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Mike V.
Mike V., Nissan Technician
Category: Nissan
Satisfied Customers: 25184
Experience:  Nissan factory trained and Certified Subaru Technician.
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2003 Nissan Murano: the alternator..3.5L..charging system

Customer Question

justed replaced the alternator in a 2003 Nissan Murano 3.5L Its not charging at all?? Could it be somethng else affecting the charging system? How can I find out?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Nissan
Expert:  Mike V. replied 5 years ago.
Greetings Sir or Madam and welcome to JA! I will do my very best to assist you with your problem.
Hi there!
Are the battery and brake light lit up on the dash?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
No, because now battery is drained.
Expert:  Mike V. replied 5 years ago.
Ok, when it was running, did those lights appear on the dash?
These indicate the alternator isn't charging.
How did you test to determine the alternator isn't charging?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Only noticed the "service engine" light on

Volt tested alternator. It's at 8, should be reading 13 or more, correct?

took battery out put on a charger. put back in an truck will run until battery drains out again. took belt off and its the same.. so thinking its the alternator....again!

Expert:  Mike V. replied 5 years ago.
Yes, it's the alternator! 8 is no good for sure. The voltage regulator is inside the alternator. You will go through many aftermarket alternators until you get lucky enough to find one that is charging properly.
You need at least 14.2 volts under load. Load is with the blower, wipers and headlights all on. Then check it, if it is under 14.2 then the alternator is no good.
The fact that you are getting 8 means the wiring is in tact. It has to be the alternator.
Save some frustration and get a factory alternator for it.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I appreciate your response, but I cannot afford the $345 Nissan wants me to spend for an alternator, let alone the $99 an hour for labor!

The fact that I have to spend anything at all for a vehice less than 10 yrs old is frustrating enough.

Expert:  Mike V. replied 5 years ago.
I am only saying it may take some time to find one that is up to spec.
You may also find a used nissan alternator to save some money. They are all the same on the murano from 03-07
If you installed this one on your own, you can install the factory one as well. You don't have to pay the $99 per hour just to get a nissan alternator for it.
Either way, it is the alternator that is the problem for you.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Can it be tested BEFORE I install it?
Expert:  Mike V. replied 5 years ago.
Yes, the parts store can test it. The problem is they think 13 volts is enough, and it isn't. It needs to put out 14.2 to work and they have to load test it.
It is better to test on the vehicle, but it can be checked prior. I know they are no fun on these!