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Skyvisions
Skyvisions, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Lexus
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Experience:  Lexus Expert
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Will leaking fluids damage the alternator in my 98 Lexus GS

Resolved Question:

Will leaking fluids damage the alternator in my '98 Lexus GS 400?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Lexus
Expert:  Skyvisions replied 6 years ago.
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Skyvisions :

Thank you for choosing JustAnswer and allowing me to help you resolve your Lexus questions!

JACUSTOMER-7u2bmf9d- :

I'm wondering if oil would damage an alternator. It doesn't conduct electricity.

JACUSTOMER-7u2bmf9d- :

I'm thinking of replacing my bad alternator in hopes that any other leaking parts won't kill it for awhile.

Skyvisions :

Oil will damage the alternator and cause it to not charge this was a real serious problem on some of the Lexus engines. Engine oil will conduct electricity and short things out in the alternator.

Skyvisions :

Usually it comes from the valve covers is the most common leak

JACUSTOMER-7u2bmf9d- :

Bummer. How quickly will it ruin a replacement alternator?

JACUSTOMER-7u2bmf9d- :

My '98 GS 400 isn't worth $4,000 for an alternator, Cam Seal, and Power Steering pump.

Skyvisions :

It depends on how bad the oil is dripping or running down my guess would be six months to a year.

Skyvisions :

If the oil that is leaking onto the old alternator appears to be old and there are no direct gushers dripping or leaking onto the alternator and you're talking about general residual oil you may get as much as two years.

JACUSTOMER-7u2bmf9d- :

Ah. And would the power steering pump leak into the alternator?

Skyvisions :

The power steering pump does sit directly over top of the alternator if the line for the check valve or the seal on the reservoir is leaking it will directly affect the alternator especially if you're having to add large amounts of power steering fluid on a regular basis.

JACUSTOMER-7u2bmf9d- :

I'll check how fast those fluids are leaking. But I haven't had to refill either.

JACUSTOMER-7u2bmf9d- :

I think I'm good. Thanks.

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