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Old May 7th, 2003, 19:30
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: Asheville, NC
Posts: 49
Need alternator schoolin'

OK,
As I've just done the H4 upgrade w/ 80/100's and also have 130w driving lights, I've been thinking it might be time to do an alt upgrade. I admit I haven't gotten my hands on a voltmeter yet to see how how healthy my current setup is, though. As always, price is an issue, so the superduper fancy ones are out.
Question 1: How many amps is enough? (I don't have and never will have a winch or onboard welder. Same goes for big stereo amps. I run a small CB. I am, however, a light junkie and plan on adding more in the future.)
Question 2: Is there a particular alt I should look for?
Question 3: Will my exisiting alt ('99) be interchangable with my girls '96(H.O.)? The reason I ask is because hers is reading a little low on the guage, maybe around 12v. and it has a brand new batt. I haven't tested her alt w/ a voltmeter yet, but I was just wondering if I could swap mine over since its newer and *seems* to be working well...

Thanks for any advice,
-mike
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Old May 7th, 2003, 19:58
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gptherezonlyone gptherezonlyone is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Wilmington, NC
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1. That Nippondenso powers everything I got and you name it that is 12 volt and it is on there. I do run 2 1000 CCA batteries but I know to not run the AC and 5 pair of Hella 500's and the 130 watt H4s all with the stereo turned all the way up and the windsheild wipers going at the same time.
2. That mean green alternator looks the best but at an idle is where the difference should be and it is not. At an idle your 120 amp alternator puts out about 50 amps and there's will do 65 amps at idle and 150 amps highway. Not worth $409 to me.
3. a. The alternator from late 96 will work through 2001. Somewhere in that year was there change over. I have a 9/96 that is everything a 2001 is, electronically.
b. I would not trust that gauge on that older style dash or any dash, they are just to ballpark for me. I would have the 96 tested and leave the 99 alone and maybe upgrade your battery.
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Old May 7th, 2003, 20:08
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Location: Asheville, NC
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I agree - before I make any decisions, I need to test both elec systems. I plan to add an Optima or Diehard (since I have a sears card), and upgrade all the cables, soon. That may be enough.
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