Bad Alternator..? .. engine dies when lights turned on

  1. My car would not battery power at all .   My  neighbor jumped me...after running a few minutes , he told me to turn on the lights,  I did and the car engine immediately died.....and had to be jumped started again.....he says I need a new alternator.   Is he right?   Is the alternator test Auto Zone does reliable?

I’d certainly start by having both the alternator and battery tested.

When operating with a dead battery the system voltage will be unstable, switching on lights can bring the system voltage below operating level before the alternator can react. I have had engines stall while pulling into the shop by just stepping on the brake pedal (brake lights on).

I suspect your car has been sitting unused for a period of time, recharge the battery with a battery charger.

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