Voltmeter Light Was Regulator Thanks For The Help

Brice Warnick Brice2004 at webtv.net
Tue Feb 15 01:09:41 EST 2005

I want to thank everyone who helped me with this problem and pointed me
to the voltage regulator.
I called Rod at TPC and he said to try to find one locally as I was
down.  He had a Bosch voltage regulator 034 903 803 for $39.00 and a
Bosch rebuilt alternator 034 903 017BX for $215.00
With the help from this list and from Rod I decided to try the voltage
regulator first.
I got a new Bosch locally for $38.00 and even had it delivered free by
the owner of the shop who lives a few blocks away.
I jacked the car up on the passenger side.
I had to take 4 8mm bolts off the black cover on the alternator. To get
the one at the left middle side I had to use my Craftsman mini rachet.
To get the onew on top I had to take the hose off to get to it and used
a long thin 8mm wrench.
I also removed the 10mm nut that holds the wire cables.just to give me
more room. 
I had to cut the orange plastic tie holding the black air duct  to move
the cover freely.
I had to use my Craftsman mini wrench again to get at the Phillips screw
on the left of the voltage regulator. Both screw heads were degraded and
mushy. If I was to plan this job ahead I would get new screws.
I pulled the old voltage regulator and was astouded at how far the
bushings were down. One of them had almost nothing left and the other
had just a tiny bit left maybe 1/10 of what the new one had. It is a
wonder that my alternator worked at all for as long as it did.
After seeing the old one there was no damn doubt at all what the problem
I dont see why anyone would fool with gettiing just the brushes and
soldering them in as a new OEM regulator is so cheap. Plus there could
be other problems in the regulator besides the brushes. The old one was
also very dirty.
The copper core that the brushes touch in the rotor looked good as far
as I could tell. How do you tell for sure just visually?
Putting everything back was a breeze.
I tried starting it and just got clicking so I called AAA and they
jumped me and ran an alternator and battery test and everything checked
out great. The battery test was 12.63V measuring 615CCA with a 650CCA
rated battery.
The alternator test was 13.46V with load off and 13.40V with load on.
I let it run for 30 minutes and a good to go.
Again, thanks so very much for the quick help.
I still cant figure ot the slight burning smell. 
It could have just been a coincidence or could it have been from an
arcing regulator? 
So the whole ordeal only cost me $38.00.

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