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Is it the alternator? #4182236
08/20/16 01:38 PM
08/20/16 01:38 PM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,717
Richmond, VA
Barkleymut Offline OP
Barkleymut  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,717
Richmond, VA
My 96 F150 started losing juice on the electrical system on Thursday. Drove it to work on Friday (had no choice) and by the time i got there the battery was dead. Got a jump and made it home but everything was dying, even the speedometer didn't work. Put the battery on a charger overnight and the truck runs fine now. I'm about to run up to AutoZone to get a new alternator but just wanted ya'lls opinion on whether there is anything else it could be.

95 F150 5.0 5 speed standard cab 2wd long bed 97k miles. A few dents and scratches but man she is pretty smile


09 Vue(95K) 2.4 4spd AT -PU 5w30 / 09 Flex(52K)3.5L PU / Moms car 04 Pilot(105K) 5w20 PP + Puro
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182241
08/20/16 01:49 PM
08/20/16 01:49 PM
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 11,154
Bad Axe, MI
daman Offline
daman  Offline
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 11,154
Bad Axe, MI
Yup alt id say.


"Always"....Mobil 1

Current fill: AFE 0w30
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182244
08/20/16 01:57 PM
08/20/16 01:57 PM
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 5,908
MIchigan
Warstud Offline
Warstud  Offline
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 5,908
MIchigan
Yep... prolly the alternator. If the battery dies while driving it's probably a bad alternator. If the battery is dead when you start it.... it's probably a bad battery.

Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182246
08/20/16 01:57 PM
08/20/16 01:57 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 5,932
Champlain/Hudson Valley
Kira Offline
Kira  Offline
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 5,932
Champlain/Hudson Valley
Did you check the voltage while the engine was running?
It sure sounds like it's the alternator but maybe you have an extremely corroded battery clamp on your battery cable.
My friend had one which was nearly 100% corrosion inside the swag.

Also, what's all the 12V stuff on the firewall of that truck? A pal has a '97 and there are no straight shots between the alternator-battery-starter.
Battery voltage goes into that assembly on the firewall (forward of the passenger's knees.
It's full of relays and heaven knows what. Is there something in there which can stick?

Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182251
08/20/16 02:10 PM
08/20/16 02:10 PM
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 4,407
Kansas
Kruse Offline
Kruse  Offline
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 4,407
Kansas
Originally Posted By: Barkleymut

95 F150 5.0 5 speed standard cab 2wd long bed 97k miles.


I've owned quite a few Ford trucks from that era (I still own a '97 F250) and I'd always have alternator problems between 100K-130K miles. Of course, I live on a dusty gravel road, so that may be why they failed that early. IMO, if the alternator has not failed, it will happen soon, so I'd have the thing rebuilt or replaced now.

Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182252
08/20/16 02:10 PM
08/20/16 02:10 PM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,717
Richmond, VA
Barkleymut Offline OP
Barkleymut  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,717
Richmond, VA
From what I read earlier (not on BITOG) there is a huge fuse in there. I'm a rookie when it comes to electrical stuff.


09 Vue(95K) 2.4 4spd AT -PU 5w30 / 09 Flex(52K)3.5L PU / Moms car 04 Pilot(105K) 5w20 PP + Puro
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182255
08/20/16 02:17 PM
08/20/16 02:17 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 10,534
Illinois
javacontour Offline
javacontour  Offline
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 10,534
Illinois
Originally Posted By: Barkleymut
My 96 F150 started losing juice on the electrical system on Thursday. Drove it to work on Friday (had no choice) and by the time i got there the battery was dead. Got a jump and made it home but everything was dying, even the speedometer didn't work. Put the battery on a charger overnight and the truck runs fine now. I'm about to run up to AutoZone to get a new alternator but just wanted ya'lls opinion on whether there is anything else it could be.

95 F150 5.0 5 speed standard cab 2wd long bed 97k miles. A few dents and scratches but man she is pretty smile


Have them test the old one AND if you buy a replacement, have it tested before you leave the store. It's a real pain to get home, install something, only to find out it too was bad.


network down, IP packets delivered via UPS -BOFH
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182256
08/20/16 02:18 PM
08/20/16 02:18 PM
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 5,091
USA
NHGUY Offline
NHGUY  Offline
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 5,091
USA
If this Ford has the infamous 2 plug alternator,REPLACE the elongated squared off plug with a new one installing the new unit.Good units will give you one in the box.Plenty of 80s and 90s Fords have burnt up thanks to that lousy connection.

Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182260
08/20/16 02:23 PM
08/20/16 02:23 PM
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 5,091
USA
NHGUY Offline
NHGUY  Offline
Joined: Oct 2011
Posts: 5,091
USA
OK,it shouldn't have that bad plug in setup....I checked.

Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182269
08/20/16 02:34 PM
08/20/16 02:34 PM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,717
Richmond, VA
Barkleymut Offline OP
Barkleymut  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,717
Richmond, VA
thanks for checking, I was just about to go take a pic of my alternator and post.


09 Vue(95K) 2.4 4spd AT -PU 5w30 / 09 Flex(52K)3.5L PU / Moms car 04 Pilot(105K) 5w20 PP + Puro
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182274
08/20/16 02:46 PM
08/20/16 02:46 PM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 6,073
Kalifornia Kollective
BrocLuno Offline
BrocLuno  Offline
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 6,073
Kalifornia Kollective
Couple of things. Yes, it's prolly the alternator. But, the truck is getting a bit long in the tooth (20 years) so I'd say the ground side was getting crevice corrosion, minor salt bridges, etc.

So all the stuff on the positive side has voltage to help it do whatever. But all that current has to return to source through the ground side with 0 voltage (it's been used up by the device). Not as easy to do ...

So for all Fords over about 10 years old, I always add new grounds. Say #4 cable with crimped and soldered lugs between the Bat (-) and the alternator bracket. Then another say #8 between the intake manifold (any convenient bolt) and the fire-wall (a hood hinge bolt works well). Same crimped and soldered lugs assembly.

There are lots of old Fords that will not charge the battery fully because the built-in regulator can not see the real ground, but see's an offset ground based on how much resistance it has on the ground-path back to the battery.

A new one from the Bat (-) clamp bolt/nut to the alternator mount eliminates that resistance and makes the regulator much more effective. Adding these two new grounds will make the whole system work better and it will start and run much easier. Has for every one I've done, and that's more than a dozen in the last ten years of so ...


Formerly in marine engineering. In an earlier life I owned my own petroleum tank truck, and hauled for the majors and independent's.
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: BrocLuno] #4182280
08/20/16 02:54 PM
08/20/16 02:54 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,149
Coastal South Carolina
edwardh1 Offline
edwardh1  Offline
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,149
Coastal South Carolina
commonly done to 90 -99 Maximas also, and its cheap


These products are all new every year?? They are a revolution!!! Razor blades, mens shirts, TVs, wiper blades, gutter guards, hearing aids... according to the ads. But also all new last year
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182297
08/20/16 03:17 PM
08/20/16 03:17 PM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 9,808
New Jersey
crazyoildude Offline
crazyoildude  Offline
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 9,808
New Jersey
Check all connections first ... All of them including the ones on the alternator check the voltage on the battery and start it up and make sure it is charging with a voltmeter..Sometimes its a bad connection but the alternator could be bad also...How old is the battery? A weak or bad battery can cause problems also.


Check To See That The Oil Jugs You Buy Have The Exact Amount Of Oil In Them And Have An Inner Seal Under The Cap. I Use Mobil 1 And Fram Ultra Filters
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182361
08/20/16 05:11 PM
08/20/16 05:11 PM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 6,073
Kalifornia Kollective
BrocLuno Offline
BrocLuno  Offline
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 6,073
Kalifornia Kollective
Problem with checking and cleaning some of these Fords is that they buried the main ground point on a bolt on the side of the engine block right above the cross-member. It can not be easily accessed, is often rusted solid, so it never gets cleaned or serviced ... It's one of those "what was Ford thinking" things that we have to work around ... frown

But I agree with everything CrazyOilDude says above smile


Formerly in marine engineering. In an earlier life I owned my own petroleum tank truck, and hauled for the majors and independent's.
Re: Is it the alternator? [Re: Barkleymut] #4182370
08/20/16 05:17 PM
08/20/16 05:17 PM
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 42,288
New Jersey
JHZR2 Offline
JHZR2  Offline
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 42,288
New Jersey
Could be a shorted cell in the battery or a bad diode in the alternator.

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