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Old 01-06-2011, 10:06 PM   #1
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changing the alternator 96 max

well my max has been parked for almost 2 months because of my bad alternator. my mechanic said its $170 to replace it and i been tryin to save up to fix but i got so much bills n stuff so i keep puttin it on the back burner. but now i really miss driving my max so i want to replace it myself. but i keep looking at where it the alternator is positioned and i keep getting discouraged...so how hard is it to change it? any help is appreciated
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Old 01-06-2011, 10:36 PM   #2
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So long as you have half decent tools it isnt bad. Remember, the ac compressor CAN hang by its lines. Without hanging it from its lines out of the way it makes it a total PIA.
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Old 01-06-2011, 10:45 PM   #3
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You will laugh once you replace it because you won't believe that you didn't drive it for two months because of this. You'll need some tools though. http://www.greatnecktools.com/upload...ages/28010.jpg I'll try to remember all the steps. This might sound difficult but it's so easy a caveman could do it. Explanations have to be detailed so don't get discouraged. Break loose your lug nuts and jack up the car. I jacked up the passenger front of the car as high as I could and secured it on a jack stand. I like to lower the jack until I feel/hear/see the car press down on the jack stand and I don't completely release the jack so that the car is sitting on both but mostly the jack stand. Throw the wheel under the car too for extra safety. Remove the accessory belt by loosening the nut on the idler pulley and then loosening the tensioner nut. Keep loosening it until you can take the belt off. There are some plugs/wires on the alternator which you just unplug/unbolt. If you look at the alt. removal in the stickies it says to remove the rad. fans. Instead I moved the ac compressor out of the way by removing the four bolts holding the ac compressor onto the engine and then removed the bolts holding the alternator in place and wiggled the alternator out. I didn't unbolt the ac compressor gas lines, I just unbolted the ac compressor from it's bracket. I may have used another jack stand to hold the compressor out of the way. You will see what I mean. Install is reverse of removal. Watch these vids for more info.
Use this to remove the belt:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJzpTHIky18
Use this to unbolt the compressor from the engine/bracket just don't remove the gas lines:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJzpTHIky18
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Old 01-07-2011, 03:33 AM   #4
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don't want to discourage you, but i watched a tech replace mine and i would'nt want to do that job. he had to use at least 5 tp 8 different sockets, some were long and some of the bolts were really hard to get off. i guess if you have the time and a place to do it, then give it a shot. i would have an fsm close by to reference in case of any problems. its alot easier to do with a lift.
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Old 01-07-2011, 06:03 AM   #5
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So long as you have half decent tools it isnt bad. Remember, the ac compressor CAN hang by its lines. Without hanging it from its lines out of the way it makes it a total PIA.

bingo that is the main thing to do the ac compressor u have to take it off and let it hang after that its easy pickinss
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Old 01-07-2011, 06:12 AM   #6
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Yea its really simple to do on the lift there there is only one bolts thats holding it I believe its a 12 or 14 mm socket, get couple of long extensions and get to the bolt its in between the AC compressor and Alternator unscrew that and then fish it out from the top its pretty easy the hardest part is getting that bolt off and obviously you need to remove the belt before you attempt to get the bolt off. Good luck its not that hard.

PS I didnt have to remove the AC compressor
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Old 01-07-2011, 11:19 AM   #7
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I did mine on jackstands, it's a pita but definately doable, you don't even need expesive tools, 14mm and 12mm sockets will do the job. Just read the write up in the how to section or the many posts on the 4th gen section about it. I'm not saying it's easy, but it is definately achievable even for a novice. Just make sure you disconnect the neg battery cable before you start, and don't forget to remove the electrical connectors to the AC compressor and the alternator before you start.

P.S. Kudos to urmab for doing it without removing the ac comp.

Good luck
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Old 01-07-2011, 01:00 PM   #8
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thanks for all the inputs...i was going to attempt it today but the weather is terrible...its snowing and blowing and its about 10 degrees...plus i aint got no garage or shed...so imma wait til it warms up a bit....btw what is the amperage rating on the max? i was calling around tryin to find out the cost of the alternator and there's 110, 125 and 130 amps...
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Old 01-07-2011, 01:19 PM   #9
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My OEM was 110, which explains why my audio destroyed it. I'm replacing with a 125 and Optima battery.
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Old 01-07-2011, 02:08 PM   #10
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Its an hour job. I did mine with the car on the ground, lowered, and with a lip kit. Hardest part was yanking the alt. from under the car while that low. I wouldnt want to do it in the freezing cold but its not a big deal. Once you remove the fans and a/c its pretty simple.
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Old 01-07-2011, 04:06 PM   #11
Just the tip.

