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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 11:50 am 
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Year and Trim: 1995 bonneville se L36
My volts slowly dropped yesterday my check gauges light came on and my dropped 2 8V & died. I jump started it and it ran for about 1mile and died again.

Got it towed home and took battery out and had it tested, it was ok but needed charged. It's a 37month old napa legend battery. I had parts store charge it to 100.%

Went out and reinstalled battery and it started up but still only running about 10 11 Volts.

I don't think it has a parasitic load Any where bc battery would be dead in morning if it had a drain anywhere. It has to be alternator right?

Any tips on changing?
Hoping I can just do the 3 alternator bolts and just undo the belt at the top and not bottom pulleys.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:03 pm 
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well, if the car starts and runs for a minute and the check charging system message/symbol appears, yes, I would lean towards the alt.
you can put multimeter on it and see how much its generating - parts store can maybe test it.

yes, undo tensioner and secure the top of belt at the top so the bottom stays put, swap and slip belt on - done.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:05 pm 
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Most parts stores can do a free charging system test, just to be sure. Check for battery voltage at the main connection at the back of the alternator with the key off, and confirm that matches what you are getting at the battery. Also check it with the car running.

Also, are you just going by the gauge on the dash, or are you checking it with a Multimeter?

I am not sure of the configuration of a '95, but I know it's dead easy on Series 1. It's just a matter of pulling tension off the belt, sliding it off of the alternator pulley, and then releasing the tensioner.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:07 pm 
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Also, don't buy a replacement without first having it bench tested.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 1:53 pm 
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Year and Trim: 1995 bonneville se L36
Question: How do I remove the 3rd bolt on alternator? Not the top 2 but the bolt under the belt tensioner pulley I think.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 4:37 pm 
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I am not familiar with '95, but if only the pulley is in the way, the pulley can be easily unbolted, which it should be checked when the belt is off anyway. You would simply crank it in the opposite direction you would if you were loosening the belt (it may be left hand threaded)

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 6:35 pm 
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You should only need an extension.

Check your battery power and ground wiring/connections too. Corrosion can make its way up and under the insulation.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 7:17 pm 
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can you move the tensioner to the loose position and seethe bolt? get a helper to hold it there and remove bolt

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 3:20 pm 
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I got alternator off but I couldn't release tension on belt thru tensioner, I unbolted pulley & kinda popped belt free. I'm going 2 have it bench tested.

Any tips on reinstalling? Could tensioner be locked up? I couldn't get belt 2 release. I tight end 15mm tensioner bolt tight as I could, felt like it could strip. Should I try a breAker bar instead of ratchet?


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 3:36 pm 
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yeah, it can get pretty stiff - you need a breaker bar like extension (i use a 2 foot pipe and put it on the end of the rachet - it should move freely then.
be sure you secure the tensioner bolts before you do this.

so you push pulley towards the firewall which loosens the belt.

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Last edited by 96 SSEi on Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 5:03 pm 
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Secure? Just tighten them?

The tensioner pulley has the paint peeled off the smooth surface in shape of belt & should I chAnge belt? I zip tied belt 2 a.c. condenser line 4 now.

I heard removal of tensioner or not I mount 2 change serp. belt


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:12 pm 
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yes, fasten them properly so the tensioner is secure.

IF it moves freely with no play/squeaks, and the belt rides straight, its good to go.

up to you about belt, if its looking good, you can keep it. or you can replace and keep the old one as a spare.

sorry, I dont understand the next line in your post.

and if the belt gets messed up, just remember the GOLDEN RULE of belts:
smooth side mates with smooth pulleys and ribbed to ribbed pulleys

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:39 pm 
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Is removal of r&r belt hard? I heard you had 2 do removal of tensioner 2 feed belt thru or some kind of snafu with the new belt installation?


Thanks everyone I been hunting for an alternator I got 1 from O'Reilly should be here tmrw or Wed.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:57 pm 
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no, if you got the tools and experience, its 2 minute job if all is well.install is maybe 5 minutes cause you got to route it properly to pulleys.

did you get the tensioner to move?

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 11:48 pm 
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Looked more difficult, looked like belt was held in by something, motor mount.

If no.cracks in belt its good right I know it's hard to tell I think

Also is there an indicator for tension

Also haven't tried on tensioner since no alt yet


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2017 1:41 am 
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614justin wrote:
Looked more difficult, looked like belt was held in by something, motor mount.

If no.cracks in belt its good right I know it's hard to tell I think

Also is there an indicator for tension

Also haven't tried on tensioner since no alt yet


oh yeah, I remember my 96, you can get the belt off pullies easy but replacement is a pain - the mount bolt will have to be backed out to get the new belt installed, I put another belt in there with zip ties cause its a pain -

you have to support the subframe with a jack directly under the mount- be careful - you only need the to clear the thickness of the belt and slip it through.

no, if the tensioner works, you cant get the belt on or off without using a rachet - it could be seized, but I only seen that on *shoot* chrystler tensioners

dont wait for alt - get it ready so install is easy

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poverty forces one to do unorthodox things

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past rides:
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1987 Grand Am


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2017 11:24 am 
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I know this sounds silly, but make sure you are using the bolt at the center of the tensioner pulley, and not the tensioner itself to loosen and tighten belt tension. For me, it's doable with a ratchet, but it may not be for others. It's pretty easy with a 12" breaker bar.

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1990 Oldsmobile 88 - Gone to a better place


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:36 pm 
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I only see 1 bolt on tensioner. It's thru tensioner pulley.

There's a hole next to it.

Would it be a hex or star bit instead?

I tried it w a 15mm wrench also lol

Would any sae sizes fit or should I just but a 15mm?

I haven't been under the hood since alternator wasn't here till tmrw


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:32 am 
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here is a pirates map...https://www.justanswer.com/car/0qs4s-ch ... ntiac.html

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:04 pm 
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Year and Trim: 1995 bonneville se L36
I got new alternator put on, all bolted back up. I put some dielectric grease on alternator power bolt and on battery terminals.

Volts on dash gauge are reading 12v but not check lights come on. Would dielectric grease hurt? My voltmeter broke and don't have 1

Nevermind lol I didn't have pigtail connector plugged bAck into into it. Started it back up and went right to 14v.

Thanks again.
Until next time.


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