Really weird electrical problem - TCCoA Forums
 1Likes
  • 1 Post By RalphP
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 01:15 PM Thread Starter
3rd Gear Poster
 
30thAnniversaryCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Austin, Texas
Posts: 176
Really weird electrical problem

Car started fine this AM and when I went to lunch. On drive to lunch, tach started cutting out intermittently, A/C cut in and out and fan ran really slow regardless of fan speed setting when it did cut on, and red electrical warning light came on. Power windows also barely go up or down. Engine barely turned over when I started it after lunch, and now tach is dead and A/C runs really slow only if I rev up engine speed. HELP, please! (It's WAY too hot here in Texas for this to happen)
30thAnniversaryCat is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 03:25 PM
No, Mr. Lemmywinks, No!!!

Moderator
 
Grog6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Harriman, TN
Age: 56
Posts: 10,035
Garage
Dead alternator, and the battery is now dead.

I did this last month, lol.

Red '96 Cougar XR-7 240k mi. '02 4R70W, PST DS : '03 PI engine, 04 maf, 24lb injectors, 2.5" exhaust, '02 4r70w + Jmod, DirtyD0g TC + cooler + 3/8" lines, 255 walbro fp. Alpine system.
Black '96 Cougar XR-7 (Lazarus) 210k mi PI Intake, '02 4R70W, Jmod, PST DS, GrogTune, Konis, Mark LCA+Poly, racecougar Custom Engine Chain, and JL and racecougar Bracing.
Black '97 Tbird Limited Edition, '02 4R70W, 255 walbro, PST DS, PBR Brakes&SS lines, Toicko Blues & Springs, GrogTune.


"War Is Peace. Freedom Is Slavery. Ignorance Is Strength." - George Orwell.
Truth Isn't Truth. - Rudy Giuliani, 2018 Award winner, “Most Outrageous Diversion” by MSNBC for this quote
Grog6 is offline  
post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
3rd Gear Poster
 
30thAnniversaryCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Austin, Texas
Posts: 176
Did you replace battery first and then alternator?
30thAnniversaryCat is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 03:44 PM
6th Gear Poster
 
Thunderstruck95's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: S.W. Michigan
Posts: 509
Garage
You can probably trickle charge the battery back to life.

1995 T-Bird.
PI 4.6. Bullitt intake. Stage 2 MHS cams. Kooks Headers. 4,200 ATF Speed converter. BCA Transmission. 4:10s. Tune by Supercoupes Unlimited. 245 RWHP.
3,700 lbs at half tank. Goal- 3,400 lbs
Best of 13.85 at 96 mph. Goal- 11's NA

1997 Lincoln Mark VIII LSC- stock

1997 Lincoln Mark VIII FX2 Sand Dune Machine- R.I.P.
Thunderstruck95 is offline  
post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 07:39 PM
No, Mr. Lemmywinks, No!!!

Moderator
 
Grog6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Harriman, TN
Age: 56
Posts: 10,035
Garage
I meant dead as in "Out of juice"; but if you leave it that way for a couple of days it will be bad too.

Charge tha battery, and see if it runs fine.

Red '96 Cougar XR-7 240k mi. '02 4R70W, PST DS : '03 PI engine, 04 maf, 24lb injectors, 2.5" exhaust, '02 4r70w + Jmod, DirtyD0g TC + cooler + 3/8" lines, 255 walbro fp. Alpine system.
Black '96 Cougar XR-7 (Lazarus) 210k mi PI Intake, '02 4R70W, Jmod, PST DS, GrogTune, Konis, Mark LCA+Poly, racecougar Custom Engine Chain, and JL and racecougar Bracing.
Black '97 Tbird Limited Edition, '02 4R70W, 255 walbro, PST DS, PBR Brakes&SS lines, Toicko Blues & Springs, GrogTune.


"War Is Peace. Freedom Is Slavery. Ignorance Is Strength." - George Orwell.
Truth Isn't Truth. - Rudy Giuliani, 2018 Award winner, “Most Outrageous Diversion” by MSNBC for this quote
Grog6 is offline  
post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 08:24 PM
4th Gear Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Alexandria, Virginia
Posts: 215
Yup, alternator.

If it was the battery the doors would lock/unlock while you were engaging the starting circuit. At least that's how it is with a 95.
Jim3inVirginia is offline  
post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
3rd Gear Poster
 
30thAnniversaryCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Austin, Texas
Posts: 176
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim3inVirginia View Post
Yup, alternator.

