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WhiteSTguy
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5,390 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Well my alternator just died. Thought it was the battery that I just replaced 2 weeks ago but the guy from Autozone says the battery was good and there was a problem with the alternator. Battery died just 1 month after the 2 year warranty but the AZ guy prorated it for me so I just ended up paying $25 for a new battery. I just charged the battery and it runs just fine until I disconnect then it dies instantly.

Glad I didn't get stranded while in DC as I just got back last week [:)]. The engine did die on my while braking at the turnpike gate but it started back up just fine while on my way back [???:)]

I just bought another alternator so now I'm waiting for that to come in the mail. Wish it would hurry up already! LOL. My life sucks.
 

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The Librarian
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13,116 Posts
Make sure you closely check that 3 wire connector going into the alternator when you install the new one.

Mine looked OK, but I was only getting intermittent signal through the gray wire.
 

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WhiteSTguy
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5,390 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Make sure you closely check that 3 wire connector going into the alternator when you install the new one.

Mine looked OK, but I was only getting intermittent signal through the gray wire.
Thanks for the suggestion. I haven't even searched yet for a tut on how to remove it. Guess I should do that now while I'm waiting so I know what I'm doing lol.

I am beginning to wonder if my dieing alternator was the culprit to my previous battery's short life span. I got 4 years out of my stock battery.
 

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The Librarian
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13,116 Posts
^^^I'm wondering that myself.
Don't know if you've seen my write up or not:
http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=240870

BTW:
IMHO, (and several others) I don't thinks it's a good idea to disconnect the positive cable when running on these newer cars that control the alternator directly from the ECU.
That just sends a huge "jolt" through the system and I wouldn't be surprised if on occasion you end up killing the ECU.

I did do that on mine a couple times, but after seeing the voltage spikes and the mega light show on the dash warning lights,
I decided not to pursue that "test" any further.

If you'd like to PM me your email addy, I'll gladly send you the diagnostic PDFs that I got from BC_ZX3.
 

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WhiteSTguy
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5,390 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Got the alternator today but after reading another post, it maybe just the connector that's the problem.

On a side note, I have had a problem with the light in my instrument cluster where it will flicker or not work at all. Could this be related to my alternator/battery?

I do remember that a dying battery would cause the instrument cluster to be wonky(like when my first battery died) at times but would that cause the light to flicker or not work?
 

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Registered
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Well my alternator just died. Thought it was the battery that I just replaced 2 weeks ago but the guy from Autozone says the battery was good and there was a problem with the alternator. Battery died just 1 month after the 2 year warranty but the AZ guy prorated it for me so I just ended up paying $25 for a new battery. I just charged the battery and it runs just fine until I disconnect then it dies instantly.

Glad I didn't get stranded while in DC as I just got back last week [:)]. The engine did die on my while braking at the turnpike gate but it started back up just fine while on my way back [???:)]

I just bought another alternator so now I'm waiting for that to come in the mail. Wish it would hurry up already! LOL. My life sucks.
I have been through 5 alternators in the past 5 years and have finally solved the problem. Problem: alternators failing every year.

I replaced the original factory crappy cable assembly with a new crappy cable assembly but positive battery terminal still gets hot.

So.....

Issue: #1: Bad engine ground for alternator. Bad chassis ground for battery.
Solution: rescrape the grounds and tighten. Add an extra ground wire between engine and chassis. Use silicon grease to prevent corrosion/oxidation of iron.
Add another extra ground wire between negative battery terminal and chassis.

Issue #2. Undersized and defective design of positive RED alternator battery cable.
Solution: Add a SECOND red cable directly between alternator and the positive battery terminal.

After adding the RED extra postive cable today on my 2000 ZX3, idle went up from 600rpm to 1100rpm.
Alternator not having to work as hard to push voltage / current through the undersized but NEW red lead of crappy cable because
I added a large 6' red cable in parrallel to it. (The factory cable tries to use their small red cable run to charge the battery with 140Amps and run the starter.
There positive cable is two pieced that is crimped through a resistive double crimped connector on the starter that gets corroded and resistive)

Also, the battery terminals are not HOT any more like before.

Lesson:Check engine ground for alternator and battery. And, enhance postitive current carrying capacity by running another positive cable between alternator and battery.
 
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