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long story but answers a few questions that nissan can't.
I spent hours on the phone with nissan local and nissan north America with their answers to questions limited to -we can't- they can't-it won't-uh huh- and so sorry- then I got into the books and tools.

As we all know, the Armadas leak voltage like water through a sieve. I have been attempting to train the local stealership about the charging system. First problem identified is that Nissan has not updated their maintenance computer system for the Armada since 2006. Their current maintenance, parts, and service computers show a revision date of 2012 but contain all the 2006 images. So if you are looking for a current electrical system diagram for the Armada, don't bother looking for it, it's not there. However, the Titan crowd has found a way to apply leverage and most of the updated diagrams, to include the IPDM for the 2007-2010 Armada are on the Titan service system.

That being said, I went to replace the ECM relay on my 07's IPDM. Checked with Nissan Parts, Service, and Mechanics computer systems, got the diagram and the relay, per their instruction- only problem is the 2007-2010 has no ECM relay on the IPDM... It's included in the IPDM. The voltage regulator that we old farts all knew and loved, because it was easy to understand, manipulate, repair, adjust, is now included in the IPDM of 2010-2010. It's results go to the ECU which then controls the alternator output.

Reason this is interesting. The charging system is based on some really odd really old designs with modern adaptations. The ECU, which controls the charging rate, voltage, and amps, receives it's information from the IC regulator/electrical feedback sensor (the circular thing on the negative battery cable located about 6" down the line from the battery terminal.) it's the size of a 5 peso coin. Basically, it's a magnetic field sensor the exact same as what you run over at a stop light. The signal generated tells the ECU to tell the alternator how much and how hard to charge, ostensibly so that the alternator doesn't constantly charge, in order to save gas. But the field sensor/ic regulator/ feedback sensor routes through the IPDM. So here's what we start with.

You have basic battery voltage that isn't measured, but is indicated. You have basic battery amperage available, which isn't measured. Then you have running car voltage which is measured and compared to a reference voltage programmed into the IPDM and the ECU which sounds normal. But the reference voltage is programmed in as 12.1 volts (read from the OBDII port) So first problem is, the battery is fully charged anywhere from 12.4 volts for a factory new nissan overpriced lead acid battery to 13.2 volts for a top of the line AGM battery. So your charging system will never fully charge your battery. Next, with a battery of 13.2 volts, and OBDII port voltage indicated as 12.2 volts, and a dash gauge indication of 11.2 volts, you have three different inputs going to the IPDM and the ECU. Computers can't handle conflict. Now remember the voltage leaks we all have?

Well they come into play after the battery reference voltage of 12.1 comes into play. So the gauge may say you have 12.2 volts available, which is one needles width below center/half scale on the dash gauge, but you may only have 11.2 at the battery. 11.2 will generate all sorts of flashing dash lights, anti lock problems, transmission shifting problems, 4whl drive selector problems, traction control problems, etc.

If you have low voltage but have a system that doesn't leak voltage too badly or have an alternator that starts charging immediately, you should see a dash voltage needle position 1/8" to the right of center instantly after start up. If the charge catches up with the system before the system reacts to the low voltage, you may not know you have a problem.

The center line position on the dash voltage gauge is 13 volts. You should always see a voltage indication to the right of the center line. When you turn the car on, but don't start it, you should see a voltage indication with the needle on the dash gauge no more than one needle width to the left of center. If you have a super AGM battery, resting voltage will be with the needle touching the centerline on the gauge. So, we have an ECU and IDPM with all slots that can be programmed, programmed in with a 100% charge/voltage reference of 12.1. Nissan has no way of measuring or determining any of these parameters at the dealership level maintenance facilities. Of course, you also have to remember that Nissan has no maintenance facilities anywhere in the U.S. the maintenance facilities at the dealership are sub sub contracted companies who supply nissan with trained mechanics. Therein lies another problem. None of the nissan trained mechanics anywhere are taught how to repair the vehicle. They are simply taught how to swap parts. They have no diagnostic capability for anything. They have trouble shooting checklists that say if the car does X check Y, if Y isn't at X level, replace part Z. So if you have CV joints that are all clunking and can be moved by hand, nissan considers them to be OK and will not replace them until they physically break apart. If you have bad universals, they won't replace the universals, they replace the whole driveshaft unit. If your charging system is faulty or the factory programming in the IPDM or ECU is bad, they only know to swap parts and not fix anything.

