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Wierd Alternator Activity


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14 replies to this topic

#1 TheSubaruJunkie

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Posted 18 October 2003 - 08:33 PM

Lately ive noticed that on my wagon, when i start the car, my voltmeter will be resting at 8volts. The lights will dim, and the car runs rough and after a few seconds (usually like 30 or 45 seconds) the alternator will kick on, the voltmeter will jump to 14volts and everything will be fine, but if I rev the engine or drive with the engine between 3000-4500rpm, the voltmeter gets awfully close to red (close to 17volts) but only for a short while. If i turn on my heater fan, it will go back to 14volts, and then after a while I can turn off the accessories and the car will remain at 14volts.

I thought maybe my belt was loose, but it seems like its too consistant to be a loose belt, always happens. Even if I run the engine for a while and let it get to 14volts, if I shut off the car and restart it it happens again.

Maybe a bad battery?
-Brian

#2 subynut

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Posted 18 October 2003 - 09:34 PM

Regulator gone :dead: :confused:

#3 Russ Hill

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Posted 18 October 2003 - 09:53 PM

Yup,
Time for a new Alternator

#4 TheSubaruJunkie

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Posted 18 October 2003 - 09:57 PM

Regulator seems to be working fine, once it has a chance to work.

-Brian

#5 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 18 October 2003 - 10:05 PM

Agreed - but since these go out so often it seems, I have played with the idea of having an automotive electrical shop rebuild one for me. When you have it done like that specifically for YOU by a local shop, they tend to do a much better job than the big rebuilders who do thousands of them every month. I was thinking about this on my wagon which has the digi-dash, and after hearing about so many of these that have failed I got to thinking. It seems that often times the replacement alt's you get from auto parts stores go bad in just a few days, so even reeplacing the alt on a regular basis (say every year) just on general principle to ward off the dreaded digi-dash burn-up seems like a risky operation. The only thing I could think of was having it professionally rebuilt for ME instead of buying a rebuilt unit. I know a place around here that I think will do it. They did my disty, and they were cheap, fast, oustanding service, and they even polished and painted it for me :slobber:

I think they do alt's too, and I'm going to check into it very soon.

Here's their web site - I can HIGHLY reccomend them for disty rebuilds:

http://www.philbingroup.com/

GD

#6 TheSubaruJunkie

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Posted 18 October 2003 - 10:07 PM

Im going to the junkyard tomorrow, and i need to get 2 alternators anyhow, so i will slap one of them in the wagon and see if that solves my problem. This alt worked great on the brat, and ive been using it as my "community alternator" switching it back and forth from the Brat to the Wagon, depending on which car I wish to drive.

-Brian

#7 edrach

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Posted 18 October 2003 - 11:45 PM

So did you try to see if the belt is loose?

#8 Turbone

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Posted 19 October 2003 - 01:44 AM

Yes Brian, its time to get another Alt. I've been going thru the same scenario with mine. Out of all the parts I have, my 86 Turbo wagon is on its 4 Alt in a about 5 months. I have checked into parts for rebuilding, its about $55+/-. We'll see what GD comes up with on his source for a rebuild amount. The older the Alt, the more sensitive the innards are, and they go dead quick and easy.
The EA81 Digidashes actually have an alarm on them when the voltage goes squirrley, but you need to shut down fast before its toasted. Everyone also needs to be looking at the Chevy/GM Alt's(from an earlier post) for a higher amp replacement too.
Rob

#9 Qman

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Posted 19 October 2003 - 07:43 AM

I have also heard that removal and installation with the battery hooked up can cause some problems. Are you disconnecting your battery Brian?

#10 edrach

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Posted 19 October 2003 - 12:36 PM

Certainly disconnecting the battery with the engine running will toast the alternator. Two other items I've found will toast an alternator: heat (i.e. turbo with its underhood temp) and excessive oil in the engine compartment. Best alternator repair place I know of is Greg's auto/marine electric in Ballard (on 14th a few blocks south of Market). He's a bit pricey but he's "old school" thorough. Best to catch him off season if you can; the boaters keep him very busy in the summertime.

#11 ShawnW

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Posted 19 October 2003 - 12:56 PM

I believe Qman meant are you disconnecting your battery when you replace the alternator.

#12 TheSubaruJunkie

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Posted 19 October 2003 - 03:12 PM

Oh yeah, most definatly. Expecially because the last alternator i fried, was fried due to me NOT disconnecting the battery before removing, and I had zapped myself a couple times.

But this Alt has never been removed with the battery connected (cause the battery is also my comunity battery as well).

-Brian

#13 LostWater

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Posted 20 October 2003 - 10:23 AM

Hey Brian,

Before u buy another subie alt, definitely consider the chevy conversion.

I just got my hi-amp (105amps) kit in from Jc Whitney and I plan on doing it this week.

It includes all the replaceable parts for the alt, so, conceivably, u could get a free toasted chevy alt at the yard and for $34 (thats what the kit costs) you do the rebuild yourself and get higher amps.

I plan on taking pics as I install the hi-amp kit as well as my rig for installing the alt in my hatch including the part number for the longer belt.

If you want higher amps, for cheap, u may want to consider the chevy.

Hopefully by the end of the week, I will have my write up ready.

Regards,

Mark

#14 TheSubaruJunkie

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Posted 20 October 2003 - 12:54 PM

I already bought the alt's, but let me know about that info, i would love to add it to the USRM!

-Brian

#15 calebz

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Posted 20 October 2003 - 12:59 PM

This alt worked great on the brat, and ive been using it as my "community alternator"



Dude!

If you got passed around like that you would be a little worn out too!




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