Replaced alternator, now engine won't start



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Thread: Replaced alternator, now engine won't start

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    Unhappy Replaced alternator, now engine won't start

    2003 T&C 3.3 Flex Fuel. Bad noise from the decoupler pulley on the alternator. Decided to get a rebuilt alternator from NAPA. Just got it put on, and now the engine won't start.

    I followed the Haynes manual with removing negative battery cable. Removed the belt then the electrical connectors. I swear I touched nothing else. Engine started and ran fine on the old alternator, just noisy. Now it cranks, but won't fire. NAPA says it can't be a bad alternator if it's cranking. Is he blowing smoke?

    I'm scratching my head. Any thoughts? I'm not a mechanic but have replaced a few alternators in my day, but nothing like this ever happened.

    --Randy
    _____________________________________
    2003 Chrysler Town & Country 3.3 Flex Fuel

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    Quote Originally Posted by rmaxey View Post
    2003 T&C 3.3 Flex Fuel. Bad noise from the decoupler pulley on the alternator. Decided to get a rebuilt alternator from NAPA. Just got it put on, and now the engine won't start.

    I followed the Haynes manual with removing negative battery cable. Removed the belt then the electrical connectors. I swear I touched nothing else. Engine started and ran fine on the old alternator, just noisy. Now it cranks, but won't fire. NAPA says it can't be a bad alternator if it's cranking. Is he blowing smoke?

    I'm scratching my head. Any thoughts? I'm not a mechanic but have replaced a few alternators in my day, but nothing like this ever happened.

    --Randy
    You said you took off the belt but you didn't say you put it back on. JK If there's enough juice in the battery, it will crank with no alternator at all, let alone a bad one. I don't know much about these things, but I would remove the alternator and take it to a competitor for a free test.
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    Power is certainly getting to the starter from the battery. Any other red wires at the battery than need to be connected? Interior lights working?
    Did anybody pull any fuses when doing the work?
    Have you checked for spark?
    2007 GC SXT - Magnesium - S&G - 3.8L - 112,920 kms
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    I've double-checked all my wire connections that I could see. Just checked for spark. I got no spark. Now what? Yep, lights are working.

    --Randy
    _____________________________________
    2003 Chrysler Town & Country 3.3 Flex Fuel

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    Did you check to see if all the fuses are still ok? If everything's fine there, then maybe have a helper crank while you push/pull the wires, especially in the area of the famous melting wiring harness.
    03 Caravan 3.3L 159K miles
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    Whenever something like that happens to me, I just start backtracking. I would suggest removing the Alternator and checking everything. Perhaps you pulled off the crank sensor wire or loosened some other wire. Having replaced my alternator a few months ago, I can easily see a possibility of accidently pulling a wrong wire. Yes, even with a bad alternator, the engine should still start, so I don't think it is the alternator. Heck, you could run the engine without the alternator if you wanted. Just go back, double check everything. I remember once helping a friend in a similar situation and he had the battery cables hooked up backwards.
    2005 Town & Country Limited

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    Check the ground straps too. There's one on the motor mount on that side of the engine. Could have broken it off.
    2002 Town & Country Limited 150K
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    On older alternators, if the CHARGE or BATTERY light doesn't illuminate at key-on, the alternator won't work.

    Just as a WAG, I'd try re-seating the pins on the IPM (between the battery and LF fender). That's quick and easy...

    Another WAG with the electronics: disconnect the battery ground cable for 30 minutes or so, might reset something.
    Atwell "Buff" Haines
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    Well, gents, I tried everything and ended up calling the tow truck. It's gonna' take someone with more experience than me plus the right testing equipment. I'm just afraid of the dollar signs. <sigh>

    I'll reply back here when I get it tracked down.

    Thanks for all your suggestions!

    --Randy
    _____________________________________
    2003 Chrysler Town & Country 3.3 Flex Fuel

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    I should add that I about had heart failure during this little adventure. I thought I'd be smart and apply a little dielectric grease to all the cable connections to protect from dirt and moisture. The two-wire connector to the alternator goes to the PCM. I though perhaps using the grease may have shorted out the PCM, but I learned that dielectric grease isn't conductive (thus the name, duh!) and shouldn't be the culprit.

    Still waiting to hear from the mechanic. Does stuff like this really cook your grits like it does mine? Sheeesh!
    _____________________________________
    2003 Chrysler Town & Country 3.3 Flex Fuel

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