How to Fix Check Charging System Toyota Camry

The charging system warning becomes active on the Toyota Camry’s dashboard if something wrong with the battery or alternator. You can shut off this warning light by checking and fixing the issue to avoid causing loss of power, a damaged battery, or getting trapped in the road. But, how to check charging system on Toyota Camry to turn off the light?

You have to raise the hood and check the battery connection, voltage level, alternator belt, and wiring. You may also need to use a computer and a code reader to fix the check charging system issue quickly. Let’s dig in deep!

What Does Check Charging System Mean on Toyota Camry?

The check charging system light on the Toyota Camry’s dashboard indicates that the car is running only on battery power. The car’s battery is recharged and supply power at a time when the car is moving. If its charging system malfunction, the battery only provides power. Since the car’s charging system doesn’t work, the check charging system warning light activates on the dashboard.

The Toyota Camry’s charging system may fail due to plenty of reasons including a damaged battery, faulty alternator, or jammed terminals. If you keep driving your Toyota Camry with this warning light, the car may lose power suddenly and put you in trouble.

Why does Toyota Camry Show Check Charging System Light?

Lots of things can activate the check charging system light on your Toyota Camry and the most common reasons are:

1. Faulty Alternator

Most Toyota Camry owners who had experienced the charging system issue, needed to replace the alternator. Though an alternator may last up to 500,000 km, it can get damaged and prevent the cars from charging the battery. 

A loose connection between the battery and alternator may also trigger the check charging system light on your Toyota Camry 2016. An alternator becomes faulty due to plenty of factors including loose mounting bolts, loose drive pulley, faulty diode, or faulty stator.

2. Damaged Battery

If the “Check Charging System” warning light turns on in your Toyota Camry, it doesn’t automatically mean the alternator is weak or has failed. The battery’s bad cell may also prevent it from recharging. Toyota Camry’s battery typically needs to replace every five years

Damaged Battery

3. Corrosive Terminal

If you keep the electric gadgets of your Toyota Camry on throughout the night, the battery terminals may become corrosive over time. Hence, it can wreck the battery’s functionality and turn on the check charging system light on the dashboard.  The terminal may also become jammed due to rust particularly if you left the car unused for a long time.

Corrosive Terminal

4. Defective Electric Connection

A vehicle has numerous cables and the warning light can come on if any of those are blown or the fuse gets loose.  To fix the problem, you must make sure that all the wiring is secure. Wiring issues may also trigger the brake lights or headlights.

5. Problem with ECU

If you have a newer model Toyota Camry, possibly the defective engine control unit (ECU) has turned on the “Check Charging System” light on its dashboard. If you notice a checking engine light at a time, the ECU defiantly needs to be diagnosed.

Problem with ECU

How to Check the Charging System Toyota Camry?

Checking the charging system on a Toyota Camry isn’t a complex process as it only requires a bit of skill and some times. The procedure:

How to Check the Charging System Toyota Camry

Check the Battery

Start the “Toyota Camry charging system” troubleshooting process by checking the battery. Rise the hood and check the connection of the battery. Make sure all the wires are attached tightly.

Check the Battery

Then check if the battery holding the charge or not. Use a voltmeter or a battery tester to check the battery’s voltage. The voltage should be a bit above 13 bolts with the engine running. If not, the battery has a problem and you’ll have to replace it to disappear the light.

Inspect the Alternator

If the battery is working well, check the belt that driving the alternator and look for any broken wires. The belt that drives the alternator should be intact. If everything looks fine, pull the alternator and check its output at both idle and under load. If the alternator is causing the issue, it’ll be best to replace it.

Check Other Components

Another thing you can check is a broken wire hidden behind the wrap. The defective voltage regulator can also trigger the check charging system light on your Toyota Camry’s dashboard. If so, replace the regulator. 

If the check charging system light is still on, it’s time to call an expert mechanic as the issue can be the result of a combination of several causes. Mechanics also use computers and code readers to detect the source of the problem quickly and fix the problem appropriately.

How to Reset the Check Charging System Error on a Toyota Camry?

The “Check the charging system” light indicates the possibility of serious issues with the charging system. Hence there is no easy and quick way to reset this warning light. To disappear this light, you have to inspect the car’s charging system manually to address and solve the underlying issue and shut off the light. So you can either start the troubleshooting process by yourself or bring the car to a professional.

Cost to Fix the Check Charging System Issue on Toyota Camry

The source of the problem determines the repair cost of the check charging system. For example, if you need to replace the alternator belt to turn off the check charging system on a Toyota Camry, the auto shop will charge between $95 and $114 including labor costs.

But if you need to replace the alternator, you’ll have to spend between $435 and $633. Replacing the battery is the costliest that you’ll want to avoid. The average cost for a Toyota Camry battery replacement is between $721 and $728 where labor cost is around $26 to $33 and the price of the part is around $695.

Can you Drive your Toyota Camry with the Check Charging System on?

Check charging system isn’t a sign of engine error. So, technically you can drive your Toyota Camry with a check charging system light. But the fact is how long can you drive with a warning light? Not too long.  Remember, the “check charging system” light mostly turns on when the battery can’t recharge. So if you keep driving with this error, your Toyota Camry can cause suddenly lose power and trap you on the road.

Even you won’t be able to start the engine the next time. This can put you in trouble if you go out for a long distance where there is no auto repair shop. If you don’t solve this issue properly, the battery may discharge completely and prevent the engine from turning on.

So if you notice a check charging system light on your Toyota Camry, bring it to the nearest repair shop. The mechanic will use a multi-meter, a battery load tester, and a code reader to diagnose and fix the problems.

 If you must need to go somewhere before fixing the problem, keep portable battery chargers and jumper cables for safety.

Also Read: How Long Can you Drive on a Bad Tie Rod


Why does the Toyota Camry check charging system come on and the car isn’t starting?

It means you’ve neglected the issue for a long time and now the battery has lost power completely. So, the electric components aren’t getting power supply, resulting in the engine isn’t starting.

Why does the Check charging system light go on and off on my Toyota Camry?

It can happen due to lots of reasons including loose or corroded battery cables or faulty voltage regulators. The damaged plate inside the battery may also cause these unexpected issues. If the problem continues, the charging system may fail completely, and the battery won’t recharge and get damaged fully.

Why my Toyota Camry shows a check charging system light when the engine is on but not running?

After turning on the car, the electronics are draining the battery under minimum voltage. So the ECU activates the check charging system light to warn you. It isn’t concerning and the light should shut off automatically after you start running the car.

Final Words

Knowing how to check the charging system on a Toyota Camry can help you both prevent damaging the battery and getting trapped on the road. Even it’s fairly easy to troubleshoot the check charging system issue at a home garage.

But if you are unable to diagnose, bring the car to a licensed mechanic instead of neglecting the issue. Lastly, replace the battery every five years and routinely check the other related component to avoid triggering the check charging system light. 

My name is Henry Roberts and I am an experienced car mechanic with over 15 years of expertise in the automotive industry. I am currently running a Auto Repair Shop in Denver, Colorado. I have been servicing and repairing vehicles at my shop, where i have built a solid reputation for my skill and knowledge. I am passionate about sharing my automotive knowledge through blogging and my goal is to provide accurate and helpful information to car owners to keep their vehicles in perfect condition.

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