Edmunds Answers



  • karjunkie 04/02/09 7:13 am PST

    Hi Paul: It certainly could be the alternator. The rotor inside the alternator rotates on bearings, normally very high precision needle bearings, and these can fail. When they do you will hear a loud grinding noise associated with the alternator. To isolate the noise take a length of tubing, heater hose will do fine, put one end to your ear and move the other around in the vicinity of the alternator. The noise will be much louder when you point it at the alternator if that is the culprit. Other possibilities are the water pump and the power steering pump which are also driven by the engine belt. To further isolate the noise disconnect the drive belt and spin the alternator by hand. If you hear a rumble or grinding noise then the bearings are shot. If you are pretty certain the noise came from the alternator it is a relatively simple task to take it apart and visually inspect and replace the bearings. You can of course just swap it in for a rebuilt unit at your local auto parts store. I would definetely use an independent mechanic for the job. It is very simple to remove and install a new unit and Honda will charge you 2-3 times more for the work.

  • paulynorf 04/02/09 7:41 am PST

    Many thanks for the quick response and great help.



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