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Old 06-10-2003, 08:52 AM   #1
dancingator
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Default alternator going

My alternator has started whining. I checked it with a stethoscope. It still has plenty of ampage though. My questions are:

1. The Chilton says to use a certain thin wrench to hold the nut next to the battery terminal connection, it also discusses the B+ terminal: How do you guys deal with this situation? I don't have such a wrench.

2. Generally how long is left in it if its making noise.

3. It looks easy (right or wrong)?

Thanks

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Old 06-10-2003, 09:20 AM   #2
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If you're willing to consider aftermarket, a lot of people on this board have had good luck with Duralast Gold alternators from Autozone. They come with a lifetime warranty, which understandably GM alternators don't.

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Old 06-10-2003, 11:22 AM   #3
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I replaced mine, it's easy... actually, I'm doing two more saturn alternators tonight... I used Bosch remanufactured OEM units (reman by Bosch...) Mine whined the whole winter, and only went in the mid spring... so 3-4 months mine took to die totally. (results may vary )

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Old 06-10-2003, 12:15 PM   #4
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That's good to know. I don't need to rush. I read another post that said to use a Tappet Wrench for the battery terminal connection to the alternator. This requires a purchase by me, any ideas for that part?

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Old 06-10-2003, 02:19 PM   #5
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if it's whistling then the countdown has started. the last time mine made the death whistle it barely had enough in it to get me to the saturn retailer, where it died in the service bay. they had to push it around to get it to the lift so they could replace it. hopefully you have a manual transaxle so it doesn't need the battery to shift gears.

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Old 06-11-2003, 08:49 AM   #6
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Did the alt. last night. $130 DuraGold at Autozone. I am sure my old alt. will be rebuilt and make someone happy. The old one sure had a squeal even after I sprayed and lubed it good. About 2-2.5 hrs total. No surprises. I didn't use a tappet wrench but I was very careful not to turn the shaft or overtighten the battery terminal nut. 89 inch-lbs is not much torque.

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Old 06-11-2003, 04:02 PM   #7
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Okay, if I buy one of those remanufactured or aftermarket alternators, would Saturn install it for me, or would I have to go to a shop? It looks like a reasonable difficult job, and I'm not good with.......well, working on my car. It took me two and a half hours to do the serpentine belt, idler pulley, and upper motor mount. How much do you think it would cost to have someone do it?

I'm pretty sure mine's dying. It whines more when I have lights on, and today I had the air on and it was audible over my music, so I'm very sure it's the alternator and not something else.

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Old 06-11-2003, 04:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Twin_Cam
Okay, if I buy one of those remanufactured or aftermarket alternators, would Saturn install it for me, or would I have to go to a shop? It looks like a reasonable difficult job, and I'm not good with.......well, working on my car. It took me two and a half hours to do the serpentine belt, idler pulley, and upper motor mount. How much do you think it would cost to have someone do it?
I'd recomend you just take it to an independant garage that will install one with a lifetime parts warranty.

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Old 06-11-2003, 06:40 PM   #9
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My quote was for $280. I am betting 2hs of labor. With your newly found background you should do it. The hardest part was taking the tire off. You know how to deal with the belt now - so thats good. The alt was held on by two bolts. Just be careful when tightening the battery terminal nut. And that is all to it. My Chilton manual described it exactly. I don't know about you but I don't make $80 an hour.... So it may be worth the hastle.

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Old 06-11-2003, 10:52 PM   #10
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Mitchell flat rate time to replace the alternator is 1.1 hour.

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