Alternator gone bad - Nissan Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 Old Mar 18th, 2017, 09:49 PM Thread Starter
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Alternator gone bad

The exxy was parked on driveway and after the blizzard we had, the engine bay had some snow.

On Tuesday morning at work(morning break), i went to Tim to get some top fuel(dark rost and espresso added) to kick 5th gear in. When i started the engine i heard a noise as if something was rubbing on a fan, i gave it some gas and it was louder.
I drove to Tim's and the noise still there and a minute later, it started to smell like something rubbing on a fan lol(electric motor burning hot) if you don't know what it is, take a sniff at an amplifier or cable decoder hot with some dirt mixed in.
Since i only have 15 min break i had to keep moving and inspect that at lunch time.
I was surprise to see some melted snow ot top of the battery and i m pretty sure the alternator was shorted by the water touching both battery poles.

Restarted the engine at lunch time and the noise was there, checked the voltage and it was at 14,6v(normal)

On the drive home , the noise was not as loud and it had the same voltage.
On Wednesday morning rechecked the voltage and it was at 11,6v and it never went up again.
Restarted the engine at lunch time and the voltage was at 11,3v. On my way back home on Thursday voltage dropped at 11v and kept falling as the meters went by untill the third stop sign before i got home.
Na gas pedal at all,driving only on iddle to die 100m further, 600m from home.
I had planned to park the exxy last week but the blizzard made me wait another week at a cost of an alternator.

The civic is on the road and the exxy is parked. If i sell the civic, i 'll repair the exxy if not i ll do it before next winter.




HO MALA?
Acarta pà grota



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post #2 of 13 Old Mar 18th, 2017, 10:18 PM
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similar thing happened to me last summer, although I'd didn't get the smell.

The car went into limp mode and I crawled into a parking lot, 200m after leaving home. Luckily I have another car and a fully charged marine battery.

I could start the Exxy from the other car and with the marine battery, but the moment I took the jumper cable off, the exxy sputtered and died. I managed to get it back home by running the jumper cables back into the cab to the marine battery on the floor.

I figured the alternator was shot and maybe the battery too. When running, the voltages between the alternator and the battery were all over the place. Took the battery to Canadian Tire and they tested it for free. All good.

Before I went and got another alternator (and only because the parts place was closed), I disconnected every electrical connection between the alternator and the battery one by one. Scrubbed them down with sandpaper and a wire brush. The dirtiest ones were the kind of triple connection at the battery terminal.

Once I got the battery recharged and everything reconnected, the voltages were dead steady and have been ever since.

I know my Exxy had been Krown Rustproofed religiously by the previous owner. It looked like some of the connections looked a little oily. I was surprised how little contamination to took to make a connection go bad. Took me an hour and saved me the cost of an alternator, maybe you get lucky too.
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post #3 of 13 Old Mar 19th, 2017, 06:10 AM Thread Starter
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I didn't do the car running unplug the battery test yet.
I m pretty busy at work and lately, it s been cold. As the temperature is going up, i'll be up to the tests on the car.
A coworker has a sentra se-r and he offered me a used alternator he has.



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post #4 of 13 Old Mar 19th, 2017, 07:45 AM
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Smells are always a bad sign, unless they are spring related.
Let us know if the sentra alternator works.
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post #5 of 13 Old Mar 19th, 2017, 08:47 AM
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I had to replace my alternator last fall. It died on the 401 after being parked in a ParknFly for about a week.
Not sure exactly the cause but it was a fairly easily DIY fix (after an incredibly expensive tow).

I have heard the 'disconnect your battery' method to test the alternator is not a good option anymore. It may have worked great back when cars had carburetors and cap&rotor firing, but with computer control nowadays it can cause some harm to the engine.

Cheers
Andrew
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post #6 of 13 Old Mar 19th, 2017, 09:08 AM Thread Starter
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I don't know if a bad battery in a car car burn down an alternator, but in a motorcycle it surely can. In my motorcycle ,it costed me 800$ in parts plus labor.
The new battery i ve installed in my civic was totally charged before it was installed.


I didn't wanted to boost the exxy with my lexus(hybrid) because all of the electronics. The funny part was carrying a spare battery in the trunk like a jeep with a gas can in the back.


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post #7 of 13 Old Mar 19th, 2017, 09:10 AM
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Yeah a bad battery can put undue strain on the alternator and burn it down quicker.

My remanufactured alternator cost a couple hundred dollars from PartSource plus core charge
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post #8 of 13 Old Mar 20th, 2017, 06:45 PM
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Yeah, a bad battery can fry the voltage regulator in the alternator. A bad voltage regulator can fry a battery too. So sometimes, it is a bit of a chicken and an egg scenario.

But disconnecting the battery while the car is running is not a good thing. Voltage regulators need feedback from the battery to operate properly. If the alternator's voltage regulator is bad, you risk frying the computer.

Much better to remove the alternator, take it to a shop and have them bench test it. Luckily, removing the alternator is easy on the X trail (another reason to avoid the Ford Escape)
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post #9 of 13 Old Mar 20th, 2017, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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With all the noise i ve heard from the alternator i doubt it was the regulator.I kept an eye un the voltage(obd2 bleutooh connected) and it stayed all day at 14,6v. Once the alternator is out ,i 'll do a few test with it.


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post #10 of 13 Old Mar 20th, 2017, 08:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by otomodo View Post
With all the noise i ve heard from the alternator i doubt it was the regulator.I kept an eye un the voltage(obd2 bleutooh connected) and it stayed all day at 14,6v. Once the alternator is out ,i 'll do a few test with it.
Sorry, didn't mean to suggest that it was only the regulator. On the X trail, the regulator is in the alternator and not really serviceable. An internal battery short can fry it. In that case, if you just replace the battery, the bad regulator can overcharge your new battery and fry it as well. Or the regulator just dies on its own and consistently undercharges your battery, leaving you running on an increasingly run down battery until you get stranded. The battery may still be good.

It may be one or the other or both. Eliminating the battery from diagnostic consideration and testing the alternator alone is a good thing, but unhooking the battery while your car is running is not a risk-free way of doing it.

Is your alternator still making noise? There's not much to an alternator in terms of moving parts beyond the pulley, bearings and shaft. Hard to think that it would put out a steady 14.6 if any of them were toast. Maybe you have a slipping belt?
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post #11 of 13 Old Mar 21st, 2017, 05:21 AM Thread Starter
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As i said above, the battery had about 1mm of melted snow on top. That was probably what caused the short towards the alternator.
I did not put a new battery in it, i had a civic parked outside the whole winter and the 6 years old battery didn't survived. Since i needed a boost, i was not comfortable doing it with my ct200h, so i had buy a new one for the honda and boost the exxy.

You can still hear a buzz coming out of it but not as loud.

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post #12 of 13 Old Mar 21st, 2017, 05:32 AM
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Guess you must have been in a spot with lots of blowing snow. Glad you guys got the full brunt of the storm and not us. We got 15 cms and with the sun of the past few days, its been melting fast.
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post #13 of 13 Old Mar 21st, 2017, 11:40 AM Thread Starter
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Pretty much in this position
The wind blowing from the backyard

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