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What is the expected life span of a voltage regulator ? - 95 993

I am suspecting the brush in my alternator is going. Getting intermittent low voltage while driving (battery new and fully charged). What is the typical life expectancy on these things?
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1984 911 Carrera Coupe - 32C #73 - M64/05
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Old 12-12-2017, 10:50 PM
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They can last a long time (150K miles plus) in my experience. Still, if you're going to take the time to take the car apart and check it, you might as well just put a new one in. Lots of labor to get to, and the part is not expensive.
Old 12-13-2017, 08:39 AM
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Mine lasted 100k. Didn't get any dash warning lights , just checked charge voltage w multimeter. One "brush" was really worn.Contact rings were slightly grooved, but works fine w new regulator. Get a good quality replacement, as per above lots of works to get to one small parts.
Old 12-13-2017, 10:44 AM
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thanks guys. I got a little shy of 40K miles over 7 years on it and I know I installed Bosch one last time...the part is relatively inexpensive and I thought it was an easy job so i'd give it a shot. You guys suggesting lots of work is freaking me out a bit tho...

Paperboy, what was the charge voltage reading you saw for you to determine taking the alternator out?
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1984 911 Carrera Coupe - 32C #73 - M64/05
1989 E30 325i 4dr
2004 E46 M3 Coupe - RIP
2006 Sienna 5dr - the hauler
2010 Cannondale Caffeine II - Lefty
Old 12-13-2017, 11:38 AM
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It never went above 13,6 volt. Now it varies between 13,5 and 14. ( Bought a cheap volt meter that goes in the lighter socket to keep an eye on things. Also, when I did mine took the chance to repaint the fan and and fan shroud since they will be pretty much off the car. Sometime a quick job tends to swell) . I am sure there are good links on the procedure. This might sound obvious , but if you get an intermittent battery warning light, have you checked the alternator belt/pully?

Last edited by Paperboy; 12-14-2017 at 07:40 AM.. Reason: Spelling
Old 12-14-2017, 06:01 AM
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Also, worth checking/cleaning the earth strap between the startar motor/gearbox and body before you change the regulator/brushes. If there is poor contact this can cause poor charging and also warning lights coming on randomly.
Old 12-14-2017, 10:59 AM
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just took the VR out. the job was super easy. not sure who gave me the impression that the job was difficult. I did manage to take the two bolts holding the VR out with the fan in tact, but when i was installing the new VR, i took the fan out for easier working space. Zapping with a cordless impact works wonders for those stuff.

the VR I took out was not Bosch, but was a Kaehler. Digging my old receipt out, i'd only paid $12. I think this was a classic you get what you pay thing.
put everything back together and fired it up. 14.2V.

I do have a cigarette lighter volt meter. So that's what it made me know about low voltage. I'd also checked the belts (mine's a twin belt config, no AC) and no slippage. I never had battery idiot light come on except when rpm dipping low for the LTW. I've experienced the ground strap incident in the past but they are in good shape.

i think you always need to buy Bosch and not to cheap out when it comes to VR.



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1984 911 Carrera Coupe - 32C #73 - M64/05
1989 E30 325i 4dr
2004 E46 M3 Coupe - RIP
2006 Sienna 5dr - the hauler
2010 Cannondale Caffeine II - Lefty
Old 12-17-2017, 01:18 AM
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Glad you got it sorted. My rings were possibly a bit more grooved than yours but work fine.
Old 12-18-2017, 06:00 AM
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I'm glad too.
Rings...do you know if they are serviceable?
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1984 911 Carrera Coupe - 32C #73 - M64/05
1989 E30 325i 4dr
2004 E46 M3 Coupe - RIP
2006 Sienna 5dr - the hauler
2010 Cannondale Caffeine II - Lefty
Old 12-18-2017, 05:16 PM
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I believe new rings are available for Bosch alternators as part of a rebuild. Also believe if they are not to worn they can simply be skimmed. When I changed my regulator I gave them a quick clean with a fine grit paper without taking the alternator apart.Of course simply buying a new or reconditioning one is always easiest. (A very good link on a home refurb is available on this forum)

Last edited by Paperboy; 12-19-2017 at 03:03 AM..
Old 12-19-2017, 02:57 AM
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