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Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo???

945 Views 9 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  hammerjetta1.8t
Well, I've done the searches and read all about the "Alternator Workshop" warning that flashes.
Symptoms are:
1. No light on when stereo is off
2. When stereo is running at normal volume - 50/50 chance of AW warning msg
3. At higher volumes 90/10 chance of AW warning msg
4. No difference between high rpms and low rpms
5. Possible stereo amplifier drawing too many amps - shutting off due to overheating. Having the unit checked for amp draw.
Questions I have are:
1. Would an Aftermarket stereo - 1500W RMS (between sub and components) kill the alternator in 85k miles?
2. How can I tell if its the battery or the alternator or something else that needs to be checked?
3. What is the "Voltage Regulator" that I've seen online? Is this related?
4. Where can I find a re-man alternator? Any suggestions? I've seen 120 AMP units. What is the factory unit rated at - 90 Amp??
5. Does anyone have the VW Part # for the factory unit?
6. How do I check the belt driving the alternator?
Thanks for everyone's comments in advance.
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Re: Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo??? (hammerjetta1.8t)

bump - anyone have any thoughts, comments, suggestions?
Re: Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo??? (hammerjetta1.8t)

bump - anyone? anyone???
I know this is off topic, but what system do you have thats actually pulling 1500 watts RMS. If you do I'm surprised you didn't get another battery or upgrade your alternator.
But if you are running that much, yeah I wouldn't doubt that it would die on you.
Re: Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo??? (hammerjetta1.8t)

if your system is pulling 1500 rms, thats well over 100 amps that its pulling, make sure that all your wires are tight down, get a new battery, hopefully you have at least a 2 farad cap, and then change your alternator
Re: Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo??? (pccompuman)

the amps are rated at 1000 W RMS - mono amp for the sub and 500 W RMS for the 4 channel - 4 x 125 W/channel. That is at 100% full load, which I'm not running at. I'd be deaf in the car. But I'd say it would be close to 70% at times with the volume cranked.
Checked all the wires - everything is tight. Wondering if the CAP is weak due to 5 yrs of use. How would i check that?
ALT and VR checked out ok - charging at 14.43 V with no load and 14.3 V with load (fans, A/C, windows opening/closing, etc). Only when the stereo kicks on is there a major drop in voltage - to 12.5 V. Knock on wood - no issues this week. But i'm not going to walk away yet.
Any help and tips - still appreciated
Re: Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo??? (hammerjetta1.8t)

i use to have a 10"w7 hooked up to a 1000/1 jl audio amp + 600 watt 4 channel amp hooked up to my inside speakers and a 1 farad cap..... killed my alternator to all hell, infact everything was turned down all the way and it was still super loud but if i turned the bass up really loud i could actually shut my car off while driving.... your gonna need like a 120 amp alternator and prob 2 red or yellow cap batteries =D
Re: Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo??? (pereira88)

alternator is 120Amp - factory. Checked today based on the VIN #. I have not yet experienced a high enough drain to shut the car off - again, the amps are probably at 90% full power and then I don't turn the volume up all the way either. So its probably only a 70% load out of the maximum power available.
I think next spring or maybe this fall, I'll look at a new battery to replace the OEM one.
Again, no warnings in 2 weeks since I've had the Alternator and Volt Reg checked. I wonder if the dealer tightened anything that may have been an issue. *Fingers crossed*
Re: Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo??? (hammerjetta1.8t)

I have been looking around at high output alternators and the best that I can find so far is "Arragi alternators" on ebay. Looked around here on the tex for good hight output alternators and he seems to be the best I could find with good feedback and quality. If I recall correctly it was about $400 for a 220 amp alternator for my 03 1.8t. I would recommend a high capacity heavy load battery and an extra battery in the trunk, skip the cap. But most importantly you need a high output alternator to avoid future issues.
Re: Alternator Workshop and aftermarket car stereo??? (Trumpster)

Got a quote from Irragi alternators and spoke to a local dubber who upgraded with one - good product at a good price. A 220A high output unit is around $450 - considering the dealer wants that for a stock unit - I think I can justify the money for a better unit when the alternator finally craps out. Just want it to hold together for a little while longer is all. Hopefully it will get me 2 more years. *fingers crossed*
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