Last night I had the dogs out in the front yard for a late night walk. I like to walk them when it is close to midnight. The neighborhood is real quiet and there is almost no traffic on the road.
But last night I heard a car turn onto the street in front of my house and it slowed down, pulling over to the side. As I watched, the headlights grew really dim and then went out. So this guy had either a dead battery or a bad alternator. He got out of the car and saw me there with the dogs, so he called out and asked if I had any jumper cables and could I help him get the car started?
I told him that I have cables but I figured it wasn’t the battery – it was the alternator. A jump was not going to get that car started and running. I put the dogs in the house and drove across to hook up the cables. Sure enough, the car started but as soon as we pulled off the cables it died. It was the alternator, so he had to call for a tow truck after all.