If it was the battery the doors would lock/unlock while you were engaging the starting circuit. At least that's how it is with a 95.
Nothing happens when I turn the key. I put in a new bajttery and (so far) all is well. I guess if it's the alternator the battery won't last long, right? I plan to test the alternator at Advance Auto. The red battery light is still lit even with new battery.
30thAnniversaryCat is offline  
post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 12:19 AM
1st Gear Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 58
Take a Volt Ohm Meter and read the alternator output. If it's wasted you'll have nothing there.
scottjohnston is offline  
post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 06:13 AM
6th Gear Poster
 
Natesriv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Kansas City
Age: 49
Posts: 584
Garage
What about the old "unplug the positive terminal when it's running, if it dies, it's the alternator or charging system" trick?
Natesriv is offline  
post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 11:23 AM
Kind of slapped together
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Bossier City, LA
Age: 63
Posts: 4,838
Quote:
Originally Posted by Natesriv View Post
What about the old "unplug the positive terminal when it's running, if it dies, it's the alternator or charging system" trick?
That's a good way to fry today's alternators ... and ECUs!

Don't.

What you do is load test the alternator while watching the resultant wave form; or take it to a trusted shop that'll do that for you.

RwP
Grog6 likes this.

Fuelly
RalphP is offline  
post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 11:58 AM
6th Gear Poster
 
Natesriv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Kansas City
Age: 49
Posts: 584
Garage
AHH I'd forgotten most auto parts stores will check your charging system for free...
Yeah do that instead!
Natesriv is offline  
post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 12:30 PM
Kind of slapped together
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Bossier City, LA
Age: 63
Posts: 4,838
Quote:
Originally Posted by RalphP View Post
or take it to a trusted shop that'll do that for you.

RwP
Quote:
Originally Posted by Natesriv View Post
AHH I'd forgotten most auto parts stores will check your charging system for free...
Yeah do that instead!
Well, I DID specify "trusted shop"; for me, that lets out most auto parts stores.

RwP

Fuelly
RalphP is offline  
post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 03:37 PM
5th Gear Poster
 
ikutoisahobo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 440
Sounds like a bad or weakening alternator. Usually if you can get the car running, the alternator can keep everything going if the battery is not holding a charge. Now if the battery is ultra-fxxxxd that could cause issues.

But since you say the battery change resolved it, well then it could have just been the battery. But I still feel like that alternator is dying.
ikutoisahobo is offline  
post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-02-2017, 05:43 PM
No, Mr. Lemmywinks, No!!!

Moderator
 
Grog6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Harriman, TN
Age: 56
Posts: 10,035
Garage
Alternators are expensive; you can probably rebuild it, as long as the diode pack is good.

If you go out and feel of the alternator a few hours after driving it, and it's not warm, the diode pack is probably good.

Measure the voltage with a voltmeter, then start the car.

Depending on temperature, it will go up from whatever the battery was, to between 13.8 to 14.8V.

If it doesn't do that, it's bad.

I've used these rebuild kits before; which kit depends on your alternator.

I have a V8 with a 130A alt, and used this kit:
https://www.amazon.com/Victory-Lap-F.../dp/B000CFKSBO

I've used their starter rebuild kits too, with good results.
ymmv.

Red '96 Cougar XR-7 240k mi. '02 4R70W, PST DS : '03 PI engine, 04 maf, 24lb injectors, 2.5" exhaust, '02 4r70w + Jmod, DirtyD0g TC + cooler + 3/8" lines, 255 walbro fp. Alpine system.
Black '96 Cougar XR-7 (Lazarus) 210k mi PI Intake, '02 4R70W, Jmod, PST DS, GrogTune, Konis, Mark LCA+Poly, racecougar Custom Engine Chain, and JL and racecougar Bracing.
Black '97 Tbird Limited Edition, '02 4R70W, 255 walbro, PST DS, PBR Brakes&SS lines, Toicko Blues & Springs, GrogTune.


"War Is Peace. Freedom Is Slavery. Ignorance Is Strength." - George Orwell.
Truth Isn't Truth. - Rudy Giuliani, 2018 Award winner, “Most Outrageous Diversion” by MSNBC for this quote
Grog6 is offline  
post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-03-2017, 01:47 PM
4th Gear Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Alexandria, Virginia
Posts: 215
Thanks for the tip on the alternator repair kit. When I first changed my alternator back in Jan 2012, I held on to the original thinking I should try to rebuild it and keep it on the shelf.

