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Alternator breakdown due to gasket failure

My 2007 hyundai veracruz broke down 2 days ago–the 2 month old battery was dead due to the alternator failure. The shop diagnosed the origin of the problem as a leak at the valve cover gasket, which ruined the alternator, and thus disabled the battery. My car has approx. 70,000 miles on it. Should this be covered under their warranty?

Have you asked your dealer this question? It may or may not be covered.

yes, it’s at the dealer now. It just seems to be an obscurity in the warranty manual, and in the industry at-large. He said he thought it would be covered, but we’ve heard antidotally that it can be manipulated different ways depending on the dealer.

It would have been better if the Dealer had been allowed to make the determination that the battery was damaged by the alternator and the alternator was damaged by the oil leak (that must have been on heck of an oil leak).

“we’ve heard antidotally that it can be manipulated different ways”

Well, if you find an antidote for that problem, please keep us posted.

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That would have had to be one hell of a valve cover gasket leak…I am not really buying this failure description…I have had alternators submerged entirely in water and they didnt fail… You would have had to dump more than a full quart of oin in that thing to cause trouble. I find this descrip highly suspect. I would also think a gasket leak of this magnitude would have been spotted by you or your dealer and they should have addressed it then…if they didnt then why? Why wouldnt they cover it at that point as well.

I have pretty much given up on pointing out discrepencies in the stories people present to us. At one time I found it benefical to exercise my “BS meter” but after hearing so much here, it done got broke.Or to but it another way “My give a d*** is busted”.

I still like it when I find (or know already) something that helps someone out, but the BS is discouraging. Things like not being able to convince the public there is a difference between “my car won’t crank” and “my car won’t start” is discouraging.

I’m sure by now the OP has no clue what we find wrong with that sentence, but I play the '‘make ‘em think about it for a while’’ ploy myself.

Should we tell them that it’s not “antidotally” for that usage ,
but actually…

Ask the shop how oil can damage an alternator.
There are tens of thousands of motorcycles sold each year that have their alternator stators spinning in oil, constantly. Oil will not kill an alternator.

Alternators are also constantly exposed to the environment.
Oil, road grime, rain water, humidity. None of that kills them.

Now, it is entirely possible that your alternator failed all on its own, taking the battery out when you continued to drive with the Battery light lit up on your dashboard for quite a long time, and at the same time, your engine had an oil leak.

But, the oil leak has nothing to do with the alternator failure.

At 70k miles, you were going to need to pay for these repairs out of pocket anyway, unless you had bought an extended warranty for your car.


I think a failing battery is more plausible as an alternator killer rather than what I consider a hokum story about oil being the cause of the failure.
You’re saying the alternator killed the battery. Maybe it was the other way around.

If oil will kill an alternator then Harley Davidson alternators should be dropping like flies because those alternators (bare and with no housing) run inside a primary chaincase that has oil in it.

I doubt very seriously any wording in the manual about whether an alternator is covered under warranty is given in a hazy manner.
Much is made of the 10 year/100k miles warranty but this only applies to selected powertrain components. Everything else is in 3 years/36k miles category and maybe the OP is thinking that 10/100 covers everything.

Oops-- sorry . . . DO know the difference–ANECdotally is what I meant! Anyway . . . thanks for the input everyone. We did have the vehicle towed to the dealer, and they assessed the situation exactly as was first diagnosed-- AND they covered everything! Hyundai rocks the 100k warranty!

It’s funny reading these comments knowing what we know now, the Veracruz was recalled for exactly this issue: valve cover gasket leaks oil which drips onto the alternator and ruins it. Glad it was fixed for you.

The database of comments here that has built up over the years has become pretty useful. I notice a lot of questions about car repairs posed to google now wind up here.