Alternator issue - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 01-02-2011, 01:38 PM
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Alternator issue? Help please!

I just got this truck a few weeks back and towed my camper with it for the first time last week. On the way home, at a stop, I noticed the battery light was on, but the gauge read normal. As I got the rpms up over 1500 or soi, the light went out, gauge remained constant the entire time. This continued until I got home and parked.
Went out today to move the trailer and unhook and still the same thing, so I got out the battery tester and a voltmeter to do some trouble shooting. Here are my results:
Engine off -11.9v at battery and big alt terminal
Engine running- 11.8v at battery and main alt terminal at idle with battery light on and absolutely no change as rpms are raised except the battery light goes out between 1200 and 1500rpm

I am guessing the voltage reg is bad?
I hate to spend $200+ on a parts house reman unit if it is just the regulator and it apparently can be replaced for under $50. Which route should I go? SHould I take it to the local starter shop and have them rebuild it with instructions to just replace the voltage reg? Should I order the part and replace it myself? If the latter, where to order from? I have found several listings and it seems it would be easiest to call them to try and get the correct regulator.
Should I just pony up the $$ and get a reman unit from NAPA?
Should I just pull the alt out and test it on a test bench before doing anything?

I only use this truck for towing, so it being down for a while is not a problem.
Any help is appreciated!

Last edited by Edman87k5; 01-02-2011 at 01:49 PM.
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Old 01-02-2011, 04:12 PM
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take it to good rebuild shop they will check it and save you money if that is what it is.
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Old 01-02-2011, 07:36 PM
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Put an alt. and new batteries. And call it good.
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Old 01-03-2011, 09:54 AM
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I had the same problem. Light would come on and off at different times. If I revved it up it would usually turn off. I had an alternator shop check out my alternator and they said it was good. Reinstalled it and it was still doing the same thing. Did some snooping around and the single wire that clips onto the alternator was loose. It would loose connection, and trip the battery light on the dash, but the battery gauge would never change. When I would revv it up, the vibration would cause it to make another connection, and the light would go off.... When I would check voltage, pressing on the clip to get a reading would cause it to make a connection and would origionally tell me everything was good....

I went to the stealership to get a new clip and pigtail as none of the auto sores carried a replica, and they wanted 50 bucks for it! NO FRIGGIN WAY. So i put a female spade connector on the existing wire and pushed it on the alternator, light hasnt come on since....


Another buddy of mine had a similar problem and it turned out to be his belt tensioner going bad. I know, doesnt sound like it could be in any way related, and I cant remember all the details, but thats what it turned out to be....

Just a couple other things you can check....

Last edited by azbroncbuster; 01-03-2011 at 10:00 AM.
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:28 AM
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OK, I took the alt off and had it tested at autozone, shows bad and output listed at 11.3v. I was showing 11.8v when I put a meter on it. So, I am guessing the alt is bad. I did check the wires and all seems to be good.
I am going to take it to NAPA and if they say bad also, buy another one.
As for pricing, NAPA is 169 reman with 3 yr warranty, autozone is 189 new with lifetime, 169 reman gold with lifetime, 139 reman regular with 1 yr. Called the ford dealership to see what a new one would run me, they cannot get a new alt, on,y reman and it was 235 with 1 yr warranty.
I tend to think a reman ford unit would still be better than a new autozone one?
Also tend to trust napa reman stuff more than the others even though I imagine the same factory in mexico does them all.
BTW, this factory unit is 11 years old and has 210k miles on it! Not a bad life.
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:32 AM
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Send a message via AIM to Raul@Stealth Automotive
this may be slightly more than you want to spend but here is a aftermarket unit that is way better than the stock OEM unit: 99-'07 Ford F250350/450 & Excursion Powerstroke TAD 190 Amp OEM series alternator

i had this one on my excursion and loved it

-Raul
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:49 AM
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Ive heard of people getting the kits to rebuild them themselves and upping the voltage to put out higher volts in the process for way less than paying someone to do it. Ive heard it isnt too hard, but its your choice on your level of mechanical expertise.

Look for alternator rebuild shops in your area, or even automotive electrical shops. Thats what I did when I needed a new one. I think it was just over 100 bucks to have them rebuild it. Then your supporting your local economy as well. Just another idea.
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Old 01-03-2011, 01:19 PM
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a new autozone should be just as good as a reman motorcraft.i would buy the new one.
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:12 PM
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Ok, got the reman napa and put it in, all is good so far.
I live in a small town and napa is the only thing local, so that did weigh on my decision.
My mechanical ability goes well beyond building an alt, but I have no desire to up the output. I did find a couple rebuild kits that were in the $50 or so range that had both bearings, vot reg and rectifier, also found some alts reman for $100.
The napa unit is the easy way and at the same time supports a local business that I like the owners of and if I have a problem, I know it will be taken care of easily.
My logic won out over my cheapness this time.
Thanks for the input from everyone.
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