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Thread: HELP!!! Alternator Problems

  1. #1
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    Own a 1996 Chicago Armor 120, 50,000 miles.
    Can't keep an alternator on it lately. Original alternator lasted 11,000 miles, next
    lasted 22,000 miles, netx approx 10,000 miles. After that point something changed in the car and now you can't keep an alternator on the car for more the a month. Changed alternators, regulators (Ford parts), connectors, checked cables, all O.K. Thought we found it last time - connected jumpoer box and car started. If you disconnected the ground cable from the battery the car quit, if you removed the positive cable from the battery the car kept running. Thought it might be bad ground - mechanic says no. Also smelled burning odor but could not find any damage. DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY IDEAS?????

  2. #2
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    SELL THE CAR!

  3. #3
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    Are you charging the battery before you run
    the car with the new altenator? I learned
    the hard way that not having fully charged
    batteries with a new alt.will severely
    shorten the life of it. It's very possible
    that your mech. doesnt realize this or maybe doesnt care.
    Otherwise the prob. doesnt sound serious,
    sounds like you need a new mech. who doesnt
    give up so easily.

  4. #4
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    I THINK YOU NEED TO LOOK INTO THE ELECTRICAL SYSTEM OF THE CAR SOUNDS LIKE YOUR GETTING TO MUCH DRAW ON YOUR ALT BATTERY SET UP.LOOK BEHIND YOUR DRIVER COMPARTMENT OF YOUR CAR SEE IF YOU HAVE ANY GROUNDS LOOSE .GET A VOLT METER SEE IF YOUR GETTING 12 TO 14 VOLTS ON YOUR ALT ,BATT, AND YOUR RED CONSTANT POWER WIRE BEHIND THE DRIVER OR PASS SEAT. DO YOU HAVE A DULL ALT SET UP ON YOUR CAR? ALSO DO YOU HAVE DULL BATTERIES ON YOUR CAR? IF YES MABEY YOU NEED TO LOOK INTO A BIGGER ALT FOR YOUR CAR.TAKE YOUR TIME GOOD LUCK.

  5. #5
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    Found the problem finally. Something was messed up in the main battery. When limo ran for an extended period, apparently the plates inside the battery got hot and shifted, voltage in the battery dropped dramatically,
    alternator burned up trying to charge a defective battery. When battery cooled, everything showed as normal. Discovered it by turning everything on, front and back - even left doors open. Mechanic had meters attached. After running for a while, car started to putter and stall, mechanic checked meters and detected big voltage drop. Put in new battery - repeated the test by turning everything on - ran fine. The next extended run for this limo will tell the tale.

  6. #6
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    We have burned up two alternators in our 97 Lincoln 120 in one year. The last one occurred Thurday during an airport run and we had to cancel the ride which cost us over $400.00. We are now upgrading to duel alternators on the vehicle and would like to know from operators who have the duel alternators how well this works. It seems that after 97 the coachbuilders started doing this as a norm. My mechanic said that the car was drawing too much power at idle and the duel alternators will prevent the problem from reoccurring. Is this true? I understand nothing is a sure thing. Comments?

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    Brandy Fuller
    Owner S.L.S.

  7. #7
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    Now is that "duel" alternators or "dual"? Are the dual alternators dueling" Bang! Bang! I thought dueling was extinct.
    Anyhow, If you choose not to use two alternators, you might put a smaller pully on the one alternator. This will cause the alt. to spin faster at idle thereby producing a greater output. The downside to this is if you get the engine rpms up high enough for an extended period of time (ie: crusing at 120-130 mph) you'll burn out the alt., though the likelyhood of that situation is remote.

  8. #8
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    Duel vs Dual. I was up late that night and had a typo but thanks for pointing that out. I always try to check my spelling before posting, but sometimes things get through.

    Thanks for the information, I went ahead and installed the DUAL alts. The upgrade cost me $1,500.00 but if it saves me from breaking down it will be well worth it.

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    Brandy Fuller
    Owner S.L.S.

  9. #9
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    With respect to dual alternators. A new system was designed and patented by RWI Limousine Repairs, Inc. in Lodi NJ. Russ of RWI has developed a system exclusively for Lincoln Naviagtors, Town Cars or any ford product whereby the secondary alternator is mounted underneath the V belt. He uses two original Ford alternators. The typical proline alternators usually last a year. You will notice increased power and never have any power surges or dimming. His system is currently being used on Krystal, Tiffany and Ultra models. Call the man yourself at 973-472-8800.

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    Kevin TRU Limo

  10. #10
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    Im an auto electrician in australia and find it interesting to hear about your electrical problems with limos.

    STARLITE - what did you get for your 1500 u.s bucks?? Was it 2 alts / isolators / dual batteries as well? I find it very expensive for any type of setup.

    What I have done with dual alternator setups in the past is to fit 2 common / standard BOSCH alternators and make brakets to suit the engine. This reduces downtime in repairs as parts / complete alternators are redily available (in Australia anyway) and way cheaper than the factory alt!!

    Also running a separate battery for the limo gear (lights, TV, VID windows etc) hooked to one alt is a good idea. Running heavy duty STARTER cable (From positive Bat. to positive on AUX bat) with a heavy duty solenoid in line and a switch on the dash to turn it on, is a cost effective way of charging both batteries of either alt if one fails. You can also start the car (off the AUX battery) if the main engine battery goes flat with the flick of the switch on the dash. You dont even have to lift the bonnet or get dirty!!

    CONFUSED?? email me if you would like more info or diagrams on how to do this.

    Send me your electrical problems as I would be happy to help.

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  11. #11
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    Are you running a 160 amp altenator, or stock alt?In any case, take the alt to your local alt rebuilder and have it buit up to 200 amps. I had to do that with my 165" ultra. To many lights, not enuff power.There is also a new voltage regulator out, it mounts to the fender and has 3 lights on it. Lights out running and charging fine, when a light comes on, you have a problem.
    Total setup cost me $375.00.

  12. #12
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    Post Need that pully system

    I have a 2001 Cadillac which uses that system and the pully need to be replaced. I cannot find the pully anywhere. I Need help immediately locating the part....

    Bryant

  13. #13
    Senior Member MrQ45Limo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrlmd2 View Post
    I have a 2001 Cadillac which uses that system and the pully need to be replaced. I cannot find the pully anywhere. I Need help immediately locating the part....

    Bryant
    Nations Alternator 573-334-2632
    if they don't have it they can make it. these guy's are the best in the entire country, they are Amazing to work with contact name over there is Adam.
    Last edited by MrQ45Limo; May 5th, 2016 at 12:56 PM.
    Badger State Limousine Service
    "When nothing less than perfection will do"
    (414)-GO-GO-RED (414)-464-6733
    www. BADGERSTATELIMO.com

    http://www.Badgerstatelimo.com
    http://www.MILWAUKEEWISCONSINLIMO.com

  14. #14

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    We have a 2007 F550 Krystal party bus in our fleet, it has the dual alternator system with the high rev idle control and we just had change one of them last week. this is the third alternator we had Changed since we bought the bus 2 years ago, they just go bad i guess..

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