Looking For Help. Wiring A 3g Alt On A Fox Body

DOUGHBOYSFAST

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Aug 12, 2016
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I have been doing quite a bit of research and I know this has been covered at length but I have tried everything and I still cant get my alt. to charge..

quick run down the car is a 88 gt that has been converted to Carb. and the ecu and harness has been REMOVED not sure if this is would have anything to do with it but I doubt it..

the engine is a standard 302 with a little bit of work done. I got the car in trade so needless to say I have been chasing things on this car since the beginning,, I have taken the alt. in to have it tested at 2 different parts stores both say it is good..

the only thing I have NOT done is changed the pulley diameter on the alternator to the smaller size..

I have ran the 4 gauge wire to the starter solenoid, I have checked all my ground wires and even added an additional 4 gauge ground from the battery to the body of the car...

ANY HELP WOULD REALLY BE APPRECIATED, I AM NOW OFFICIALLY LOST AND NOT SURE WHAT MY NEXT MOVE IS!!
 
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jrichker

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Alternator troubleshooting for 86-93 5.0 Mustangs:

Never, never disconnect an alternator from the battery with the engine running. The resulting voltage spike can damage the car's electronics including the alternator.



Revised 15 April 2012 to add simple check for regulator failure in Engine off ignition on, battery fully charged section, item 2.

Red color text applies to cars with a 3G alternator.

Do all of these tests in sequence. Do not skip around. The results of each test depend on the results of the previous tests for correct interpretation.

Simple first step: Remove the alternator and take it to your local auto parts store. They can bench test it for free.


Use a safety pin to pierce and probe the insulated connectors from the rear when doing tests with the connector plugged into its' mating connector.

Engine off, ignition off, battery fully charged.
1.) Look for 12 volts at the alternator output. No 12 volts and the dark green fuse link between the orange/black wires and the battery side of the starter solenoid has open circuited.
3G alternator: Look for 12 volts at the stud on the back of the alternator where the 4 gauge power feed wire is bolted.
No voltage and the fuse for the 4 gauge power feed wire is open or there are some loose connections.

2.) Look for 12 volts on the yellow/white wire that is the power feed to the regulator. No 12 volts, and the fuse link for the yellow/white wire has open circuited.

Engine off, ignition on, battery fully charged:
1.) Alternator warning light should glow. No glow, bulb has burned out or there is a break in the wiring between the regulator plug and the dash. The warning light supplies an exciter voltage that tells the regulator to turn on. There is a 500 ohm resistor in parallel with the warning light so that if the bulb burns out, the regulator still gets the exciter voltage.
Disconnect the D connector with the 3 wires (yellow/white, white/black and green/red) from the voltage regulator.
Measure the voltage on the Lt green/red wire. It should be 12 volts. No 12 volts and the wire is broken, or the 500 ohm resistor and dash indicator lamp are bad. If the 12 volts is missing, replace the warning lamp. If after replacing the warning lamp, the test fails again, the wiring between the warning lamp and the alternator is faulty. The warning lamp circuit is part of the instrument panel and contains some connectors that may cause problems.

2.) Reconnect the D plug to the alternator
Probe the green/red wire from the rear of the connector and use the battery negative post as a ground. You should see 2.4-2.6 volts. No voltage and the previous tests passed, you have a failed voltage regulator. This is an actual measurement taken from a car with a working electrical system. If you see full or almost full12 volts, the regulator has failed.

Engine on, Ignition on, battery fully charged:
Probe the green/red wire from the rear of the connector and use the battery negative post as a ground. You should see battery voltage minus .25 to 1.0 volt. If the battery measured across the battery is 15.25 volts, you should see 14.50 volts

Familiarize yourself with the following application note from Fluke: See http://assets.fluke.com/appnotes/automotive/beatbook.pdf for help for help troubleshooting voltage drops across connections and components. .

attachment.php?attachmentid=64167&stc=1&d=1286329941.gif

You will need to do some voltage drop testing of several of the wires.

Start looking for these things:
1.) Bad diode(s) in the alternator - one or more diodes have open circuited and are causing the voltage to drop off as load increases. Remove the alternator and bench test it to confirm or deny this as being the problem.

2.) The secondary power ground is between the back of the intake manifold and the driver's side firewall. It is often missing or loose. It supplies ground for the alternator, A/C compressor clutch and other electrical accessories such as the gauges. Do the voltage drop test as shown in the Fluke tech note link. Measure the voltage drop between the alternator frame and the battery negative post. Watch for an increase in drop as the load increases. Use the Fluke voltage drop figures as guidelines for your decisions.