 
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If my idiot ex-wife could do it by herself I'm sure any noobie here could.
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Old 01-07-2011, 04:24 PM   #12
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$170 is one hell of a deal. The Alternator itself is about that much with tax (core return).
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Old 01-07-2011, 07:07 PM   #13
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Dude, do it yourself. Spend the money it would cost on labor for a mechanic to do it and use that to buy some tools. You'll be soo happy you did. Seriously. Good tools make it soooo easy, I replaced mine using only a 40 pc stanley socket set. The worst thing was not having a wobble socket and a short ratchet. With the tools I have now it would be retardedly easy. The right tools make it gravy, their the key ingredient. If you were nearby I would totally walk you through it. If you can learn to do your own automotive work you will save a fortune over the time of your life.
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Old 01-07-2011, 09:12 PM   #14
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Dude, do it yourself. Spend the money it would cost on labor for a mechanic to do it and use that to buy some tools. You'll be soo happy you did. Seriously. Good tools make it soooo easy, I replaced mine using only a 40 pc stanley socket set. The worst thing was not having a wobble socket and a short ratchet. With the tools I have now it would be retardedly easy. The right tools make it gravy, their the key ingredient. If you were nearby I would totally walk you through it. If you can learn to do your own automotive work you will save a fortune over the time of your life.

Good point man...i really gotta invest in some good tools...and by "good" i mean no el cheapo tools. all the tools i ever had were old cheap pieces of crap that broke really easy. i need some durable tools like Snap On or something
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Old 01-08-2011, 07:11 AM   #15
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not to knock any do-it yourselfers/ex-wifes in here, i watched a tech do it and it took him am hour and a half. nothing needs to come off, and the ac compressor just gets pushed foward and the alt. gets yanked out passed it. seriously tho, if you aint got a garage, with light and a lift, find a local garage to do it, i paid 150.00 for mine to be installed and 180.00 for a 125 amp napa alty and the day he did it it was like 20 degrees, **** doing that outside in the winter. 330.00 well spent if you ask me.
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Old 01-08-2011, 08:42 AM   #16
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Good point man...i really gotta invest in some good tools...and by "good" i mean no el cheapo tools. all the tools i ever had were old cheap pieces of crap that broke really easy. i need some durable tools like Snap On or something
No you dont need Snap-On tools. If you spend the money on Snap-On, Mac, or Matco you better be a pro. Ive got some Snap-On and Mac tools which dont do me any more good than Huskey, Kobalt, or Craftsman. Craftsman tools do the average Joe just fine. Stanley are plenty good as well. I perfer Craftsman beacuse of the large selection and warranty on their hand tools. If I break it, I can just drive to Sears that day. If I break my Snap-On I'll be waiting a week to see the truck.
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Old 01-12-2011, 04:34 PM   #17
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changed my altenator a few weeks ago here are sum suggestions if you do decide to change it yourself...

1. DO NOT I REPEAT DO NOT LET YOUR AC COMPRESSOR HANG BY THE LINES!!!

2. I recommend moving the radiator fan to create space

3. try not to break your idler tensioner when removing the belt

4. make sure all brackets and misc. components are put back in the same order they were removed.

5. Have someone experienced present or in reach.

6. Prepare for a long afternoon

7. Have fun and when you feel like you can't finish just smile!
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Old 01-14-2011, 11:19 PM   #18
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You don't need expensive tools. I have that same ratchet set that I posted. It's not el cheapo but it ain't snap-on. You can choose what is easier to do, remove fans/rad whatever or move the ac compressor aside. I decided to do the compressor because you're in there anyway and it's simple. A novice can do this with jack-stands.
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Old 01-15-2011, 07:03 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by ProW649 View Post
changed my altenator a few weeks ago here are sum suggestions if you do decide to change it yourself...

1. DO NOT I REPEAT DO NOT LET YOUR AC COMPRESSOR HANG BY THE LINES!!!

2. I recommend moving the radiator fan to create space

3. try not to break your idler tensioner when removing the belt

4. make sure all brackets and misc. components are put back in the same order they were removed.

5. Have someone experienced present or in reach.

6. Prepare for a long afternoon

7. Have fun and when you feel like you can't finish just smile!

that would be your advice miggy...i bet it will only take me an hour for my first time doing it today on my wifes 01 max.

ps book time is an hour and a half for the job
and you dont need to remove the fans
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Old 01-15-2011, 02:00 PM   #20
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Not really too difficult to do, hardest part is pulling to alt out after you unbolt it. Took under 2 hours to swap my stocker for a Dc power 275XP series alt
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Old 01-15-2011, 06:04 PM   #21
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that would be your advice miggy...i bet it will only take me an hour for my first time doing it today on my wifes 01 max.

