three dead alternators

m3x1c0

Bad luck Buick
Hey all. The car started acting up this weekend. TPS voltage was higher than I remember setting it to. Reset it to .44 and the car ran ok. Yesterday the tps is all over the place and the car would stumble and run super rich and die out at stoplights. Checked the battery voltage and it started showing 11's. Took the alternator and battery to get tested and left with a new alternator. This is my 3rd duralast alternator this year. Replaced the first one that I bought 2 weeks ago when it crapped out. Just tossed this last one in and it appears to be DOA. Volts staying at 11 and steadily dropped until the car wont even idle. Checked all my connections and everything is just as it left Steves. Car has the Caspers field fix. Good solid and redundant grounds. Is there anything I could be doing wrong to kill these things or is it just time I found a better brand alternator?
 

m3x1c0

Bad luck Buick
Tested with a voltmeter as well. I was seeing 11's the same thing on both the SM and voltmeter. When it first started acting up I tested at the battery with the VM and got 13.6 idling and 12 with engine off. Both numbers started tapering off until both were reading 11's and now 10's. Battery is draining. Not sure how to test for drop.
 

turbo39151

anycoloraslongasitsblack
I went through 3 bad alternators back to back when I had to swap mine. I swapped to a 140amp unit from a mid 90's ss impala. Direct swap.
When I test my alt I'm looking for 13-14v. Battery at 12v.

I do not recall the store I purchased from but they got to know me pretty well.

btw, did you keep your original 120amp alt? You can have them rebuilt (keep on the shelf for originality)
 

m3x1c0

Bad luck Buick
I went through 3 bad alternators back to back when I had to swap mine. I swapped to a 140amp unit from a mid 90's ss impala. Direct swap.
When I test my alt I'm looking for 13-14v. Battery at 12v.

I do not recall the store I purchased from but they got to know me pretty well.

btw, did you keep your original 120amp alt? You can have them rebuilt (keep on the shelf for originality)
Yep still have it. I plan to rebuild it one day. So the plug on the side is in the same location? What brand?
 

turbo39151

anycoloraslongasitsblack
I do not recall.
It was a direct plug and play (I thought the upgrade was necessary- not true according to R.C.- nevertheless, I've not had any issues since)

If you search you'll find my post. It's older. 2005ish? I posted model numbers and pricing IIRC.
 

m3x1c0

Bad luck Buick
I do not recall.
It was a direct plug and play (I thought the upgrade was necessary- not true according to R.C.- nevertheless, I've not had any issues since)

If you search you'll find my post. It's older. 2005ish? I posted model numbers and pricing IIRC.
think I found it. Would this cause issues since I also have the voltage booster in place?
 

bison

Moderator
Staff member
I'd verify the alternator is being excited. With the field fix you won't know for sure. Because no light in dash. If there's an intermittent connection the alternator will randomly charge or not charge


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TurboDave

RIP DAVE
Staff member
TurboBuick.Com Supporter!
What brand of volt booster? Trash it! You don't need it anyway. I went through three dead alternators many years back before I figured out that is was my Red Armstrong volt booster that was killing them. Got rid of it and haven't had an alternator failure since (over 15 years ago).
 

whitehot1

Well-Known Member
Advance auto parts alternators work good and come with a lifetime warranty.

I have them on my TR and my runabout and never a problem with them.

Like mentioned though it sounds more of an exciting issue than the alternators themselves.

Yep,volt booster not needed with a good alternator and charging system.
 

m3x1c0

Bad luck Buick
I performed 2 more tests before I took the alt back. One I tested for a drop by putting the positive side of my voltage meter to the neg terminal of the battery and the ground lead to the alternator casing. Found no voltage so that is good. Then I back probed the connector on the alternator and saw almost the same voltage from the battery (which is currently 11.7ish) with the key ON. So I believe that is the exciter wire and is working properly.

Took the alt back to autozone and it tested bad. Got my money back and ordered one from o'reilleys.

I believe I mistook the caspers field fix for the voltage booster. This is what I have connected to the alternator: http://www.casperselectronics.com/store2/product_info.php?products_id=618.
 

TT/Ameasap

The White Blur
If you had a low voltage problem and added a volt booster, better fix the cause of the problem first before removing the VB. I would rather have an alternator go out than an engine.
I have had my Caspers VB on for around 3 years now and its with a Duralast from Autozone. No problems yet and I am WOT anywhere I go. Even have the little motorcycle battery PC680.
 

Steve V

Steve V's Automotive 757 560 2782
What a pain in the ass, wish I was closer we would swap parts until it was fixed....
 

Dennis Kirban

Well-Known Member
kirban two cents worth we offer brand new 120 and 200 amp alternators with warranty 100% correct looking. One key thing is the pulley on the correct ones is difficult to find today and may not be on many of the various rebuilts today. I had to have that pulley made as that is a key part to making it charge properly. Any alternator can fail even with new parts. Fact of life....my source tests each one. Any warranty issues we stand behind them.

Again our alternators are unique on the 1986-1987 Turbo Regals. We sel a lot of them. My source has been in the alternator business for over 25 years. Entire unit is 100% brand new not rebuilt.

denniskirban@yahoo.com
 

TurboBuRick

Moderator
Staff member
The fuel pumps love the volt booster but they beat up the alternators. I find it hard to believe you are getting multiple bad alternators. More than likely you have a bad connection.
 
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