Another explanation for bad alternators



On the Saturday, 9/1 show, Tom and Ray the fellow from New York with Toyota who went through four bad alternators that it has to be bad alternators; that the car can’t be responsible for it.

Maybe not. I had an 89 Ford Escort in the mid-90s when I was in college and I went through a series of alternators until we realized that the PLUGS that connect to the alternator were cracked. Eventually water would work its way in there and create havoc.

So this guy should check the electrical connections to the alternator too.


This same thing happened to me on an 88 K5 Blazer; electrical plug cracked and the connections corroded. I caught it before anything got fried because the truck had a volt meter and it was pegged. I disconnected the alternator and drove home on the battery. All it took was a new connector to fix it.


I went through a few alternators with my 85 Buick Skyhawk until a mechanic found that it was a faulty wire that would heat up and cause the alternator to fail. Replacing the wire fixed the problem and it was the last alternator that I had to buy for that car.


I wouldn’t dare argue with that. Finally!


I also had a connector problem, but mine was a little different. I had an 89 Bronco II that went through 4 alternators (some under warrantee, all with new connectors as per instructions) done at a professional shop until the fifth one was done by me because I was caught out of town at my brother in laws house on a Sunday. When I went to a parts store to purchase my alternator, the (very experienced) counter person asked me do I want the Lifetime Warrantee, at which point I laughed and said yes and you will regret it. When I told him my bad experience he opened the box and pointed out the Dielectric Grease, and said if I used it on the connector and checked it periodically I would never again have a problem.

He was right. No problems since. It made sense too because I remember one instance where the connector melted and started on fire when it blew. And it was a new connector.

Dielectric grease (not sure if that is spelled right). That solved my problem.