To prevent damage to the alternator and regulator, the following precautionary measures must be taken when working with the electrical system.
- Never reverse battery connections.
- Booster batteries for starting must be connected properly. Make sure that the positive cable of the booster battery is connected to the positive terminal of the battery that is getting the boost. This applies to both negative and ground cables.
- Disconnect the battery cables before using a fast charger; the charger has a tendency to force current through the diodes in the opposite direction for which they are designed. This burns out the diodes.
- Never use a fast charger as a booster for starting the vehicle.
- Never disconnect the voltage regulator while the engine is running.
- Do not ground the alternator output terminal.
- Do not operate the alternator on an open circuit with the field energized.
- Do not attempt to polarize an alternator.
REMOVAL & INSTALLATION
- Disconnect the negative battery terminal.
- Disconnect the two lead wires and connector from the alternator.
Depending on the year and model vehicle you are working on, it may be easier to access the lead wires, etc. from either above or below the vehicle.
- Loosen the drive belt adjusting bolt and remove the belt.
- Unscrew the alternator attaching bolts and remove the alternator from the vehicle.
- Mount the alternator to the engine and partially tighten the attaching bolts.
- Reconnect the lead wires and connector to the alternator.
- Install the alternator drive belt.
- Adjust the alternator belt correctly and completely tighten the mounting bolts.
- Connect the battery cable. Start the engine and check for proper operation.
The alternator belt tension is quite critical. A belt that is too tight may cause alternator bearing failure; one that is too loose will cause a gradual battery discharge.