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Grdinding and smoke for the alternator?

12077 Views 30 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  Ridgedave
I will try to make this short. 2009 Ridgeline, 60K miles
1. Get in car and it is DEAD. No clicks or anything.
2. Jump starts in 2 secs. Surprising seeing as it was DEAD.
3. Starts to make a grinding noise, almost like metal on metal, but with some smoke and electrical type smell. Looks like it is coming from the alternator area.
4. Have it towed to local garage, not a Honda dealer. He says it was a shorted battery. I explain about grinding noise and smoke and he says he had it running for 30 min and no issues.
5. Drive it for a week and no issues. Then yesterday the noise starts again so park it and take wife's car on our trip instead.

A. Anybody experience this before?
B. Any suggestions on what I can check myself?
C. Think it might be best to take it to the dealer this time?

The local garage is reasonable and has always been good to me, but I need to get this fixed and be sure it won't fail me when on a trip.
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Here's a link for a reman'd Denso alternator for $184 after core charge is refunded. Buy it, have your shop put it on and give you the old alternator back so you can get your core charge back. The grinding noise means something has been knocked loose in the alternator itself. The smoke means that something has created enough friction to create a lot of heat. I'd replace the alternator asap. The Denso model is the OEM part, but I don't think there's any harm in going with the Pure Energy or USA Industries model if you want to save $40-50 or so. Personally, I'd just go with the Denso. Apparently the alternator was changed for the 09+ models because the 06-08 Denso alt is only $126. It's also got a different part number.
I'm glad the problem seems to have been found and fixed. Any indication of what the grinding noise could have been?
Definitely interesting. I've never experienced this issue at all, but I'm wondering if I should just get a new relay and replace mine. Seems to be preventative maintenance if anything. $25 isn't a bad price to prevent this from happening.
Anyone (from above?)

Do I need to get my A/C checked out? I have no idea if I vented a small amount of coolant that's no issue, or if I'm looking at destroying my system from lack of coolant. If anyone has a guess, I'm listening...

If you're not experiencing any issues with the system functioning properly or failing to blow cold air, I would say you're fine. You could always have the system recharged if you'd like, but it may just be $100+ that you don't have to spend. Just my two cents and not an expert opinion...
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