So if your charging system needles swings correctly but doesn't charge your battery to the correct level. If your OBDII port shows a voltage one or two volts down from what the battery actually has. And everything appears to work correctly but not produce the desired results (fully charged battery) (no flashing dash lights) (correctly working antilock and traction control systems) then you have to figure a way to lie to the charging system to make it think it needs to do more, in order to get the correct results.

The IC regulator is temperature sensitive as cold makes wire flow voltage better, hot slows voltage down/decreases it. The connector into the sensor has three wires which are crimped and not soldered, then plugged together. Soldered or solid continuous wire is impervious to water, vibration, dust, temperature, etc. Crimps are not. Nissan has no way of diagnosing or checking the IC regulator/voltage feedback sensor. If you say it's bad, nissan can only replace the whole negative battery cable instead of replacing the 5 cent sensor loop. So- how do we get around this?

Fool the sensor! Take the tie wrap off the sensor, slide the sensor (black plastic circular thing with a plug on the bottom/side/back containing three wires that runs into a wire tube, then back to the IPDM) out of the way, take a piece of tin foil 4" x 5"wide and wrap it around the negative battery cable, centered where you will move the sensor back to when finished. Once you have the tin foil wrapped, cover it with a layer of electrical tape, one piece thick. Slide the sensor back to center over the tin foil and re-tie wrap it in place. It will now shield the negative battery cable and make the sensor think that it's reading less voltage than actual and tell the system to raise the minimal acceptable charge level to - in my case 13.4 volts- up from 12.1. More tin foil, higher charge levels, higher battery voltage. So far, 28 degrees up to 80 degrees no longer affects the output. Hours on the freeway at 80 degrees or hours on the freeway at 29 degrees make no difference. The click and return to zero charge is gone. And if I let the car sit a week, when it starts, it immediately charges at 14.2 volts, dropping as the battery re-energizes stopping at a charge level of 13.9 when cold or 13.4 when hot.

On my AGM 13.2 volt battery, resting voltage has gone from 12.2 volts (11.1 volts on a new nissan battery) before the fix up to 12.9-13.2 volts after the fix.-where it's supposed to be- It's cheap, easy, and allows you to manipulate the voltage as you watch so you can check the rest of the systems performance as well.
 

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Great find and diagnosing the electrical system. good info, yea it sounds crazy to me the way its setup, I'll do some checking to see what our 2010 outputs. Thanks for the info.
 

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This thread couldn't be more timely. I recommissioned my mini van and have been using it to drive to & from work lately. Needless to say the Mada has been sitting for a week at a time now. Well I just discovered the voltage leaks you speak of. DW went to start it last Sunday on the way to Church and battery was all but dead. So I figured that twenty or so minute drive to church shoulda topped of the battery. I went to drive it to work on Wednesday and very slow start again but started. Again, twenty five minutes to work and surely that should have topped it off right? Nope, still slow to start. I was beginning to think that maybe the battery was shot. I'm now rethinking this. Thank you for that very handy piece of info.

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I just wonder what there thinking was behind this. Our 2010 has been setting since last wed I will raise the hood in morning and get a battery Idle reading before first start, then crank engine and see what the Alternator is charging just for kicks and giggles.
I deal with a lot of voltage drop issues working on Inverters, If a Alternator is charging at 13.8 or lower its hard to keep batteries in good working condition if loaded hard.