ps book time is an hour and a half for the job
and you dont need to remove the fans
Im not Miggy??
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Old 01-15-2011, 07:24 PM   #22
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my bad too much to drink too early

haha but alternator done in an hour and 10 mins without the fan removal
would have done it faster but lost the bracket to the upper part of the alternator so i made a new bracket
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Old 01-15-2011, 11:39 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hornepirate View Post
my bad too much to drink too early

haha but alternator done in an hour and 10 mins without the fan removal
would have done it faster but lost the bracket to the upper part of the alternator so i made a new bracket

i gotcha
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Old 01-16-2011, 09:13 AM   #24
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I'll be doing this on my 98 today. Not looking forward to it at all.
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Old 01-16-2011, 09:21 AM   #25
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I'll be doing this on my 98 today. Not looking forward to it at all.
Make sure to have a cold one ready
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Old 01-16-2011, 09:33 AM   #26
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Make sure to have a cold one ready
Dammit
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Old 01-16-2011, 09:52 AM   #27
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Dammit
Lol its not to bad. Last time i did it i used a 5 gallon bucket for the ac comp to sit on after it was unbolted from the mounting bracket. If you have the hanyes manual for the car it walks thru everything. Good luck
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Old 01-21-2011, 11:32 AM   #28
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I may need to replace my alt soon. I would be willing to do this DIY if it wasn't so darn coooolddd out.
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Old 01-22-2011, 07:16 PM   #29
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Update....well ppl i ended up taking my car to the mechanic and got my alternator replaced...my baby is officially back on the road!!! cost me $221 which ain't too bad...there is no way i would've been able to do it myself...not in this weather...it's constantly below zero out here!! the mechanic said that the alternator charged fine until he turned on the lights and stuff and then i would stop charging. he said the bearing and things were fine but there was a electrode or something that burned out when the alternator caught on fire. I still don't kno why it started on fire! oh well...guess i'll never know
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Old 01-31-2011, 07:26 PM   #30
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Just pulled ours off the 96 was a piece of cake really
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Old 01-31-2011, 07:44 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christobal65 View Post
Just pulled ours off the 96 was a piece of cake really
Yea it wasn't nearly as bad as people said. But for people who don't change their own oil, I don't suggest try it though
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Old 02-11-2011, 09:13 PM   #32
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Can anyone tell me how to remove lower mount bolt. It is blocked by pulley and has little space.
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Old 02-12-2011, 10:00 AM   #33
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it's ez just take the old one out and put the new one in.
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:23 AM   #34
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While we are on the topic of alternators, what do you guys recommend for the make of the alternator?
I'm looking at the AutoZone Alternator, it's manufactured by Duralast, probably a reman'd Hitachi:
http://www.autozone.com/autozone/par...34_23521_4444_

Alternatively, a Denso one, probably a reman'd Hitachi as well:
http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_Reman-Alternator-Denso_20850338-P_11_R|GRPALTSAMS_1137006123___

Any other brands or feedback is appreciated.
Thanks for your help.
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Old 09-02-2011, 11:51 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by idreammaker View Post
Can anyone tell me how to remove lower mount bolt. It is blocked by pulley and has little space.
Did my alternator last night.


Left the fans in, my main problem was the lower radiator hose was in the way, not so much the fans.

The lower bolt is above the AC compressor and is difficult to get at. You have to go up along the y pipe and its a long bolt that passes thru the alternator and is secured by a square nut welded to a metal plate behind the belt tensioner pulley. I removed the 4 AC compressor bolts and was able to get to it a little easier tho still tough.

Like everyone said the alternator was like a puzzle piece getting the old one out and the new one in. The lower radiator hose causes a bit of a headache along with the AC compressor.

I'd never done an alternator before, though I've done lots of other repairs on the car and it took me 4 hours total. That includes 2 trips back into the house to figure out how to attack that lower bolt.

Def a doable job for anyone wanting to tackle it. Not as easy as say a starter but not that complicated either.
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Old 07-12-2013, 08:27 PM   #36
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UPSXPRESS
Bump, can I change it without lifting the car? I only have ramps and since the car is dead I can't get it onto them
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Old 07-13-2013, 12:25 AM   #37
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You do not need to jack up the car. I did mine in 45 mins with basic tools on my driveway. No jack or jack stands used.
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Old 07-13-2013, 05:35 AM   #38
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Alrighty, I'll give it a shot then
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Old 07-13-2013, 06:28 AM   #39
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Wait, do I really have to get under the car and loosen the AC compressor, and etc.? I was going to loosen the tensioner bolts from the top, move belt to the side, and try to get the alternator bolts from the top. I am just trying to see where those alternator bolts are
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Old 07-13-2013, 02:22 PM   #40
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There's two bolts. The one top, that you can loosen from the top, and the bottom one that you WILL have take out from under the car.
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Old 07-13-2013, 02:22 PM
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