3.) Bad regulator that does not increase field current as load increases. Remove the alternator and bench test it to confirm or deny this as being the problem.

4.) Bad sense wire - open circuit in sense wiring or high resistance. The yellow/white wire is the voltage sense and power for the field. There is a fuse link embedded in the wiring where it connects to the black/orange wiring that can open up and cause problems. Disconnect the battery negative cable from the battery: this will keep you from making sparks when you do the next step. Then disconnect the yellow/white wire at the alternator and the green fuse link at the starter solenoid/starter relay. Measure the resistance between the alternator end of the yellow/white wire and the green fuse link: you should see less than 1 ohm. Reconnect all the wires when you have completed this step.

5.) Bad power feed wiring from the alternator. Use caution in the next step, since you will need to do it with everything powered up and the engine running. You are going to do the Fluke voltage drop tests on the power feed wiring, fuse links and associated parts. Connect one DMM lead to the battery side of the starter solenoid/starter relay. Carefully probe the backside of the black/orange wire connector where it plugs into the alternator. With the engine off, you should see very little voltage. Start the engine and increase the load on the electrical system. Watch for an increase in drop as the load increases. Use the Fluke voltage drop figures as guidelines for your decisions.


attachment.php?attachmentid=64898&stc=1&d=1292685364.gif


Voltage drops should not exceed the following:
200 mV Wire or cable
300 mV Switch
100 mV Ground
0 mV to <50 mV Sensor Connections
0.0V bolt together connections

Alternator wiring circuit
Notice the green wire connects to a switched power source. The circuit contains a 500 ohm resistor in series between the switched power and the alternator. Connecting it to switched power keeps the regulator from drawing current when the engine is not running. The resistor limits the current flowing through the wire so that a fuse isn't needed if the wire shorts to ground.

Also notice the sense wire connects to the starter solenoid and it is fused. It connects to the starter solenoid so that it can "sense" the voltage drop across the output wiring from the alternator.

Replacement parts:
14 gauge fuse link for stock alternator.

Bussman BP/FL14 Fusible link
AutoZone

Dorman - Conduct-Tite 14 Gauge Fusible Link Wire Part No. 85620
Advance auto parts #85620
Pep Boys - SKU #8637594
 

DOUGHBOYSFAST

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Thank you for the info, I had read this once before but I don't quite follow it. I will admit I don't know a lot about wiring under the hood of a car.. let me ask a more simple question.. this car has under drive pulleys which puts a bigger pulley wheel on the alternator.. would going to a smaller pulley wheel make any difference? should I go back to the stock pulley kit for the car including crank, water pump and alt. pulleys?
 

DOUGHBOYSFAST

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also is there a way or a wiring diagram for me just to rewire the whole alternator?? is the green and red wire just a key on wire that I could wire in? what type of power source does the yellow and white wire need?
 

mikestang63

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Aug 27, 2012
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what exactly is the problem? Not charging?

The wiring is simple
1. power= 4g wire from the post on the alternator to the starter solenoid post opposite of the post (with an inline 150 amp fuse) you connect the battery cable to
2. do not re use the existing power wires from the 2g
3. reuse the stator wire from the 2g
4. reuse the D shaped regulator plug and wiring
5. add an additional 4g ground wire from the block to the chassis

The u/d pullleys should have nothing to do with your problem, although they are in itself useless and should be swapped back for the stock pulleys.
 

90sickfox

I didn't really have an issue with the stink...
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Looks like the yellow wire needs to connect to wherever your power cable connects... ( solenoid, bulkhead, or battery ). The green/red wire can run to it from the ignition switch. The 4ga can be connected to battery, solenoid, or bulkhead. The white/black wire runs out at "D" connector and plugs back into alternator at the little single plug.

If you don't use the proper fuses, or safety devices, you run the risk of burning your car to the ground.

The wire that goes opposite the battery wire on the solenoid is the starter wire. On my car nothing else was on the starter wire side. Everything else went on the same side as the battery cable wire. On the newer mini starter the only thing on that side is the small wire running to my starter solenoid ( on the starter ). Everything else is on the battery cable side. The red/blue wire is still connected to the small post for ignition signal.
 
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DOUGHBOYSFAST

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Mikestang63 - yes its just not charging. I have followed all of the instructions and its not charging..

