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Thread: What can kill an alternator? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
09-10-2012 12:52 PM
jersey girl Thanks for all the great responses!
09-08-2012 06:57 PM
VEGAS A Cap will only hurt if its not installed correctly. a Cap will not Discharge or use much energy it allways connected to a Battery, a BatCap is best but very pricey.

If your system Discharges the Cap and recharges it on startup the surge can hurt the system. The CAP is on Float when not in use and connected to battery, when used in trunk with Amp it will let the amps surge and draw power from battery more smooth. This Will still hurt the alternator is your drawing more power then your system will make.

I strongly suggest what I did and add a larger alternator, a G6 large case 200 amp can hold my 1800watt kenwood sub and 750 watt kenwood powering 4 6x8s and carputer..

with AC and Headlights.
09-08-2012 06:47 PM
whynotthinkwhynot How about "Lifetime Warranty" alternators. I always advise people to go with a local rebuilder. It's more of a PITA because for people with one car you have to bum a ride, and you might need a ride to work, but the alternator rebuild you get will last longer and be cheaper. A more expensive, but work approved method might be to purchase a new alternator, then have your old one rebuilt and put it in a box somewhere for next time. Hopefully your car won't be crashed before you need an alternator. It's not as cost effective either.
09-08-2012 07:57 AM
05focusST91 Running the car at high rpm constantly can do it too, but usually its a cause from what they^ said, weak batteries, bad cables, even the fuse on the alternator could go bad
09-08-2012 07:04 AM
Now534 I've had my stereo in my car for 2 years now. (Rockford T1500.1bd wired to 1 ohm which is about 1500-1800rms depending on the song) I never run a cap and never will and my alternator is just fine and i drive with my lights on during the day sometimes (mostly when cloudy should be a law in every state especially when raining). My alternator is constantly running and it has never failed. Hell the Alt in my truck lasted damn near 20 years before it finally gave way last year and it had pretty good sized stereo in it and multiple battery draining instances.

If anything Caps are worse for your alternator than adding another battery. Constantly charging and discharging is not good for your alternator at all. Plus a battery is cheaper than a cap and can have more reserve.
09-07-2012 11:31 PM
SilverST05 Bad batteries. Bad connections, corroded cables. And everything else everyone has said.
09-07-2012 05:04 PM
mikeeshaq See the link:

http://www.troubleshooters.com/dont_...ct_battery.htm
09-07-2012 02:06 PM
swansong Forgetting to cover it when washing the engine bay... ...not that I'd know.
09-07-2012 01:59 PM
VEGAS Car Stereo Amps with small battery and no Cap can kill it...
Heat kills it, constant charging, surges and bad wires.
09-07-2012 01:51 PM
cbdallas Anything that causes them to work hard, especially in hot weather, can kill them. This is why I don't really like DRLs. It's also a good idea to do a voltage test on your battery occasionally, because if it's not taking a full charge, the regulator never shuts off and the alternator charges the entire time the engine is running.

Some people drive around all day with their headlights on, not giving a thought to where that energy is coming from. I only use my headlights at night, I don't do major stereo upgrades, and I don't do anything that causes any significant battery drain when the car isn't running. I've also never had to replace an alternator.
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