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Discussion Starter #1
it only happens at startup and if you blip the throttle the lights go away for the remainder of the trip

I pulled out my VOM and started the car. The voltage across the battery was 12 vdc.

The battery and brake lights remained on in the car.

I blip the throttle, and the voltage goes right up to 14 vdc.

What an expensive thought to try and "figure out" that the alternator is going bad and be wrong.

Why can't I just have it simple like everyone else? Battery light stays on, alternator or battery is bad.

Now I will have another unsolved mystery I have to drive around for months with for months :*(
 

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turn ur key "on" but with the engine off. check voltage, should be about 12.6volts. turn on all accessories you can think of, light, blower motor, hazard lights, rear defog switch, int lights, radio, anythign else you can think of to load up the battery. leave everythign on for 15-30 seconds, then check voltage, if its below 9.6 volts, ur batt is probably starting to fail. but from what ur saying, it coudl be the alternator not outputting enoguh amperage.
these are just minor tests to do to hel pyou out, there are better tools/testers out there to pinpoint exactly whats going on, but its either gonna be ur battery, alternator or ur starter (starter draw might be excessive, causing the light at start up)

hope this helps guide u in the right direction :D
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, I tried your test and the battery stayed strong.

It's just weird how a quick blip of the throttle at startup will make the light shut off and stay off stop light after stoplight and mile after mile.

Guess I should pray on my own that its going to go away or get ready to get raped by a mechanic.

Sucks cause I live on a slant and the car will in all likely hood fall down on me if I try to work on it.

GR8
 

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Make sure your belt is tight. I was getting the lights until I tightened it, and I've been golden since.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Belt feels ok, not extremely tight or anything.

Is the FSM pretty good for the procedure on how to tighten it?

This alternator looks nearly brand new, and the last owner alleges it was brand new.

I am also reading that this can be gotten from the top?
 

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Hmmm. I wonder if this issue has anything to do with our other issues. Can you take the car to autozone? They can run a few tests and tell if your alternator is on the way out. Man, if you can pull your plenium and replace injectors, I am sure you could drop an alternator in this car. You can do it.
 

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You'll notice that the alternator is attached to a bracket on the left (as you are facing the car -- right side of the car). This has a long screw -- I'm talking like 6-8 inches long -- that you can tighten or loosen to tension the belt. I think the bolt that attaches the alternator to the screw should be approximately below the flared part of the bracket, but I could be wrong about that, so if someone else wants to chime in...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
pauley01 said:
Hmmm. I wonder if this issue has anything to do with our other issues. Can you take the car to autozone? They can run a few tests and tell if your alternator is on the way out. Man, if you can pull your plenium and replace injectors, I am sure you could drop an alternator in this car. You can do it.

hehehe, thanks man.....

I am freaked about going under the car to work on it. I just don't have that kind of luck.

but if I don't really need to :ditsy:

Maybe it does have something to do with these issues we are having?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
thefultonhow said:
You'll notice that the alternator is attached to a bracket on the left (as you are facing the car -- right side of the car). This has a long screw -- I'm talking like 6-8 inches long -- that you can tighten or loosen to tension the belt. I think the bolt that attaches the alternator to the screw should be approximately below the flared part of the bracket, but I could be wrong about that, so if someone else wants to chime in...
are you saying that simply by tightening or loosening that bolt I control tension?

i know on cars like my beater mazda you have to physically pull the alternator up or down the way you want it then tighten the tensioner.

if its that easy I am for it :beard:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
shoot the low port alternator is 2x the price of the high port......
 

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I would agree that it sounds like your alternator belt is loose. Especially since you stated that the alternator is newer, so that means the alternator belt was loosened at one time. Tighten it up a bit and see if that fixes it. If not, then it may be a bad voltage regulator.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
jjacob said:
I would agree that it sounds like your alternator belt is loose. Especially since you stated that the alternator is newer, so that means the alternator belt was loosened at one time. Tighten it up a bit and see if that fixes it. If not, then it may be a bad voltage regulator.
Thanks, anyone know if it is just a matter of tightening that bolt?

That would be awesome. Suppose I could bury my head in the FSM :shifty:
 

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Discussion Starter #13
well i tightened the bolt as tight as possible and it still does the same thing....

bizarre how the smallest throttle takes the light away
 

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i have had 2 alternators do this in the past. 1 in my g20 and 1 in my mustang. both were new (g20 was a bosch reman from napa). the problem i had in the g20 was that with the remote starter i had installed and the fan/heater motor running full blast, the car is running off battery until you hit the throttle. my dad said that its a certain part inside the alternator but i cant remember the name. either way i changed the alternator (napa replaced it for free) in the g20, but i drove around for over a year like that in my mustang.
 

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well to properly tighten your alternator belt you have to loosen the alternator and then you have to release the lock bolt then turn the adjusting screw.... I've done the change and can walk you through it if you need it. good luck bro
 

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jj94auto said:
well i tightened the bolt as tight as possible and it still does the same thing....
Define "as tight as possible"... it shouldn't be super tight because you'll destroy the alternator for sure then, and the AC compressor to boot.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks all, it is on at tight as the bolt will go just for diagnostic purposes. I won't drive the car like this for too long.

FYI I just got a 2001 Sentra alternator from the junkyard :) for $50. I didn't even have to pull it.

Do I have to replace both belts when doing this job, or just the alternator belt?

Or can I get away with using the same belt?
 

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I have the same problem. The dashboard battery warning light stays on after starting. I have an Autometer Volt gauge in the car which shows just 12 volts when the engine starts up and idles, then after blipping the throttle, it goes up to 14 volts and the warning light goes out. My yellow top battery (relocated in the rear) seems to be OK. It's definately the alternator that is on it's way out and will have to be changed.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Loek said:
I have the same problem. The dashboard battery warning light stays on after starting. I have an Autometer Volt gauge in the car which shows just 12 volts when the engine starts up and idles, then after blipping the throttle, it goes up to 14 volts and the warning light goes out. My yellow top battery (relocated in the rear) seems to be OK. It's definately the alternator that is on it's way out and will have to be changed.

ahhhhhhhh im not alone, not that misery loves company, but at least for once I don't have this weird unsolveable unique problem :teeth:
 

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Yea, I am just hoping this change in "volts" to your system is causing all your other problems. I wonder if that is possible?
 
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