When the replacement alternator failed last year, I brought it to the local test-it-for-free shop, they confirmed that it wasn't generating up to standards. Had already checked rockauto price of $100 and didn't need it that day, so I declined their offer of a rebuilt for $160 plus core deposit and ordered from rockauto.
Jim3inVirginia is offline  
post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 11:18 AM Thread Starter
3rd Gear Poster
 
30thAnniversaryCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Austin, Texas
Posts: 176
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grog6 View Post
Alternators are expensive; you can probably rebuild it, as long as the diode pack is good.

If you go out and feel of the alternator a few hours after driving it, and it's not warm, the diode pack is probably good.

Measure the voltage with a voltmeter, then start the car.

Depending on temperature, it will go up from whatever the battery was, to between 13.8 to 14.8V.

If it doesn't do that, it's bad.

I've used these rebuild kits before; which kit depends on your alternator.

I have a V8 with a 130A alt, and used this kit:
https://www.amazon.com/Victory-Lap-F.../dp/B000CFKSBO

I've used their starter rebuild kits too, with good results.
ymmv.
How difficult is the rebuild? Any special tools needed?
30thAnniversaryCat is offline  
post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 11:37 AM Thread Starter
3rd Gear Poster
 
30thAnniversaryCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Austin, Texas
Posts: 176
The battery was no good so its replaced under warranty. Advance Auto checked the alternator with the new battery in place and said its dead (no output at all) Anyone have experience with new (not reman) Pep Boys alternators? Are they OK or garbage?
30thAnniversaryCat is offline  
post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 01:00 PM
6th Gear Poster
 
Natesriv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Kansas City
Age: 49
Posts: 584
Garage
If done right a rebuilt alternator is just as good as new...new brushes, new bearings, etc... I think they can bench test one prior to you ever putting in on the car...
Natesriv is offline  
post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 07:37 PM
No, Mr. Lemmywinks, No!!!

Moderator
 
Grog6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Harriman, TN
Age: 56
Posts: 10,035
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by 30thAnniversaryCat View Post
How difficult is the rebuild? Any special tools needed?
Depending on what's bad:

A soldering iron
A bearing puller
A T20 torx driver
8mm or 5/16" wrench
220 grit sandpaper
Chrome Engine paint (recommended, when the case is empty; you can paint the coils, they won't mind as long as you let it dry overnight.)
A 2004 crown vic one-way pulley. (easier on the intake)
And a rebuild kit to match the problem.

Red '96 Cougar XR-7 240k mi. '02 4R70W, PST DS : '03 PI engine, 04 maf, 24lb injectors, 2.5" exhaust, '02 4r70w + Jmod, DirtyD0g TC + cooler + 3/8" lines, 255 walbro fp. Alpine system.
Black '96 Cougar XR-7 (Lazarus) 210k mi PI Intake, '02 4R70W, Jmod, PST DS, GrogTune, Konis, Mark LCA+Poly, racecougar Custom Engine Chain, and JL and racecougar Bracing.
Black '97 Tbird Limited Edition, '02 4R70W, 255 walbro, PST DS, PBR Brakes&SS lines, Toicko Blues & Springs, GrogTune.


"War Is Peace. Freedom Is Slavery. Ignorance Is Strength." - George Orwell.
Truth Isn't Truth. - Rudy Giuliani, 2018 Award winner, “Most Outrageous Diversion” by MSNBC for this quote
Grog6 is offline  
post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-04-2017, 09:16 PM Thread Starter
3rd Gear Poster
 
30thAnniversaryCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Austin, Texas
Posts: 176
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grog6 View Post
Depending on what's bad:

A soldering iron
A bearing puller
A T20 torx driver
8mm or 5/16" wrench
220 grit sandpaper
Chrome Engine paint (recommended, when the case is empty; you can paint the coils, they won't mind as long as you let it dry overnight.)
A 2004 crown vic one-way pulley. (easier on the intake)
And a rebuild kit to match the problem.
Thanks
30thAnniversaryCat is offline  
post #21 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-05-2017, 09:59 PM Thread Starter
3rd Gear Poster
 
30thAnniversaryCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Austin, Texas
Posts: 176
Update

New battery and alternator fixed everything. I think all the electrical weirdness was due to a dead alternator and the murdered battery that was all that was running the car and just couldn't keep up.

Thanks for all your help!
30thAnniversaryCat is offline  
post #22 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-06-2017, 05:36 PM
4th Gear Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Alexandria, Virginia
Posts: 215
Great!
Jim3inVirginia is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the TCCoA Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in











Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome