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What amperage alternator

This is a discussion on What amperage alternator within the Technical / Maintenance forums, part of the General Discussion category; I have a 96 k1500 Lt suburban loaded out with 350 vortec and I was told it should be a ...

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    What amperage alternator


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    I have a 96 k1500 Lt suburban loaded out with 350 vortec and I was told it should be a 140 amp alternator in there. Went to replace my alternator(amp gauge was showing low charging with all accessories on) with a new 140 amp alternator and where the plug snaps in is different. On the truck side the plug is rounded on the ends and the new alternators needs a square ended plug. The alternator that was in there was only a 105 amp alternator(cheap basturd put a used junkyard one in there that didnt fit it). So the only other alternator choices is a 105 or 124 amp. Any insight from the pros.

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    Re: What amperage alternator

    You can check the RPO code #'s in your glovebox to find out what it came with from the factory. My guess is it came with a 105amp.
    There's a 'Ultimate RPO database' sticky on the technical page.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Mine has the amperage stamped on the case. RW

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    Re: What amperage alternator

    My 94 has power everything, dual a/c, etc. It came stock with a 105 amp. The only stock 140's that I've heard about came in Pontiac Transports with rear a/c and some luxo-barges from Caddy and Buick.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    BTW, here's a link to swapping in a 140 amp:

    http://tech.oldsgmail.com/echa_140a.html

    There's a part number in the article for an adapter harness to connect the 140 amp model.
    Last edited by HarryH3; 01-30-2008 at 07:15 AM.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    My LT Tahoe (power seats, rear A/C, etc) came with a factory 105amp alt (stamped on the case). When I replaced it, I installed a 220a high-output alt from Dominick Iraggi. I've not had any charging problems since then.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    I tried to put a 140 amp in my 96, it wouldn't even fit in the mount
    Last edited by intimidator4x4; 01-30-2008 at 06:00 PM.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    In my old 1998 I had the 140 amp alternator. Truck came with a snowplow on it and dual batteries. Most of the other trucks I've seen including suburbans was a single battery with 105 amp alternator.

    Most of the 105 amp I've see has a plastic backing, where the 140 amp comes with a metal backing.
    Last edited by justy; 01-30-2008 at 10:18 PM.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    stock 140s i belive came in tahoes and sub with heated seats and ive heard the plug is different and mounting is a little diffrent the factory 140s have a different fan on them, checked at autozone and the said they have a 145 amp for about a 160 bucks should be a drop in not sure yet but i need to do something soon mine is squealling alot latley

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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Seems to me a longtime ago. I did see a upgrade kit to accept a 140 amp on summitracing.com. Or a option for a higher output alternator. I think it came with brackets and some other misc stuff. Might want to browse and check that out. I know a few people on here do the big 3 alot. Usually the people with big amps and stereos. So maybe they would know a cheap route.
    Last edited by justy; 01-31-2008 at 01:08 AM.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    You can buy the pigtail and swap the plug. I did it when I went to a 200 amper from Powermaster. No problem.

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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Quote Originally Posted by intimidator4x4
    I tried to put a 140 amp in my 96, it wouldn't even fit in the mount
    It should. Did you try talking nicely to it?

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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Thanks guys, for all the info. Probably just buy the adapter for the alternator.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    My 2000 tahoe with heated seats came with a 140amp alt.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Quote Originally Posted by S/C Z71
    It should. Did you try talking nicely to it?
    It was way bigger than the one I had, or the guy at Autozone brought out the wrong one
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Mine is a little bigger than the stocker but it fit.

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    Re: What amperage alternator

    My '96 Tahoe (5.7 vortec) came factory with the 105 amp...back in the summer I switched it out to the 140amp...I got the plug from a '95 Suburban at the junkyard (most trucks '95 and back have this plug also)...just cut the old one off and spliced in the new one...the back brace/bracket won't work with the 140 amp, so I just left it off...the 2 main bolts that go through the alternator and the front engine bracket are plenty sturdy enough, IMO...one thing you may have to do is push the spacer sleeves that are in the holes in the engine bracket out a little to get the alternator to slide in there...it's really a bolt in swap...I would recommend upgrading your cables to at least 8 gauge (I went with 4) when you do this...you'll alos need a longer belt...don't buy one at Autozone either, I've bought alternators from them before for several vehicles and they always crapped out on me...I'll never waste my money on any major items from them again...

    I'm running Hella off road lights, Taurus electric fan, Infinity 611a amp, and a compressor for my train horns and it pulls the gauge down some with everything running at once but nothing like it did with the stock 105 on there...

    The guys at the Napa where I bought it told me it wouldn't fit and I had to argue with them to order it for me...when I got it installed I wanted to drive down there and show them how stupid they were...I wish I could get pics up but I've lost the cable that runs to the computer and can't download any right now...let me know if you need anymore answers about the swap...
    Last edited by rusted_shut; 02-01-2008 at 12:08 AM.

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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Quote Originally Posted by FUCTUP
    the back brace/bracket won't work with the 140 amp, so I just left it off...the 2 main bolts that go through the alternator and the front engine bracket are plenty sturdy enough, IMO...
    Have you watched the alternator closely to see if it has any vibrations with that bracket missing? I had to replace an alternator on my 4.3 S-10 while out in the mountains of Colorado (bearing seized and locked up the alternator). The only replacement available within a reasonable distance was not clocked properly for my setup, but it fit and worked otherwise. I had to leave the back bracket off until I had time to pull the alternator apart and re-index the back half of the housing. I noticed that without the back bracket the alternator would get a pretty violent vibration occasionally, as if some harmonic was building up and shaking it for a few seconds. I only happened a couple of times per minute at idle, but I was concerned that the vibration could eventually fatigue the main aluminum bracket to the point of failure. Once I re-installed the back bracket, that vibration was gone...

    It might be worthwhile to fab up a bracket to fit your new setup.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Has anyone tried the Iceberg 140 amp upgrade kit? I wonder how reliable it is and if it increases output at idle. My 105 amp keeps up with both a/c units running on high, the high beams and the Hella driving lights, but only above idle. Voltage drops off at idle, but then jumps right back up as soon as the RPM goes above 900 or so. Having more output at idle would be awesome.
    Last edited by HarryH3; 02-01-2008 at 07:41 AM.
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    Re: What amperage alternator

    Quote Originally Posted by HarryH3
    Have you watched the alternator closely to see if it has any vibrations with that bracket missing? I had to replace an alternator on my 4.3 S-10 while out in the mountains of Colorado (bearing seized and locked up the alternator). The only replacement available within a reasonable distance was not clocked properly for my setup, but it fit and worked otherwise. I had to leave the back bracket off until I had time to pull the alternator apart and re-index the back half of the housing. I noticed that without the back bracket the alternator would get a pretty violent vibration occasionally, as if some harmonic was building up and shaking it for a few seconds. I only happened a couple of times per minute at idle, but I was concerned that the vibration could eventually fatigue the main aluminum bracket to the point of failure. Once I re-installed the back bracket, that vibration was gone...

    It might be worthwhile to fab up a bracket to fit your new setup.
    Yes I've watched it and there's no way there's a chance for vibration...it's sandwiched in between the mounting ears that are 3/8 to 1/2 inch thick on both sides..the bracket I removed bolts to the back of the alternator at the bottom of the housing and you can order one from the dealer to replace the old one, but I've got around 10,000 miles on there with zero issues...even a trip to Wisconsin and back (from TN) in Sept...

 

 
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