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New alternator and a few questions by fastblack
Started on: 09-06-2013 06:01 PM
Replies: 20 (680 views)
Last post by: fierobug on 09-15-2013 06:53 AM
fastblack
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Report this Post09-06-2013 06:01 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
87 GT 5-speed-stock

I just got done putting a re-man alternator in my car and as the title says, I have a couple questions. For starters, I put the 78 amp alternator for an 87 (not 88) in. The volt gauge is reading dang near the top end, just under the red. Should I be worried about this? Everything seems to be working fine other than that, even my windows are quite a bit speedier now

I pretty much have the answer to my second question but I'll ask it anyway. Once I got everything put back together I went for a quick drive. As I pulled up to the first stop sign on my route I noticed a whirring noise consistent with RPM's, Am I correct in assuming that the belt is too tight? As soon as I noticed it, I went back home and shut her down.
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Arns85GT
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Report this Post09-06-2013 06:32 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Arns85GTClick Here to Email Arns85GTSend a Private Message to Arns85GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Most likely it is an alignment issue. Double check your belt riding on the grooves. Also, make sure that your drive pulley on the alternator is a 5 groove not a 6 groove. This is the most common error with suppliers.

For the record, you are always better off getting the 95 amp alternator (which was used with AC.)

I have a Bosch which has a good warranty and puts out well at idle.

Also, you may want to upgrade with the Rodney Dickman tensioner pulley. It takes the squeals out and provides a good solid contact surface so it doesn't slip in the wet.

Hope this helps

Arn

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fastblack
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Report this Post09-06-2013 06:36 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
It has the correct pulley on it, I had to switch them out because the new one came with a single groove (for a "V" belt) pulley on it. I will check to make sure the belt is seated properly on all pulleys here in a bit.

On a side note, I've been putting off installing Rodney's tensioner here for a while. It would definitely save me a lot of headaches when jobs like this come along. Putting tension on the serpentine belt on an 87 V6 by yourself is no fun at all. I usually either get it too tight or too loose.

Thanks for the input!
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Dodgerunner
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Report this Post09-06-2013 09:05 PM Click Here to See the Profile for DodgerunnerClick Here to visit Dodgerunner's HomePageClick Here to Email DodgerunnerSend a Private Message to DodgerunnerEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Or I still sell these.

http://www.fiero.nl/forum/F.../HTML/039384.html#p0

[This message has been edited by Dodgerunner (edited 09-08-2013).]

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jhgraham
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Report this Post09-06-2013 10:33 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jhgrahamClick Here to visit jhgraham's HomePageClick Here to Email jhgrahamSend a Private Message to jhgrahamEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I (today) just put an 94 amp alternator on my 86 with A/C because I had bearing whine, and a noticeable belt squeal. I solved the belt squeal with Rodney’s idler. After installation the bearing whine was still there. I then replaced the water pump and found it to be the culprit. I surmise the water pump, because of its condition, caused the belt squeal because of excessive torque required, and the bearing whine/rattle was because the water pump was totally trashed. I recommend the Rodney idler to fix the belt squeal.
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Marvin McInnis
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Report this Post09-07-2013 01:33 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Marvin McInnisClick Here to visit Marvin McInnis's HomePageSend a Private Message to Marvin McInnisEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by fastblack:

The volt gauge is reading dang near the top end, just under the red. Should I be worried about this?



Get a good-quality voltmeter and measure the voltage at the battery. If it's much above 14.5 volts after a few minutes with the engine running at fast idle then you may have a bad alternator or regulator (inside the alternator). Overvoltage will quickly kill a perfectly good battery, and it may damage other electronics in the car as well.
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James Bond 007
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Report this Post09-07-2013 10:41 AM Click Here to See the Profile for James Bond 007Send a Private Message to James Bond 007Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Marvin McInnis:


Get a good-quality voltmeter and measure the voltage at the battery. If it's much above 14.5 volts after a few minutes with the engine running at fast idle then you may have a bad alternator or regulator (inside the alternator). Overvoltage will quickly kill a perfectly good battery, and it may damage other electronics in the car as well.