Ok just went out and done a test on our 2010 Titanium, before starting Battery read 12.45 volts its been setting for 5 days in 30 degree weather, after starting the truck Alternator charging Battery reading is pumping out 14.51 volts initial start hi idle, Then settled down to 14.31 volts. I see the Sensor your talking about red.black.red wires into sensor, Seems like mine is doing what its suppose to right now, I would suggest everyone check theres out to know what kind of charging outputs there getting . I have a new Battery it looks like.. Duralast 710 cold cranking amps . at 32 degrees its 812 cranking amps its 42 degrees outside right now, been checking the volts and its now settled in at 14.21 volts.. I'm happy with these results and will file this mod just in case I need it. My alternator and charging system is kicking chicken , love this suv so far..Good tip fn4..Thanks for the info..
E&J, it will be interesting to see what you come up with.
Here is where my needle set reading 14.3 Volts . charging Battery.
 

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F4N4EVR, I'm about to give your fix a try. I've never stopped to take a look at that before but that thing (sensor) is nothing more than a very small window transformer. My question to you is, does the foil go the length by the 4" or 5"? I'm gonna guess and say length by the 5". I hope I'm right, even if not its a quick change anyway.

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F4N4EVR, I'm about to give your fix a try. I've never stopped to take a look at that before but that thing (sensor) is nothing more than a very small window transformer. My question to you is, does the foil go the length by the 4" or 5"? I'm gonna guess and say length by the 5". I hope I'm right, even if not its a quick change anyway.

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E&J/F4N what goes bad , is it the sensor kinda like a amp/temp reader, or is it the other end regulator.
Whats the Vampire that draws on these Armadas.
 

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Liquid 1, I wish I could say what the "vampire" is. I do know that "things" continue to run after you shut the engine off. A little evidence of that is when you do shut it off, if you continue to watch the instrument cluster you can see the tach and Speedo "dip" and if you listen you'll hear some servos actuate, I think in the ventilation system and then it appears to go quiet. I'm sure the "onboard computers" are still active to some degree. The memory for the audio, nav system if you have it, that "flight" data recorder that captures the last 30 seconds continueous as you drive, and I'm sure it stores that until you start driving again oh and don't forget about the emissions system monitors and who knows what else? These things are typical for todays cars though.

Are you just using a multimeter to test for charging voltage or something more? I know you don't use a multimeter to test a battery because you can't load test it that way. I'd imagine it's the same and I don't have a load tester.

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My 04 doesn't have the variable charging system.
I think the attachments show the variable charging system and its components.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Tried to respond 4x but site keeps logging me out before I can post 4 paragraphs, will keep trying.
 

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Liquid 1, I wish I could say what the "vampire" is. I do know that "things" continue to run after you shut the engine off. A little evidence of that is when you do shut it off, if you continue to watch the instrument cluster you can see the tach and Speedo "dip" and if you listen you'll hear some servos actuate, I think in the ventilation system and then it appears to go quiet. I'm sure the "onboard computers" are still active to some degree. The memory for the audio, nav system if you have it, that "flight" data recorder that captures the last 30 seconds continueous as you drive, and I'm sure it stores that until you start driving again oh and don't forget about the emissions system monitors and who knows what else? These things are typical for todays cars though.

Are you just using a multimeter to test for charging voltage or something more? I know you don't use a multimeter to test a battery because you can't load test it that way. I'd imagine it's the same and I don't have a load tester.

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E&J, Yep I was using a Calibrated Fluke 87, I have a load tester but didn't want to load check my battery no need to put a strain on it if its working at the moment.
You can check Drain draws on Electrical circuits, its a long process and time consuming, Need to remove each circuit at a time that's suspected and install the multi meter between the circuit and read amp draws on amp setting. Todays electronics are getting nuts and demanding more outa the Batteries and Charging circuits.
FN4 hope you can get on, look forward to your comments.
 

