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$425 for rebuilt alternator install?

Just paid $425 for a diagnostic and installation of a rebuilt alternator. Is this high? 1994 Dodge Caravan, Alternator right up top left of engine.


Alternator: $195
Check electrical: $50
Labor $150
Supplies: $21

Ehh…prices vary widely from area to area and even within one city from one place to another. Around here in the Seattle area:

Reman Alternator $187.20
Battery charge and complete charging/starting system diagnosis $45.00
Labor to replace alternator (using the labor guide) at $90/hr $135.00
Shop supplies at 3% of total bill $11.02

You’re not far off.

In my area that cost breakdown would be about right too.
Often a repair cost sounds high, but when broken down turns out to be reasonable. This is one of those cases.

Paid around the same in Southern CA 2 years ago for a 2000 Caravan with the 3.3 engine. Probably the same engine you got just a bit more difficult to get to the alternator.

I suggest to keep an eye on your serpentine belt and tensioner. The units on these engines are not that strong and I would have asked for a new belt (no addition labor just ~$50 in parts) to be installed at the same time.

I suppose you could have saved some money by asking just for the installation, no testing. But I think that would be false economy, especially when installing a rebuilt alternator. They sometimes don’t work right out of the box. I think you got good value for your $425.

No this is not high. Mechanics charge about 80 bucks per hour plus mark-up on parts plus taxes. The thing to shop around for on this item is warranty. There are new alternators available (not remanufactured) for about the same price now with lifetime parts and labor warranty.


If I was buying a new alternator, I’d want to make sure it was american, versus chinese

No offense intended to anybody

I have nothing against Chinese parts . . . and people . . . as long as they’re high quality

one of those jobs that you can save money on by doing it yourself. takes few tools, and you don t need a lot of experience. . you can get a good repair manual for about 30 bucks.

@db4690 Our first obligation is to provide the customer with the best value for the money, not to be biased by where the product is made. TYC brand all-new starters and alternators are a great value in terms of cost, warranty and dependability. I have not purchased a reman rotating electrical in years. I am fortunate to have a warehouse level distributor of these products only 10 minutes from my shop.


In my opinion, putting in a cheap part which won’t last long, is not good value for the money

The only scenario where I would find that to be okay is if the customer clearly said they just wanted to get the car ready for sale next week

@db4690 TYC brand new starters and alternators are not cheap parts, just the opposite. With a lifetime warranty including labor at the full billed rate on the invoice, they are far superior products to all remans in our marketplace. Our shop does 2.5 mil per year, not counting towing or smog test so we would have known if the products were substandard after several years.


I’m not slamming any particular brand . . . I don’t even seem to recall throwing a name out there

I’m slamming cheap junky parts which fail quickly . . . which seem to quite often be foreign made or remanned

@db4690 I sure can agree with that! Most times when I see made in China or Taiwan or Malaysia all I can do is cringe and shake my head. Time has taught me there are often exceptions to most generalities.



There was a time where I thought all Chinese made tools were garbage, even if the parent company was american

Now even many of the professional level tools are made in China, and the quality is just fine

Heck, a lot of us . . . myself included . . . weren’t “made in USA” and we seem to be okay


Auto parts suppliers have not made it any easier on us by carrying multiple quality lines, now you have to chose the good one, the really good one or the really really good one. Argh.


Now let’s translate that into language we can understand . . .

High quality


I paid just under $400 a few years ago for a Bosch remanufactured alternator for a Nissan Sentra. That shop’s rate is $92 per hour. Bosch has a road “hazard warranty” and a long regular warranty.

For us non mechanics what is TYC? Is that a Chinese brand? I usually don’t have much choice of brand-Just what NAPA, the dealer, etc. sells.

TYC is a brand of all-new starters and alternators. They sell them direct through “The Radiator Store” and at NAPA as “NAPA NEW” as well as


TYC is distributed in the USA by TYC/Genera.

The parts are manufactured in Taiwan, China, Thailand, and Lithuania.