I agree. Even new alternaters can be bad.Thats why I dont like buying alternaters or starters from Autozone. Your battery is being over chargerd, and could end up being fryed or even burst! Have your alternater tested, if that doesnt solve the problem, have the battery tested next.
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fastblack
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Report this Post09-07-2013 03:50 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I backed the alternator off a bit to see if it was too tight and still have the whine and now a squeal at start. Gonna tighten it back up and get the alternator and battery checked. Hoping it's not the water pump but it does have 156,xxx miles on the clock. Kind of strange that the water pump would start whining right when I replace the alternator but stranger things have happened.
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msrservices
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Report this Post09-07-2013 05:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for msrservicesClick Here to visit msrservices's HomePageSend a Private Message to msrservicesEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I upgraded my alternator years ago and ordered Rodney's idler then. It's the best.

Before the idler, my two issues were belt squeal and slipping in the rain. The idler as eliminated both problems.
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fastblack
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Report this Post09-09-2013 08:42 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
A quick update. I left the car sit over the weekend, it was behind my Bonneville so I went to move it this morning and the battery was dead again. I guess I haven't quite tracked down that battery leach, more on that later.

Anywho, I jump started it this afternoon and put it in the shop on the charger. Once it was charged I tested the battery without the car running and it was at 12.57 volts. I started it up and let it run for a few minutes and tested at the battery again while running and it was at 15.23 volts. Soooooooo it looks like I'll be taking it back to Napa for a replacement On a side note, I'm pretty certain the whine is coming from the alternator and not the water pump. I went digging around with a redneck stethoscope (piece of pipe) and the whine sounded like it was coming from the alternator.

Now onto my battery leach question. I shut the car off, unhooked the positive battery terminal and let it set for a bit (actually had a beer). I was curious and tested the battery again and now it read 12.34 volts. With the positive terminal unhooked would a battery lose volts that quickly? I just had the battery tested at the place I bought it and he said it was good but I'm starting to wonder. If it is indeed good, is it possible for a bad ground to drain the battery like that? The terminals at the battery are old (probably original). I do have a friend with a load tester and may be inviting him over some night.
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Dodgerunner
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Report this Post09-10-2013 08:45 PM Click Here to See the Profile for DodgerunnerClick Here to visit Dodgerunner's HomePageClick Here to Email DodgerunnerSend a Private Message to DodgerunnerEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
If you have a volt meter you can use it to measure the current draw from the battery to the + cable.
Start with a high current setting and see what you got. Make sure all the lights, doors etc are closed and off.
With the radio off and ecm drawing power you should only see a draw or around 50-100 milliamp or so. If you see more then that you have something drawing power. But make sure you don't have a light or security system drawing something it should not.
If you do start pulling fuses and see if it goes away then find what is on that fuse.
You will see a current jump when you first connect the power which is usually caused by the headlight module resetting but it should not last very long.

[This message has been edited by Dodgerunner (edited 09-10-2013).]

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fastblack
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Report this Post09-11-2013 12:10 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I was using a friend's multi-meter and have since given it back. Getting the replacement alternator in today and will probably drive over to my friend's house to try and track down the draw. Might be easier with 2 people anyway. Thanks for the help all!
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fastblack
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Report this Post09-12-2013 11:16 AM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Welllll, the story continues. I returned the defective alternator yesterday and found out that Napa had a: sold me the wrong alternator and b: sold me an alternator that they knew what bad. Whatever, sh!t happens right? So I get the new alternator in and no more whine. Still running a tad high on the volts but slightly better. Go over to my buddy's house and load test the battery. The battery is borderline, it's not 100% but at the same time it shouldn't die as quick as it does. With the door shut and everything off it was drawing 163 mA so we started pulling fuses. Pulled all of the fuses and the draw did not drop.