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To try again, the voltage feedback sensor is the black plastic ring around the negative wire off the battery. It senses the magnetic field from the black ground wire and sends a signal to the idpm which forwards the signal to the ecu computer which then tells the alternator what charging level to initiate. But- the sensor is affected by proximity to the frame, other ground wires (grounding kit) and the positive battery cable. I increased the foil wrap to 8" long by 5 wraps around. I then wrapped the sensor loop with foil to isolate it from interference. When I start, it goes to 13.9V -14.2V, then settles down to a steady state 13.7V when it's cold and 12.9V when it's above 60 degrees outside. So my ecu is working as advertised, the sensor is working, there is no ecm or charging relay on the 2007-2010 ipdm, they are built in. So I have a bad ipdm but nissan won't honor their warranty. They just hook up a machine to the battery (irrelevant), start the car, tell me the charging system works (irrelevant) and makes excuses. Nissan has no way of testing or troubleshooting the ipdm, they just decide or don't decide to swap parts. As liquid1 says- you need a minimum constant of 13.8V steady state charging volts to survive.
The problem I see is several fold. The system has a fixed reference voltage of 12.1V which is too low for any good battery. The system should auto sense 100% charge level and adjust the system to the battery- it doesn't and can't. Since it's a manually programmed voltage, Nissan should be able to adjust the reference voltage through their diagnostic equipment, they can't. If the sensor loop was made of one metal and solid, instead of three different kinds of metal and crimped, it would remove that device from the problem category.And, if you can talk Nissan through your trouble shooting process and show them how you came to your decision, they should duplicate it, accept it, and fix your car, and not make excuses. They don't.
By wrapping the voltage feedback loop sensor and negative cable in foil, you are forcing the charging system to prove it works.

The biggest draw is the 25 or 30 bad ground points. There is a service bulletin for the 06 titan, which is the same as the armada underneath the dash forward. I posted the link in one of my rants. Nissan put crimped connections instead of soldered connections in it's electrical system. On my primary ground point behind the battery, I have a copper wire crimped into an aluminum connector with a steel screw into a painted body panel. Another problem is faulty diodes in the alternator that leak voltage. If you hook up a scan gauge II, you can watch the system power up and drain voltage on shut down.

I use both the multi meter up front and a scan gauge II plugged into the obdII port to watch what the systems do through that venue. The ripple test is via the multi meter across the battery terminals while running at 1500 rpm with the AC voltage selected on the multimeter at the lowest AC voltage selectable. AC voltage is what the alternator puts out, converted to DC by the diodes. You should see about .10 ac volts across the terminals while running if the diodes ate correctly converting the voltage to DC. More than .1 means a diode is not working perfectly.
The diode check -multi meter- little arrow into a plus sign- is by disconnecting the pos battery cable from the battery. Then take the pos multi meter wire and connect it to the pos terminal on the back of the alternator. Take the negative multimeter wire and ground it to the alternator case. The multi meter then puts out test voltage and you should see a positive reading. Mine starts at .1 and climbs to about 2.5V. Then reverse it. Red wire to case, black wire to pos terminal on back of alternator. Various folks say you should not see more than .3V in that direction, indicating working diodes (one way directional electrical flow gates). Mine show .5V in the reverse mode. (Bad)
Nissan does the charging system test with the battery connected into the system. If you have a good battery, it can mask a lot of alternator problems.
Another test is to leave everything connected, multi meter in DC mode 20V, engine and key off. Touch pos multimeter wire to pos terminal on back of alternator (guy laying on floor underneath) touch neg multi meter wire to pos terminal on battery. Folks say you should see no more than .2V positive DCV indicated, or system leaks voltage. But on the two or three madas I have played with, each indicate 1 to 2 volts of leakage. Mine leaks 2V. With the engine running, my alternator puts out 14.2V and by the time it gets to my battery, it's 13.2V.
 

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Thanks for this info.
 

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Do you have pics of the fix? My 2012 Titan just started acting weird. Dash lights coming on when the key is in my hand and gauges jumping. Had the alternator tested and it shows the voltage regulator failed. I am getting 13.72v to 13.76v at the battery with my tester. Doesn't matter the rpm.
 

