The electrical system of your car is just as important as any other system since many parts under the hood run on electricity and are not powered by the engine. This includes the fuel pump, oil pump and fan that keeps the engine cool.
You may already know that the car itself won't even start if it has electrical problems since the vehicle's starter actually turns the engine over, and the starter is powered by the battery. However, the battery itself is not the only electrical part that might malfunction. Note a few things that might be wrong with your car's electrical systems when something electrical doesn't work properly or outright shuts down:
Alternator and alternator belt
The alternator recharges your battery as your car runs. If the alternator goes bad, the battery will soon run down. If your car won't start or the electrical systems begin to power down, then fail, and then the car stalls outright, this usually means the alternator needs replacing.
The alternator belt can also be the culprit. Like your car's fan belt, the alternator belt goes over some pulleys in the alternator to keep it operating. If this belt is loose, cracked, worn or otherwise old and in need of replacing, it can stop the alternator from working so that the battery goes bad. If you hear a squealing sound before the electrical systems fail, this often signals that the alternator belt is bad, while the alternator itself may still be in good repair and workable.
A solenoid is a coil that carries an electrical current. In a car, a solenoid carries an electrical current to many of its electrical parts. If the brakes start to fail, this could be a problem with the solenoid, as an electrical current is needed to operate the brake fluid pump and the callipers attached to the brake. There is also a solenoid attached to the starter, so if the starter itself is in good repair but the car fails to start, the solenoid may need replacing.
Fuses and cables
Check the fuses in your car; the owner's manual should tell you where the fuse box is located, and any blown fuses will usually be popped out. These are affordable and easy to replace. You can also check the battery cables that are hooked to the battery itself; if the cables are worn or not tightly clamped around the battery, this can interrupt the flow of electricity. This is also an easy fix.
Contact companies that offer car batteries for more information and assistance.