I rebuilt the starter last year, the alternator is new, could not locate a draw by pulling fuses, and I checked the wires between the battery and starter/alternator and they looked good. Where do I look next for this battery draw??
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Dodgerunner
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Report this Post09-12-2013 03:50 PM Click Here to See the Profile for DodgerunnerClick Here to visit Dodgerunner's HomePageClick Here to Email DodgerunnerSend a Private Message to DodgerunnerEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Wow, the amount of draw is so low and close to normal I don't know if you really have a problem.
If you did all the fuses the last thing to try is to disconnect one or the other of the fusable links on the post below the C500 connector and see what the result is. However those do have some draw as the ecm and radio memory is maintained on those.
However with all the fuses out and the fusable links off there should "probably" be no draw at all on the battery.
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fastblack
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Report this Post09-12-2013 04:35 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I was wondering if that was a normal draw. I'm wondering if the battery has a bad cell in it. The Carquest where I got it claims up and down that it's good and will not warranty it but as I previously stated my friend's load tester showed otherwise. It wasn't completely toast but was weak. I had the car out last night and parked it around 10:30-11 o'clock and it did not have enough juice this morning at 9ish to start the car.

I do notice a "click" coming from the front of the car when the battery is hooked up and after some digging noticed I get the same "click" when switching on the parking lights. I unplugged the headlight motors one at a time and tested the draw and no change. Not sure if this is normal or not.

Thanks for all the help Dodgerunner!
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fastblack
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Report this Post09-12-2013 05:54 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Another update:

Been messing around with this off and on throughout the day, here's what I have come up with. I disconnected the wires on the top post below the C500 and the draw was still there, just slightly lower. I then disconnected the wire that runs from the battery to the bottom post below the C500 and there was no draw at all (expected but I can now definitely rule out the starter). I then reconnected all of the wires below the C500 and disconnected the wire AT the alternator and the draw was still there. With all of this considered I have it narrowed down to whatever the "other" wire coming off the bottom post below the C500 is connected to., it's red and slightly smaller in size compared to the one that runs to the alternator. I absolutely hate tracking wires across an engine bay so if somebody could just let me know what that wire is for, that would be great. Otherwise I guess I'll just have to do it. Taking a break from it for now though, may start in again tomorrow afternoon.

Again, the draw is right around 150-160 or so mA.

EDIT: Nevermind, it goes to the ECM. Now my question is, are there some common problems that would make the ECM drain the battery??

[This message has been edited by fastblack (edited 09-12-2013).]

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Dodgerunner
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Report this Post09-12-2013 11:13 PM Click Here to See the Profile for DodgerunnerClick Here to visit Dodgerunner's HomePageClick Here to Email DodgerunnerSend a Private Message to DodgerunnerEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Tomorrow I'm going to take a reading of what my system draw is as I don't remember for sure. Will post back. I just know a couple other GM''s I have done ran 50-70ma. Options could make a difference though.

On a different note my brother bought a brand new battery and it seem to have the same problem your having. Had it tested at the parts store and they swore it was good. He took it back for a refund and bought one somewhere else. Problem solved.
So the moral of the story is testing it not a 100% guarantee.
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fastblack
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Report this Post09-12-2013 11:19 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I would appreciate that, thanks again.

FYI: the only real "aftermarket" electronic on the car is the radio, nothing special, just a Pioneer that's about 7 years old that was laying around when I bought the car.
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fastblack
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Report this Post09-13-2013 05:07 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fastblackSend a Private Message to fastblackEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Well I can finally wrap this thread up. Turns out it was actually the alternator wire. Dumb ol' me disregarded the ogre's advice and didn't disconnect the ECM reset and test. Did that today and the draw was still there, only thing left was the alt. wire. I got some 6 ga wire and replaced the whole thing. All said and done I am only showing 10-20 mA. Only thing left to do now is take that junk battery back, if they won't warranty it I'm going to demand my money back and go elsewhere. It was fully charged last night and left unhooked and it is now below 10 volts

Anywho, thanks everybody for the help, glad to put this behind me.
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Dodgerunner
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Report this Post09-13-2013 06:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for DodgerunnerClick Here to visit Dodgerunner's HomePageClick Here to Email DodgerunnerSend a Private Message to DodgerunnerEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Glad you got it resolved. I measured mine today and got about 60ma.
However mine is a 85GT with 88 headlight system and different radio also. So a little different but still in the ballpark.

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fierobug
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Report this Post09-15-2013 06:53 AM Click Here to See the Profile for fierobugClick Here to Email fierobugSend a Private Message to fierobugEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Thanks fastblack and dodgerunner, learned alot from your exchange. Never give up till you find the bugger! That's what is great about this forum.
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