A Concise Look At Car And Truck Alternator Maintenance

by Victor Hood

Are you looking to replace what could be a failed car or truck alternator? Are you confident enough to say that this isn't a battery or starter issue? Determining which part has failed is essential toward avoiding unnecessarily replacing something that hasn't failed, like your battery. We have come up with a few quick and easy to follow steps that could help you determine whether it's time to dig a grave for your alternator.

If you own an alternator testing machine, you can test to see whether your car's alternator is charging correctly. However, not everybody owns such equipment, which, furthermore, is one of the more expensive pieces of automotive equipment to own. For everyone else, there is a practical way for you to easily check to see if your alternator is working properly:

Connect a volt meter to your car's battery

Start your car

So you can be sure of making a judicious prognosis of your alternator, keep a close eye on the voltage output showing on the volt meter.

If upon starting the car you notice an increase in voltage, then there's a good chance that your alternator is in the pink of health. Something else, probably your battery, may be the problem here, so your next step would be to inspect the battery before coming up with a conclusive analysis of the problem.

However, the alternator may indeed be the problem if there is no noticeable voltage increase after starting the car.

So if you have concluded that the alternator does indeed need replacement, would you replace it on your own or have somebody else handle it? Here are just a few of the essential considerations as you mull over who's that "someone" who will be doing the dirty job that has to be done.

What would be the cost of parts and labor if you decide to entrust your vehicle to the care of a professional mechanic? Does the mechanic offer a guarantee?

But if you would be handling this independently, do you have the requisite tools to replace an alternator? Do you own a repair manual? Are you going to opt for a brand new alternator or a remanufactured alternator in lieu of a new unit?

The advent of Internet retailers simply means that as a consumer, you have a cornucopia of choices when shopping for affordable and high-quality auto parts. There are even online wholesalers who specialize in direct selling of auto parts. Costs are generally much lower than local retail establishments and parts are from well known manufacturers, names you can trust in the business.

Doing the work yourself can save you time and money as well as give to you a sense of accomplishment. So what are you waiting for - dust off that repair manual of yours and proceed to replace the alternator of your vehicle with little to no difficulty!

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