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Old 06-04-2017, 09:17 PM
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Default Alternator

The Dodge 3500 had the amp gauge drop to zero on the way home today. Tested the output terminal on the alternator with the engine off at 12.3v, then again with the engine running and got the same 12.3v.

I had replaced the alternator about 5 years ago. Seems like it is a goner. Gonna get it tested at a auto parts store tomorrow to verify, then likely bring back a new one.
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Old 06-04-2017, 10:07 PM
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They don't make them like they used to. At least you made it home.


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Old 06-04-2017, 10:52 PM
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Its interesting, I used to build alts. That was several versions of me, ago.

Here is what I remember, WAI, makes ALL of the knock off Alts, I dont care who you buy it from, what box its in, if its not OEM, its made by WAI in a different box. Ive been away from this for years, so things may changed.

Point being, dont buy a trusted name brand, if its new and made in China, same Alt, different box, different price.

Rebuilt is different, although everyone uses WAI parts to rebuild.

Here is the interesting part, I was at the local re-builder, who has been around, that I can remember, going on 35 years. Couple years back, we where visiting, and talking about this WAI China thing. He goes on to tell me, that the WAI units from China are of better quality than most of the OEM units.

Im thinking, WTF ? How can that be ? He goes on to tell me, most of his auto business is selling the WAI units because they are good and he cant rebuild just about any automotive unit cheaper than he can buy a brand new one.

When you factor in all of the numbers there, that is breath taking. Being that a rebuild usually is nothing but minor wear items, and a voltage regulator/rectifier.

Things that make you go hmmm...
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Old 06-04-2017, 11:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Windy_Acres View Post
Its interesting, I used to build alts. That was several versions of me, ago.

Here is what I remember, WAI, makes ALL of the knock off Alts, I dont care who you buy it from, what box its in, if its not OEM, its made by WAI in a different box. Ive been away from this for years, so things may changed.

Point being, dont buy a trusted name brand, if its new and made in China, same Alt, different box, different price.

Rebuilt is different, although everyone uses WAI parts to rebuild.

Here is the interesting part, I was at the local re-builder, who has been around, that I can remember, going on 35 years. Couple years back, we where visiting, and talking about this WAI China thing. He goes on to tell me, that the WAI units from China are of better quality than most of the OEM units.

Im thinking, WTF ? How can that be ? He goes on to tell me, most of his auto business is selling the WAI units because they are good and he cant rebuild just about any automotive unit cheaper than he can buy a brand new one.

When you factor in all of the numbers there, that is breath taking. Being that a rebuild usually is nothing but minor wear items, and a voltage regulator/rectifier.

Things that make you go hmmm...
If the two alternators I have now test bad, my neighbor is going to disassemble and see what part(s) failed and then try to make one good one from the two. He used to rebuild alternators, starters and generators years ago.
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Old 06-05-2017, 07:01 AM
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Most likely just needs brushes.

https://www.genosgarage.com/product/...rebuild-kits-3


If it is bad don't get anything other than a Denso replacement. Anything else will just disappoint you.

Also a fun note is there is no voltage regulator on the third gens, the PCM controls it. Also the amp gauge is just there to make people feel good. It's numeric number scale has no bearing on the actual charge amount. Of course it does work good to know if you are charging or not but that's it.
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Old 06-05-2017, 08:25 AM
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Chris, it happens. I just had to replace mine last November. It was OEM, and shortly thereafter, I had to replace both batteries, which were also original.
These may be related events, as an alternator seldom fails instantly unless shorted, but may have pumped out a mix of ac-dc due to a failing rectifier. This would do in old batteries, and overwork the alternator attempting to charge them.
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Old 06-05-2017, 10:16 AM
Samcord Samcord is offline
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Here is a good video that covers some good test procedures for alternators. You need a clamp on D.C. ammeter. He put on a rebuilt alternator that did not produce the rated output. If I remember next time I need one, I will have the replacement tested before I take it out of the store or install it.
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Old 06-05-2017, 10:16 AM
Samcord Samcord is offline
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Oops, here is the video.

https://youtu.be/fYjuP8FBUu8
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Old 06-05-2017, 11:11 AM
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I bought one from a auto parts store once, I got it home, removed it from the box and as I always do went to give the pulley a spin and was very surprised that it would not move, had to take it back and exchange it.
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Old 06-05-2017, 11:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Windy_Acres View Post
...He goes on to tell me, most of his auto business is selling the WAI units because they are good and he cant rebuild just about any automotive unit cheaper than he can buy a brand new one.

When you factor in all of the numbers there, that is breath taking. Being that a rebuild usually is nothing but minor wear items, and a voltage regulator/rectifier...
15 years ago when I arrived in FL, there were at least a dozen "auto electrical rebuilding" shops in the area. Now I think there is one in Orlando and one in Daytona. Last one I used was in Sanford to rebuild a forklift starter about 10 years ago. He is long gone--probably retired. His shop was dark and dingy with limited inventory.

I used to rebuild Delcotrons for $12 I think the kit cost me. Regulator, brushes, drive-end bearing--can't remember if it included anything else. All my old clunkers had Delcotrons fitted on 'em with a little bulb hanging off the back as the indicator.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinDodge View Post
Also a fun note is there is no voltage regulator on the third gens, the PCM controls it. Also the amp gauge is just there to make people feel good.
Most car's alternators are controlled by the PCM for the last decade now. At least it will sometimes set a code if there are issues. Haven't heard of many burning up because of it.

A voltmeter is a far more valuable gauge to have in a vehicle. An ammeter is so 20th century...
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