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FD Diesel alternator replacement

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Offline BrendanP

  • Technical Advisor
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    • Posts: 387

    • gb United Kingdom
      East Midlands
I'm in the process of replacing the alternator on my old 2011 right-hand drive diesel. I've got as far as taking the old one off, just waiting for a reconditioned one to arrive. I took it apart and as expected, the slip-rings have deep grooves worn in them, and the brushes are worn down to almost nothing, but they've done pretty well to last 250,000 miles. Just a few tips for getting it out, assuming you're working from above.
 
1. Disconnect battery -ve terminal.
2. Have a pair of small side cutters on hand to snip through the cable-tie that straps the power cable to the alternator, as well as disconnecting the power cable to the alternator terminal, and unplugging the smaller wires.
3. Remove the screws holding the clutch fluid reservoir to the suspension turret so you can move the reservoir and hose aside to make space to lift the alternator out. Take care to keep it upright so the fluid doesn't spill.
4. Undo the screws which hold the alternator wiring where it runs across the cylinder head so it can be pulled out of the way. Same applies to the bracket holding the wiring loom to the glow plugs & injectors.
5. After removing the drive belt off the alternator pulley, remove the top alternator bolt and loosen the lower one. Swing the alternator back and tie some thin rope through the hole the upper bolt goes through. Tie the other end to the steel loop in the front of the bonnet. This means you won't drop the alternator, or if you need to rest, you can just leave it hanging.
6. Manoeuvre the alternator upwards, out of the engine bay. It's a pretty tight squeeze between the bulkhead and the coolant hose, but moving the wiring and reservoir out of the way as described in 3 and 4 gives that little bit extra space.
7. I expect fitting the new one will be doing this sequence in reverse, have some cable ties on hand to replace those that had to be cut away.
8. When re-fitting the drive belt, I don't bother trying to lock the tensioner in position. Trying to get the belt to line up with all of the pulleys is like herding cats, especially if it's a new belt which has been folded up in a cardboard sleeve. I keep a bit of tension on the belt as I go around lining it up on each pulley, leaving the alternator pulley as the last one to slip it over. Then I use a socket wrench to push the tensioner back just enough to slip the belt over. Finally, go round each pulley and idler roller to double-check the belt is in the middle, backing off the tension if required to pull the belt over so it's seated properly.

Attached photos show the slip-rings and brushes. I did think about replacing them myself but as the car is needed for work, every day off the road costs money.



  • i30 CRD


Offline william

  • 2nd Gear
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    • Posts: 69

    • au Australia
      Victoria
Hi,
You've done well to get 250,000 miles out of it, I replaced mine at 380,000 km or roughly 236,000 miles.



  • i30 wagon 09


Offline BrendanP

  • Technical Advisor
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    • Posts: 387

    • gb United Kingdom
      East Midlands
A quick update. The replacement alternator arrived on time and was easy enough to fit, other than the threaded bush for the upper mounting bolt which wasn't fully pressed in to the alternator housing. Having squeezed the alternator through the gap to get it into position behind the engine, I couldn't slide the alternator over the  bracket which holds it. That meant extricating the alternator back out of the car, tapping the bush in until it was fully seated, then trying again. Something I should have checked when I took it out of the box, I suppose.
  • i30 CRD


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