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How to Rebuild an Alternator

Rebuilding an alternator is a fairly simple procedure, which anyone with basic


automotive knowledge can accomplish. Although the construction of some brands will
vary slightly, the basic anatomy of an alternator consists of the same components.
Follow these steps as you learn how to rebuild an alternator.

Steps
1.

1
Disconnect the battery leads.
2.

2
Remove the air cleaner for easier to access the alternator.
3.
3
Mark the placement of the electrical leads before removing them.
4.
4
Disconnect the electrical leads.
5.
5
Remove the vehicle's serpentine belt.
6.
6
Remove the mounting bolts and familiarize yourself with their placement.
7.
7
Pull the alternator out.
8.
8
Remove the plastic cover from the back of the unit by unscrewing it.
9.
9
Inspect the bearing. If it does not seem snug, or makes noise when it spins, it will have
to be replaced.
10.
10
Replace the bearing, if necessary, before moving on.
11.
11
Undo the screw which holds the resistors in place.
12.
12
Pay careful attention to the placement of each wire before disconnecting any.
13.
13
Replace the rectifier by prying out the soldered leads and then undo the
mounting screws.
14.
14
Pull the rectifier out.
15.
15
Install the new rectifier by replacing the mounting screws. Solder the lead wires to
reconnect them.
16.
16
Reinstall the screw which separates the rectifier from the brush assembly.
17.
17
Replace the brushes by first undoing the screws which hold each brush
assembly in place. Remove the brushes from their channels.
18.
18
Clean the area of the armature shaft that the brushes contact.
19.
19
Assure that the spring for each new brush is directly at the back, pushing into the
brush slot. Install the replacement brushes.
20.
20
Remove the voltage regulator by first removing the screw from the bottom brush
assembly. Remove the screw that holds the lead into the grounding screw.
21.
21
Install the replacement voltage regulator by replacing the screws mentioned in
the previous step.
22.
22
Use an ohmmeter to assure that the diodes are receiving the proper current.
23.
23
Replace the plastic cover as well as both of the resistors.
24.
24
Put the alternator back in the vehicle.
25.
25
Reconnect the electrical leads assuring that you're installing them properly.
26.
26
Replace the serpentine belt.
27.
27
Reinstall the air cleaner and verify that the belt tension and mounting bolts are
right.
28.
28
Inspect the heat shield at the back of the alternator to verify that it is properly
installed.
29.
29
Reinstall the battery leads.