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Bear with me, there's a few pages here...
 

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Needless to say, Nissan has procedures to check your alternator, that should be able to give them an early warning on failure. If you don't feel comfortable doing it yourself (much of it, doesn't need the special tool), ask them to test it, if you think you might be on your way to a problem.
 

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Wheepee!

Definitely sticky... :)



Nizmo
 

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OK, you twisted my arm.... Sticky it shall be.:)
 

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Just wanted to add that it is NOT covered under warranty (unless you have a cool dealer) for checks and inspections if there is no evidence of problems beforehand. They may charge you for it, but if you really feel that your alternator is in danger, then I suppose you can get it done.

In 1999, the alternator in my 1997 Maxima started making a whining noise. Took it to the dealer who reported nothing seemed unusual (indeed the noise was gone) and I had to DISPUTE the diagnostic fee they charged me on the bill. Drove it home and the next evening the noise came back and charge light came on. Alternator was replaced under warranty and the only thing the dealer could tell me was that "these parts are unpredictable, they are man made and will fail."

All I am saying is don't be surprised if the dealer tries to charge you for an inspection. They shouldn't, since its a chance for them to find things wrong with your car and hose you on the repair. But we all know how Nissan dealers view "customer service."
 

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Well, we still don't know if there is a single point of failure.
And if there is, does it die a slow death that could possibly be found in a diagnostic, or does it just short out instantaneously, in which case it won't show up on a diagnostic.

I lean toward the latter as I look at the test procedure.
I was hoping to see a load tester that would read out Amps.
Don't know what the Murano is speced at, but Nissan does, and if it is a 100 Amp alternator that is putting out 60 AMPs into a full load, you may have yourself an early indication.

Homer
 

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It's spec'd in the Service Manual, but I'm not at that PC so I can't pull it up.

I'd rather fight with the dealer for 10 minutes than have to find a tow truck in the middle of the night on some distant highway.

Might be good to put together a version of this diagnostic process using a common multimeter. The automated system Nissan uses, just compares known voltage ranges over time to what's measured and gives an idiot display to the tech.

For example, excess ripple is a result of failing diodes, I would expect. Whereas other voltage problems could be the regulator.

Both items are separate from each other, but built into the alternator, as the SM shows them as distinct items in the exploded diagram. I haven't looked to see if they're replaceable without removing the alternator. In fact, I haven't even looked to see where the alternator is, under the hood!

I haven't had the time to distill a simple test procedure, so if someone else wants to give a shot, go for it!
 

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Can a low battery affect the alternator in such a way to eventually cause a failure? Just wondering, especially since the Murano's battery is not "maintenance free".
 

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I regularly maintained my battery and my alternator still failed. I don't think it is the cause, but not a bad idea!
 

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How about if the battery is not holding a charge sufficently even if maintained properly. Does this put an extra burden on the alternator which could reduce its life?
 

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zofsuvs said:
How about if the battery is not holding a charge sufficently even if maintained properly. Does this put an extra burden on the alternator which could reduce its life?

Despite the fact that the Murano's battery is the maintenance type, its not a terrible battery. Unless you've been driving a lot of short trips, I don't think the battery would drain over time. I suppose a weak battery could strain the alternator, but you would feel the weak battery in the form of slower starts.
 

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Hmm. Since people have not typically been reporting trouble at start-ups, I guess the battery's not the cause.
 

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Down here where the temps are high we are glad to get a maintance battery. YOU CAN ADD water. Lack of water is the number one killer here and high temps evaporate water faster, having caps is great. GRIP :D
 
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