Did you know that your car contained a number of Electrical parts?

While it is easy to argue this, given the fact that you do not exactly charge or directly plug your car to a power source so that it’s electrical system can be up and running, the electrical system is very much present in all cars. The system is intertwined and they draw power from one another in other to function.

Here are some primary parts of the electrical system:


Alternator/Dynamo: They are used in modern automobiles to charge the battery and to power the electrical components of a car.




Battery: It supplies power to start the car. Also, supplies power to various equipment when generator is not able to provide enough power e.g. playing car radio with engine off or heavy duty lamps and air-con when car is idle.


Ignition Coil: This transforms the low voltage of the battery to the thousands of volts needed to create an electric spark in the spark plug to ignite the fuel.  Petrol engines need spark to burn the fuel. For diesel engine, the pump has to be kept on – which is usually done by a solenoid switch, to keep injecting fuel into the engine to keep it running.


Cooling Fans: In earlier days, the cooling fans (radiator fan) were coupled with engine. But with front wheel drives and advancements, the cooling fans are controlled electronically i.e. they are switched on when there is a requirement using a thermostat. The fans run on electricity.



HeadLamps, Tail Lamps, Blinkers, Brake Lights etc:  They are wired on a central circuit running throughout the car.

Motor/Actuators – Wiper, Power Window etc: The are used to carry out various functions in the car including controls for side (wing) mirrors.

Combination Switch: It is the switch assembly that sits under the steering wheel and used to control various things like headlights, wipers etc.

Peripherals Systems – They include stereo, clocks, cabin lights, trunk lights etc that need to be powered by electricity.

Signal Transmission: Today cars run on electronics which involve a range of sensors, transmitters etc for tyre pressure, crash sensing, oil levels etc.

Starter Motor: It is responsible for starting the engine by drawing power from the battery. Usually, it needs a lot of current because of the energy required to turn the engine.

Knowledge they say is power. Keep this at the back of your mind because they just might come in handy one day.

Leave a Reply