Alternator problems - Nissan Forum
B13 91-94 chassis 1991-1994 Sentra and 1991-1993 NX

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post #1 of 8 Old Feb 8th, 2013, 10:57 PM Thread Starter
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Alternator problems

so this car has less than 100,xxx miles and has had both cv axles replaced, a starter, a water pump, and an alternator replaced. are these cars that bad or do I have a lemon?
the alternator is going bad again and I dont know if its worth fixing
any ideas? what all could it be ive checked the ground and the wires going to the alternator and the battery is new

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post #2 of 8 Old Feb 8th, 2013, 11:51 PM
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Both cv axles - live in town? lots of sharp corners. beats the hell out of the outer cv joints, not to mention starts/stops don't do the inner joints any good.
Starter - live in town? lots of short trips, more hits on the starter. bad maintenance? longer hits on the starter.
Water pump - Oklahoma? Hotter engine, water pump gets more of a "work out". Change/flush the coolant regularly? No? Another hit for the water pump.
Alternator - Do a lot of night driving? Lot of engine starting?
Yes to any of these? Maybe you're one of the few that puts more of these conditions on your vehicle than the rest. Who knows.
If one of my vehicles had that many parts replaced before 100k miles, I wouldn't think twice about it. Now 50K or 75K, I might start to worry.
Jist of the story...Each one of those parts is a 'wear out' item. Obviously more 'wear-able' than tires, but not as 'wear-able' than, say, piston rings.
Judging from your old posts, you bought the car used (could be wrong, but that's what it looks like).
At the same time, you bought the maintenance of the person that owned it before you.
Doesn't matter if it's got 100K or 100 miles on it. If that 100 miles was only on the drag strip, 1/8 mile at a time, and it never had an oil change, it's probably beat.

99% of the questions that are "STRANGE" have a dirt simple answer...usually answered by a dirt simple search.

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Is it just me, or does the majority overlook the obvious?

Somebody ate a whole bag of dumbass for breakfast.

Why do people continue to run a vehicle when a warning light comes on or starts flashing? Isn't that a clue that something is wrong and you probably should NOT drive it?
Is this whole car driving thing really freekin' brain surgery?

Here's something new for the crowd/clowns...
"A little bit of Google goes a long way!"

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post #3 of 8 Old Feb 10th, 2013, 09:27 AM
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The cheap alternators that are available at most auto parts stores are poor quality and don't last long. Buy an OEM remanufactured alternator; they'll cost more but should last a long time.

KA-T for life, yo!
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post #4 of 8 Old Feb 10th, 2013, 09:23 PM
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Make sure the white power feed wire to the "BAT" connection on the back of the alternator is in good shape and there is no excessive resistance in it. Also, make sure power is getting to the alternator at this connection and that the charging system warning light is operational when you turn the key to "on."
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post #5 of 8 Old Feb 11th, 2013, 10:45 AM
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Even if you are buying the so called "lifetime warranty" alternators from the discount auto parts houses, I'm not supprised the alternator has gone bad again.
While the OEM alternator offers a shorter warranty, it will generally last considerably longer.
What is your time and labor worth?

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post #6 of 8 Old Feb 15th, 2013, 10:08 PM
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I wonder if you have a sound system with amps and subwoofers. They are extremely hard on alternators.

If you go the cheap route and don't get the OEM remanufactured alternator, call around and check out who has the best warranty, and ask if you can upgrade the warranty.
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post #7 of 8 Old Feb 17th, 2013, 08:40 AM
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I've gone through 4, yes four, NAPA "premium" new,not rebuilt, lifetime warranty alternators. They last from 7 to at most 30K miles.

1993 Sentra XE auto (original owner)
2005 NISMO Frontier
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post #8 of 8 Old Feb 17th, 2013, 09:58 PM
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Re: Alternator problems

Originally Posted by Centurion View Post
I've gone through 4, yes four, NAPA "premium" new,not rebuilt, lifetime warranty alternators. They last from 7 to at most 30K miles.
Same deal with alternators I bought years ago from Advance on a '93 Saturn SL2. Went through 3 of them (all replaced under warranty) until I got one that stayed working. First alternator took me 2 1/2 hours to replace (not that easy to get to). By the end of that fiasco, I changed it in 20 minutes.

Come to think of it, my dad had a 1981 Chevy Citation that kept blowing ignition modules. Mechanic kept using NAPA modules, until we used a different garage for the last one who used an AC/Delco. We pulled the old NAPA module apart to find they out some type of piece in the circuitry that would cause it to fail after enough heat built up and broke the circuit (basically melted the internals). That told me at a very young age to stay away from their stuff.

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