I sell alternators all day every day - and a poor battery is often the root cause of alternator failure. If your battery is 'Open Circuit' the alternator will either not start charging at all or will erratically bounce from low to high voltage. This causes the regulator to fail prematurely (or immediately!)
Regarding this, what keeps the battery charged in a car?
The battery is charged by an alternator on modern cars, or by a dynamo on earlier ones. Both are types of generator , and are driven by a belt from the engine. The alternator consists of a stator - a stationary set of wire coil windings, inside which a rotor revolves.
Why the alternator is not charging?
Problem: Lights flare excessively as engine speed increases. Solution: This is usually caused by an overcharged battery, which is typically the result of high alternator voltage. This can be caused by a short or ground in the rotor field winding within the alternator or a defective regulator.
Is it a dead battery or alternator?
If jump starting gets your engine started and running, but the car will not start again once you turn it off, the battery is probably the problem. In this case, the alternator is doing its job of keeping the battery going once it has been jumped, but the battery can't hold a charge when the alternator is shuts off.