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 Electrical Alternator issue

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SEEVWTV
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PostSubject: Electrical Alternator issue   8/3/2010, 9:06 pm

For some reason by battery is getting drained by something when I drive. I think it could be the alternator but I want make sure first before I drop the money on a new one. Should I run a ground from the alternator? I'm currently running one now, could that be the problem? Can alternators be fixed or is it best just to get another?
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muddobber
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/3/2010, 9:13 pm

is the idiot light coming on when you turn the key on?
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/3/2010, 9:41 pm

No, but I think the bulb could be bad.
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muddobber
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/3/2010, 9:47 pm

that could be your problem. the alt. is not getting excited so it doesn't know when it needs to work
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/3/2010, 9:48 pm

Once they don't charge are they done or can they be fixed?
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muddobber
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/3/2010, 9:58 pm

once your light is working then you will know. do you have an amp or volt gauge in the car? that will show you as soon as you start up
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MadMike
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/3/2010, 10:43 pm

I had the same problem once. I didn't have a bulb in the dash for the idiot light. A lot of time and money later, that's all it was in my case.
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/3/2010, 11:18 pm

Knowing is always half the battle. I just talked to my dad and he was saying that the old regulator box that's under the back seat could still be pulling power from some where.
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the-jerm
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/4/2010, 8:36 am

Def get another bulb for the dash. I can come by thursday after work to take a look but without the light its not going to help much. Let me know.
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/4/2010, 10:47 am

That would be awesome! Thank you!
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/4/2010, 9:39 pm

You NEED a bulb for the car to charge. I will bet money the bulb is your issue.
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 12:51 am

I hope so!
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panther
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 2:16 am

Did not know that
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 8:52 am

Here's how it works. The light has two wires coming off of it. One goes to a switched source (has power when the key is on). The other side goes to the alternator.

When you turn the key on, power goes through the bulb, and grounds through the alternator. This energizes the alternator (basically wakes it up) so the alternator starts charging. So now, you have 12v going from the alternator back to the bulb. Because you have 2 power wires and no ground, the bulb goes out. This is why the "gen" light stays on after the engine is running some times. It may take a rev of over 2000 rpm's to get the alternator to energize and start producting current.

This is also why at night, with the headlights on and the radio going, you'll see the "gen" light on a little. This is showing you there is a voltage difference between the two power wires at the bulb. The alternator is putting out 12v, but the other wire, at the fuse block, is seeing less than 12v because of the headlights and stereo.

So even a straight wire from the fuse block to the alternator won't start it charging, it needs a load, such as a bulb or diode. This is why I'm sure it's the source of your problem.
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panther
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 10:10 am

cool
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 10:33 am

Thank you so much for that breakdown! I'm really hoping that's the problem. My wiring harness is in a bit of a cluster.
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 10:35 am

I love working on vehicle electrical systems. I would love to help, but I'm working 7 days a week and going to school so I just don't have the time right now.

Feel free to post up any issues or questions you have, and I'll help online.
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 10:41 am

Thank you so much Dave!
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Hellafast
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 11:02 am

Dave's the man. Glad your working and involved again. We missed your knowledge.
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the-jerm
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 1:02 pm

Got the bulb. See ya after work!
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 1:05 pm

Dude, you are awesome! What kind of beer do you drink?
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the-jerm
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 2:17 pm

Yuengling, Newcastle, Heineken, Miller Lite . . . or anything else that contains alchohol Laughing
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 4:45 pm

Well, I will have something cold for you.
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Hellafast
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PostSubject: Re: Electrical Alternator issue   8/5/2010, 5:34 pm

SEEVWTV wrote:
Once they don't charge are they done or can they be fixed?

You can take any alt or gen to Hutcherson Auto Electric
(813) 247-4365
701 S 50th St, Tampa, FL 33619
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