The electrical generator in a car is called an alternator. It transforms the engine’s mechanical energy into electrical energy, then stored in the vehicle’s battery.
In this manner, even when the car’s electrical consumers—such as the headlights, radio, and seat heating—are in use, the battery is constantly charged.
Since the battery also starts the ignition, a malfunctioning electric generator might rapidly become an issue.
The alternator, commonly known as an electric generator, is not one of a car’s worn parts. Modern alternators are highly durable and rarely malfunction.
Damage and flaws can, however, appear with any component. Repairing the alternator in this situation is frequently preferable to replacing it entirely.
Indications that an electrical generator is broken
Some symptoms point to an alternator issue. If any of these symptoms emerge, you should examine the alternator, whether at home or in a shop.
- The engine no longer starts appropriately is a primary indication of alternator issues.
- That is if you need to start the engine more frequently and it takes more than one try.
- A battery that won’t charge is another significant indicator. In most cases, the alternator is broken if a fresh battery is placed and discharges quickly.
- Another indication of a problem is the instrument panel’s battery warning light.
These flaws could exist
The four weak areas of an alternator and the power supply connected to it are where most problems are found.
These are a few of them:
- The actual electrical generator
- The charge controller
- The connectors and cables
- Using a V-belt
1. There is a problem with the electric generating alternator.
In most cases, the generator carbons are depleted if the alternator is faulty. The alternator must be replaced as the only option in this situation.
2. The charge controller
The charge regulator is frequently to blame for malfunctioning alternators. Electricity can be transmitted via it.
Only in a professional workshop can apart be thoroughly inspected to determine whether it is defective. Replacement is frequently the only option.
3. Cables and connectors
The cables and plugs connecting the battery to the alternator may be broken. Cable wear from wear-and-tear or other reasons can weaken or even stop the current flow.
4. Using a V-belt
The power flow between the engine and the alternator becomes insufficient if the V-belt is worn out or excessively slack. Although it is not broken, the alternator cannot receive kinetic energy from the engine.
A workshop or a replacement house?
Not any layperson can change an alternator. It is frequently advisable to go to a specialized workshop because there are many types of damage.
But money is also a factor in every situation. Alternator replacement, including the cost of the spare part in the store, can run up to and above 800 euros.
Modifying yourself can help you save a lot of money if you have the required tools at home and the courage to do so.
I was adjusting the electric generator gradually.
Each car has a different process for replacing the alternator. This is mainly caused by the various engine and engine compartment designs.
Locate the alternator in the engine compartment as a first step. Consequently, some of the steps may differ significantly.
- Cut the battery off.
- Locate the power generator.
- If required, remove the engine cover.
- If additional components obstruct access to the alternator, remove them.
- Unlock the tensioner for the V-belt.
- The generator’s electrical and ground connectors should be removed.
- Remove the holding screws by loosening them.
- Alternator removal
- Compare the old and new alternators.
- Reverse the sequence of all disassembly procedures. Pay close attention to the belt tension parameters and the indicated tightening torques.
Mistakes you must always avoid
It’s crucial to pay attention to the connections set up at each point when disassembling the alternator. If required, take pictures of the disassembly and name each component as you go.
Always act cautiously and thoroughly when performing such delicate work on the engine. The tightening torques are another thing to pay attention to.
The component must be mounted brand-new and can’t move with the engine. The V-tension belts are subject to the same rules. There are exact requirements that must be followed in this situation as well.