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Old 07-10-2010, 09:28 PM   #41
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<snip>

My only question is does anyone know how reliable those testing tools are that AutoZone uses?
Well, a few years back, I had a problem with the charging system on my '84 Lincoln Town Car. I replaced the alternator with a rebuilt, lifetime warranty unit from AutoZone. Now, I was at least getting voltage out of it, but battery was still going down. Went back to AutoZone, they got out their little tester, and told me alternator was bad. Replaced it, still had the same problem. Tester said alternator was bad again. Went home, did a little checking of my own, determined problem was in voltage regulator (external on that car). Replaced regulator, charging system worked fine.

Problem may have been in the tester, or the person using tester. They probably would have gone on replacing the alternator under warranty.
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Old 07-10-2010, 11:28 PM   #42
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That's funny, he specifically said the voltage regulator came up as failed. I wonder where this is on the Honda? Hmm. Gonna have to dig tomorrow to check.
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Old 07-11-2010, 01:31 AM   #43
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Voltage regulators are usually in the alternators these days, sometimes in older cars they're in the ECU or a separate part altogether.
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Old 07-11-2010, 05:01 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by add|ct View Post
Funny, my VX here pulls to the left. I'm sure the ONE steel wheel, guess where?
Does its tire match the other front tire? I don't think a different wheel can cause that unless its offset is different. You can confirm it, and fix your pulling, by swapping that wheel+tire with one of the rear wheel+tires.

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My only question is does anyone know how reliable those testing tools are that AutoZone uses?
They probably prefer their equipment to err on the side of selling you a new alternator whenever it's questionable or improperly used.

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Went back to AutoZone, they got out their little tester, and told me alternator was bad.
Wait, are you guys talking about a portable tester that hooks up to the car? You should be taking the alternator off and bringing it to the store to be bench-tested. That is said to be (and probably really is) far more accurate.
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Old 07-11-2010, 07:40 AM   #45
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Yes, I think I'll just pull the thing off and take it to Napa for testing.

I'll need it off for the 'core' charge to not be included in the price.

Oh, and it was a steel wheel slapped on after their wreck, I'd imagine, placed on the driver's side/front and the other 3 were the original HX/VX wheels. It didn't help that the CVs were close to death, though.
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Old 07-11-2010, 07:54 AM   #46
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If you had a scan gauge working on the car you can check the voltage with that - a properly operating alternator and regulartor (usually built into the alternator) should maintain about 14.0 volts but anything form 13.9 to 14.2 is also ok - while measuring the voltage turn on your lights and the voltage might dip a little than come back up almost instantly. If the voltage is lower than that it is the alternator or regulator . . . one thing you can check if you want to is to see if the brushes in the alternator are in good shape. They are sometimes located under a little hatch and can be removed without taking the alternator off the car although easier to do on the bench. Sometimes they get hung up and don't make good contact with the slip rings on the rotor and you loose output from that. ALSO make sure that the ground bolts to the alternator and the engine and battery are tight and that the red output wire on the alternator going to the battery positive terminal is good and solid - give it a tug and make sure it doesn't fall apart.
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Old 07-11-2010, 03:38 PM   #47
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Thanks for the heads up. I'm putting it up on ramps again this evening to start taking the alternator off, since Napa can test it for free in house. I'll inspect the wires around the terminals related to the battery/alternator, I had a battery boiling over from a bad connection with the wires at the 'jump off' location. Re-configured to make it snug and the battery stopped over-boiling. Alternator and battery survived.
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Old 07-11-2010, 06:11 PM   #48
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Okay, I was looking around for replacement alternators and found a listing for voltage regulators.

Does the VX have an external voltage regulator as well as one in the alternator? It appears so as per the parts guide, but don't know quite where to look in the engine for this.

Also, would going to an "85A" rated alternator would be worth it from the 70A it calls for?

EDIT: Apparently, the voltage regulator itself can be replaced by working on the alternator internally, based on which alternator you have that is. Good chance to see if the wiring is up to spec or too short for servicing.
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:02 AM   #49
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Question Alternator checks out, mechanic running tests

Okay guys, I got some relatively bad news, if you will.

I had my Honda mechanic test the alternator, and he said that it passed. They are trying to run diagnostics to see what could be the problem that I've been describing in here. So, good alternator and good battery, apparently. I'll let you know if they find out anything.

I called the mechanic back just now, after giving the go ahead with further investigating the 'problem' in order to mention that I had used SeaFoam in the crankcase prior to my last oil change. I mentioned about the screen possibly being clogged and wondering if that could be causing the problems here, but since he said my oil light hadn't come on yet I shouldn't worry about that. He examined the oil pan dent, but doesn't believe that that has anything to do with what's going on and its not worth the labor + parts to just pull and inspect/re-install pan. So, they're in there working for me now. We'll see where it goes. :fingers-crossed:
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Old 07-13-2010, 02:05 PM   #50
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UPDATE:

Mechanic cleaned EGR valve. Did apprx 4 hours of troubleshooting various potentially related things. Verified that problem is just more or less related to LAF sensor CEL code that keeps being thrown; leaning me to believe these symptoms are related to it being a 'lean burn' engine(No pun intended).

Original post:

I've found some additional information on several forums, including here, that leans towards my symptoms. Apparently, the VX is more prone to these symptoms, especially given that it needs a valve clearance check every 15k, or once a year.

http://www.gassavers.org/showpost.ph...2&postcount=20

Entire thread: http://www.gassavers.org/showthread....1652#post51652

Other thread:

http://www.hondasclub.com/92-civic-v...ration-problem

Please note the first 4 posts on the last link. It seems to be what I'm experiencing.
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