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Help: on holiday, alternator likely dead


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Hello friends

On my way from London to Scotland, im stoke on trent, the Battery light came on. Stopped and found a Halfords, Battery tests ok so it’s likely the alternator.

RAC are on the way but all the local garages are all booked up.

Ideas please!

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Found a local guy who repairs alternators, he said if we take it to him at 7am tomorrow he’ll have us back on the road by the afternoon. Booked a hotel for the night.

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The guy followed us to the hotel and put a new Battery in so tomorrow should be no problem getting to the garage. Just praying the guy can fix it! I think he rebuilds alternators and it’s right at the top of the engine bay so should be good, fingers crossed 

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Well I dropped the car off at 7am and the guy had a quick look under the bonnet and said it'll be fixed by 10. That's amazing!

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Also another part of the story that I think is worth sharing here is that when I went to Halfords for a Battery test, the young lad who did the test told me that "the alternator is working, but it's only charging to 12.2v". I was rather dubious of this given that all he'd done was attach leads to the Battery terminals so it would have been impossible to tell whether that 12v was coming from the alternator or the Battery, and in any case if the alternator was putting out 12v I doubt it would have charged the Battery anyway. He said that when he was in a similar situation he'd made it to manchester and seemed to be suggesting that carrying on to scotland might be viable. He also said the Battery was good.

When the RAC turned up they told me the alternator was completely dead and the Battery was knackered.

Take Halfords advice at your own risk!

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Obviously you'd rather it hadn't have happened in the first place, but great result Mark! Good to know there are still competent, helpful people out there.

 

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49 minutes ago, m4rkw said:

Car is fixed, he asked for £150, I gave him £200 with a smile on my face. 

 

A great result Mark.

If you can give us his full details, I`ll add him to my list of helpful garages so that other Members may benefit too and he might grow his business.

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Absolutely John, I tried to post this earlier but has no signal. Mark Autos (guy’s name is Mark) at 11 Hall St, Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent ST6 4BB, 01782 577251

Specialises in alternator and starter motor repairs. 

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1 hour ago, m4rkw said:

Absolutely John, I tried to post this earlier but has no signal. Mark Autos (guy’s name is Mark) at 11 Hall St, Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent ST6 4BB, 01782 577251

Lexus Indie Garages (1).docx

Thanks Mark. He has provided outstanding service to you

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Great result ;there are competent engineers out there ; the problem is finding them as they tend to be small outfits tucked away somewhere .Similar thing happened to us on holiday in Devon in a Volvo a few years ago ,I was able to remove the alternator in the hotel car park and find a brush holder had broken get a taxi to the auto electrician and have it fixed in 2 hours .I don't bother to carry tools any more in the Lexus ,I will rely on the breakdown guys .Enjoy the rest of your holiday

Dave 

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38 minutes ago, royoftherovers said:

Thanks Mark. He has provided outstanding service to you

John, I can also recommend this chap. Michael Wilkinson Auto Electrical Ltd - Auto electrical solutions & car diagnostic services, vehicle starter motor & alternator specialists. Call 01283 855 043. He is near Burton upon Trent, and I have used him twice for alternator diagnostic and refurb for Saab and Jaguar over the years. 

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Great result because when this happens and with a full load you feel a bit desperate.  During the power cuts or railway strike or whatever it was, (it was over 30 years ago now), I drove the 12 or so miles to my office in London in my Fiat 130 coupe.  Didn't have time to fix the alternator which had packed up just beforehand so took an additional fully charged Battery with me and Battery charger.  Charged both batteries during the day and was able to get there and back OK.  Thereafter, I used to carry a spare alternator, starter motor (as also had prior problem  with this), and, petrol pump from another 130 I broke for spares in the very large boot.  Inevitably these were never required! 

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Great result with “Olde Skool” service skills, let’s have a think what the Lexus dealer would have done.

”Your alternator has failed....you need a new one...parts and labour £843.00 plus VAT * we can get you in next week”

Amazing how once past the M55 Blackpool intersection the M6/M74 becomes like a motorway in the 70s.

If you’re going near Wick could you get me a bottle of Old Pulteney and drop it off on your way home please. 😀

* educated guess.

 

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5 minutes ago, steve2006 said:

we can get you in next week

 

Had a Subaru dealer say I needed a certain part. Would be £2000 + VAT and arrive in 4 weeks. 😬

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I was over the moon with how quickly that was sorted out, best £200 I’ve ever spent.

The alternative would have either been several more nights of hotel bills waiting for a garage to replace the alternator (at 4x the cost at best), or (more likely) having the RAC transport us and the car home and lose over a grand on the accommodation we booked.

Cracking bit of luck that it failed within 10 miles of that guy!

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