehicle, then shutting it off and reconnecting the harness. When the system sees that the actuator is newly connected, it will try a recalibration the next time you power up the vehicle. Do not use your climate control for the first two minutes after starting the vehicle to allow the calibration to complete.

I get your frustration. This has all happened to me too, but my vehicle drives really well now that I have gotten past a lot of the problems (has 350,000 km on it now).
 

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You can also recalibrate by pulling the HVAC fuse in the fuse box under the glove box for a minute or so. See near the bottom of the instructions below. If you remove the kick panel, you should be able to see the actuator. If you change the temperature setting from very cold to very hot, you should be able to see the shaft rotate through it's full travel, IF it's good. There are two lines molded into the actuator near the shaft that show the end points of its travel.

Actuator Recalibration

When replacing the HVAC control module it will be necessary to allow the HVAC control module to perform a calibration process. When installing the HVAC control module be sure to perform the following:

Important: Do not adjust any controls on the HVAC control module while the HVAC control module is self-calibrating. If interrupted, improper HVAC performance will result.

Place the ignition switch to the OFF position.

Disconnect the scan tool.

Install the HVAC control module.

Connect all previously disconnected components.

Start the vehicle.

Wait 40 seconds for the HVAC control module to self-calibrate.

Verify that no DTCs have set as current DTCs.

When replacing the HVAC actuator it will be necessary to allow the HVAC control module to perform a calibration process. When installing the HVAC actuator be sure to perform one of the following:

Important: Do not adjust any controls on the HVAC control module while the HVAC control module is self-calibrating. If interrupted, improper HVAC performance will result.

Preferred Method (w/Scan Tool)


Clear all DTCs.

Place the ignition switch in the OFF position.

Install the HVAC actuator.

Connect all previously disconnected components.

Start the vehicle.

With the scan tool, initiate the Motor Re-calibration feature of the Heating and Air Conditioning Special Functions menu.

Verify that no DTCs have set as current DTCs.

Important: Do not adjust any controls on the HVAC control module while the HVAC control module is self-calibrating. If interrupted, improper HVAC performance will result.





Alternate Method (w/o Scan Tool)


Clear all DTCs.

Place the ignition switch to the OFF position.

Install the HVAC actuator.

Connect all previously disconnected components.

Remove the HVAC/ECAS fuse for a minimum of 10 seconds.

Install the HVAC/ECAS fuse.

Start the vehicle.

Wait 40 seconds for the HVAC control module to self-calibrate.

Verify that no DTCs have set as current DTCs.
 

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These new electrical systems are funny at best. True story, my Daughter bought a new Acadia in 2019, came over the house 2 months ago, wouldn't start. No crank. She had the same as you did, "service battery charging system" light and the battery light came on. I got our my charger and 20 minutes, cranking but no start. Charger showed below 12v Took out the battery went to Autozone, said the battery tested good. We thought so, 2 yr old battery - right... Put the battery back in and started up. We drove to Autozone, retested the battery, good, and alternator, good. 20 minutes later, she calls and tells me the voltage meter is dipping below the 12v except when she was giving it gas. I told her to call me if the voltage stayed under 12v and dose not recover... Two days later she comes over, deja vu... WTH... no start, I tighten all the grounds, looked at all the cannon plugs and connectors under the vehicle since it rained and all dry and tight. I said **** it. I jump started the Acadia with my Colorado and back at Autozone to replace the battery this time. (Too worried she would experience the same thing on the road) Autozone said, hey it's good, don't want to sell you something you don't need... I understand but replace it. He put the new battery in, and no more issues. Voltage stays over 12v with no dipping.

With the added electronics on top of the voltage loads to maintain good current flow, a fresh battery is needed and these systems will let you know when the battery is marginal...even if it did test good - twice...
 

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I was thinking I would have taken the battery to a different place the 2nd time. First place might have a bad tester, or the guy doesn't know how to use it.

(I'm guessing you're an old Airedale ; only folks I know who call them cannon plugs! :giggle: )
 

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In the last 15 yrs I've had 3 batteries with internal connector issues in 2 different vehicles. Erratic no starts. 2 AZ batteries and one Diehard. If you smacked the battery you could see the headlights come back on in one of them. Carry battery into store for testing and jostling it would reconnect internally and it would load test OK. Had to fight for replacement with a youngster on one of them.
I've gone to using Odyssey batteries if they make the size I need or Deka built batteries now. No more Johnson Control / Clarion built ones for me.
 
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