The alternator is one of the 3 basic components of your vehicle’s electrical system. Since it is at the core of your vehicle, it needs to be kept at its top condition at all times for a safe and smooth ride. Although it may look like the battery handles all the work when it comes to powering your vehicle, it is actually the alternator that keeps the engine running.
The battery only works when the car’s engine is off until you start it. It provides power to the engine for only a short time after start-up, and then the alternator will take over and keep it running. Although it might sound a little bit complicated to maintain an alternator, it is actually possible to do it by yourself as long as you know how to handle it properly. Here are the steps you should do in order to keep the alternator in its top condition.
Keep it Clean
Just like the other parts of your vehicle, an OEX alternator also needs to be kept clean regularly to maintain its optimum performance. Once the alternator has plenty of accumulated dust, dirt, and even debris, it gets overheated easily which slows it down eventually. It can cause damage to the alternator when left unattended. Check the alternator regularly and clean it immediately using a soft cloth when you see signs of dirt accumulating.
Select the Right Kind of Belt
An alternator has a belt that helps it keep the engine running continuously. The belt is made from rubber and would crack, fray, and get damaged through time with longer use. It is recommended that you replace the belt with a new one between 40,000 to 70,000 miles, depending on if it looks like it needs to be replaced. Inspect the belt regularly to detect signs of damage early on. When you spot issues such as cracks and other signs of damage, fix or replace it immediately to prevent it from causing damage to your engine.
Keep Them Properly Aligned
As you drive, it can’t be avoided that some parts get misaligned a little bit due to jostling at the road. When the pulleys get misaligned, your car’s engine will find it harder to function more efficiently. You can simply check it, especially after a very bumpy ride to be sure that all are perfectly in place. Aside from regular driving, these parts can also get misaligned because of frayed edges, small tears and cracks, and a lot more. Be sure to keep them aligned properly for a better driving experience.
Minor alternator repairs can actually be done at home when you know how your vehicle completely works. It helps a lot when you spend some time in learning and knowing your vehicle more to properly care and maintain it. However, if your vehicle needs either a minor or major alternator repair yet you’re not sure how to do it, take your vehicle instead to a professional mechanic and get it fixed.