90sickfox- thanks for answering the question about the green and red wire. that will be my next attempt. I will run that to an ignition on wire and try it. maybe there is a fuse or something blown that I am not catching.
 
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jrichker

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Thank you for the info, I had read this once before but I don't quite follow it. I will admit I don't know a lot about wiring under the hood of a car.. let me ask a more simple question.. this car has under drive pulleys which puts a bigger pulley wheel on the alternator.. would going to a smaller pulley wheel make any difference? should I go back to the stock pulley kit for the car including crank, water pump and alt. pulleys?

Since you have said that you have a low level of proficiency in electrical matters, here's some help before you get started.

Automotive circuits are mostly simple stuff: a power source, a connection path, a control device, a load, and a ground.
The battery/alternator is the positive power source.
The wire and fuses are the connection path.
Control devices are switches, relays and sensors.
A load is a light, motor, solenoid, relay coil or heater element.
In automotive circuits, grounds are the return path so the electrical power can flow from the load to the negative side of the power source.
Electricity flows like water:
Voltage is like pressure,
Current in amps is like volume,
Resistance is like the kink you put in a garden hose to decrease the pressure or volume.
Power is pressure multiplied by volume or voltage multiplied by current (amps)

Digest that, and you just got the first 3 days of Electricity 101.

Use some jumper wires (connection path and ground) to hook up a switch (control device), a battery (power source), a light bulb (load). Now make the light turn on and off with the switch.

That's the electrical lab for the first week of Electricity 101.

For free automotive electrical training, see Automotive Training and Resource Site . I have personally reviewed the material and it is very good. If you are new to automotive electrical troubleshooting, I highly recommend you spend a hour or so going through the material. You'll save at least that much time troubleshooting problems.

If you can't follow the checklist step by step instructions, you indeed have a problem. If you want someone to tell you to go buy this part and bolt it on, it isn't going to happen. Carb conversion cars are famous for having wiring problems because the previous owner didn't understand electricity in the first place. Never, never, never buy an EFI car that was converted to carb unless you are going to strip the car and make it a drag strip only machine and tow it to the racetrack.

Use the checklist I posted to find and fix the problem. You start at the top of the checklist and work your way down. Don't skip any steps or just pick and choose what you want to do. The next step depends on the previous step working OK.

The alternator wiring diagram is there for your assistance. It is basically a copy of the one in the Ford service manual; read it and use it.
 
Last edited:

DOUGHBOYSFAST

Member
Aug 12, 2016
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1
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40
Since you have said that you have a low level of proficiency in electrical matters, here's some help before you get started.

Automotive circuits are mostly simple stuff: a power source, a connection path, a control device, a load, and a ground.
The battery/alternator is the positive power source.
The wire and fuses are the connection path.
Control devices are switches, relays and sensors.
A load is a light, motor, solenoid, relay coil or heater element.
In automotive circuits, grounds are the return path so the electrical power can flow from the load to the negative side of the power source.
Electricity flows like water:
Voltage is like pressure,
Current in amps is like volume,
Resistance is like the kink you put in a garden hose to decrease the pressure or volume.
Power is pressure multiplied by volume or voltage multiplied by current (amps)

Digest that, and you just got the first 3 days of Electricity 101.

Use some jumper wires (connection path and ground) to hook up a switch (control device), a battery (power source), a light bulb (load). Now make the light turn on and off with the switch.

That's the electrical lab for the first week of Electricity 101.

For free automotive electrical training, see Automotive Training and Resource Site . I have personally reviewed the material and it is very good. If you are new to automotive electrical troubleshooting, I highly recommend you spend a hour or so going through the material. You'll save at least that much time troubleshooting problems.

If you can't follow the checklist step by step instructions, you indeed have a problem. If you want someone to tell you to go buy this part and bolt it on, it isn't going to happen. Carb conversion cars are famous for having wiring problems because the previous owner didn't understand electricity in the first place. Never, never, never buy an EFI car that was converted to carb unless you are going to strip the car and make it a drag strip only machine and tow it to the racetrack.

Use the checklist I posted to find and fix the problem. You start at the top of the checklist and work your way down. Don't skip any steps or just pick and choose what you want to do. The next step depends on the previous step working OK.

The alternator wiring diagram is there for your assistance. It is basically a copy of the one in the Ford service manual; read it and use it.



Thank you very much for the advise and checklist.. I wish I would have known the issue of the efi cars that have been converted to carb. but that's the platform I have to work with so I will make it work... I really appreciate your help and advise!