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Hi all.
My 84 Rabbit is now on its 4th alternator in 3 years. The first two came from Napa and the last two came from Autozone. I'm just curious if anyone else has had bad luck with alternators. All of my wiring checks out good. With all of my accessories on I'm pulling less than 40amps on a 65 amp alternator so I don't believe I am over loading it. My battery is new. I kind of bevieve that I'm just getting junl alternators. The Napa alternators were stator failures and the autozone alternators were regulator failures.

Just looking for a little insight is all. Thanks Guys
 

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Buy a genuine Bosch reman and forget about it for 4-8 years.

Those rebuilds at the box stores sell the lowest common denominator. Parts made in China, Taiwan, etc. They usually just replace the bearings and the regulator, and then paint it. They rarely replace the diode or stator it needed.

Bosch remans cost about as much at the crappy box-chains too: about $80-100.
 

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Check the classifieds and buy someones used Bosch. Take it to a reputable auto-electric shop (every town has one...) and have them refurbish it for you. You may also have them check your electrical system to ensure that nothing evil is hiding in the wires waiting to destroy your nice, rebuilt alternator.
 

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Hi all.
My 84 Rabbit is now on its 4th alternator in 3 years.
That does seem excessive. Make sure your alternator wiring is not corroded and that it has good ground. Make sure the battery connectors are not corroded. I use the anti-corrosive felt pads under my terminals.

If you still have the stock right angle molded rubber alternator plug, be advised that it is very susceptible to corrosion. They can be given some extra life by cleaning the terminals with a dental pick or something similar, then using some silicone grease to protect them from further corrosion.

Another warning is, never disconnect a running alternator from its harness to test it; test it with the harness intact. You may already know this, just mentioning it.

There is a lot of rebuilt junk out there, starters especially.

If you could find a new alternator, I would do that, especially since you have had so much trouble. GAP was selling new ones about two years ago. You would need to measure the pulley offset and check with them to see if it is a match.

If you have to get a rebuilt unit, then I would suggest a Bosch reman.

The problem with coils of wire, such as on starters and alternators, is that the resistance in the coil can change with humidity and heat. Over time, small cracks develop in the insulation varnish. These may pass resistance tests in certain conditions, but may behave differently in damp weather or when hot.

Also, with those old cast aluminum housings, there can be aluminum corrosion around the diode bridge that may cause current leakage when humidity is high. I always clean-up those areas if I have one apart, not sure a rebuilt is going to get the same level of attention.
 
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