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Do you have pics of the fix? My 2012 Titan just started acting weird. Dash lights coming on when the key is in my hand and gauges jumping. Had the alternator tested and it shows the voltage regulator failed. I am getting 13.72v to 13.76v at the battery with my tester. Doesn't matter the rpm.
Here is Part One of the Mod - Prep

Do you have pics of the fix? My 2012 Titan just started acting weird. Dash lights coming on when the key is in my hand and gauges jumping. Had the alternator tested and it shows the voltage regulator failed. I am getting 13.72v to 13.76v at the battery with my tester. Doesn't matter the rpm.
Part two of Mod - Mod in place

Do you have pics of the fix? My 2012 Titan just started acting weird. Dash lights coming on when the key is in my hand and gauges jumping. Had the alternator tested and it shows the voltage regulator failed. I am getting 13.72v to 13.76v at the battery with my tester. Doesn't matter the rpm.
Part Three of Mod - Results. Didn't see much change But I may have done it wrong. F4N4EVR please chime in if I did your MOD wrong:|

This MOD was done on my 2013 Armada SV. The 2011 as of yesterday evening has a dead battery. Only reading 2.3 standing volts. took it off the vehicle and measured again... 7.2V. its on the charger now charging. I'm doing this mod again on it once the battery is recharged.
 

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I thought this thread was the answer to my low voltage problem. I have an Optima red top that is always around 12.2-12.4 volts first thing in the morning. I thought the battery was the problem, and have charged it a few times, but maybe it is the charging system. I have an 06 though and don't have the sensor on the neg battery cable. Are there any mods available for me?
 

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Sorry for the delay- I was on a walkabout. You did it right. Follow up. Nissan finally replaced my alternator under warranty. They have no way of checking, measuring, or correctly reprogramming the ipdm! It's now 2016, 1.5 years on the new alternator. It's bad- talked to a number of alternator builders. Problem one. Nissan until md 2007 build, used defective, incorrectly built cheapo Hitachi alternators. But- Nissan has warehouses full of Hitachis. So while they changed suppliers from Hitachi to and improved model, to date, they are using faulty Hitachis to replace broke alternators, adding insult to injury. I went to a custom builder and he told me no one will even attempt to upgrade or rebuild a Hitachi alternator on any model Nissan because they are all faulty and can't be fixed. So I just ordered a Mechman alternator. Direct drop in. Will report what happens. The Mechman recognizes the Nissan piss poor design and the guy told me to make sure I upgrade the battery cables to 1 ga, with soldered connections. If you research the volt/amp capabilities of the oem wiring on the Hitachi 130amp oem alternator, you will see that its max capability is only 37 amps... Minus the crimped, potmetal, painted, connection points in the system. In addition to the ground kit I installed (mentioned on the forum), I soldered all the ground kit connectors. I also added a ground from the ecu and ipdm mounting blocks that run to the frame, and the firewall. My indicated voltage at the obd2 port is now the same as at the battery and alternator, instead of 2-3 volts less than at the battery. The Hitachi alternators can only be expected to perform to mnimum standard for a year and a half before they become temperature/ bump intermittent. The 08 mada was recalled for upgrade of 128 grounding points in the front end. But As always, Nissan chose the wrong course, and didn't correct any other year (all of them). Quickest start to fixing the electrical system is to replace the oem battery pot metal ring clamps that have a different expansion rate than the posts, with solid lead/ not hollow lead, clamps. Solder all the connections, double or triple the size of the factory 6 gauge battery cables. And if you are so inclined, replace the pulley on the hitachi oem alternator with one 1/2-3/4 inch smaller. It will require a serpentine belt of identical smaller length, but it will boost the alternator rpm for better output to the 37 amp max system capability. More to follow!



Part Three of Mod - Results. Didn't see much change But I may have done it wrong. F4N4EVR please chime in if I did your MOD wrong:|

This MOD was done on my 2013 Armada SV. The 2011 as of yesterday evening has a dead battery. Only reading 2.3 standing volts. took it off the vehicle and measured again... 7.2V. its on the charger now charging. I'm doing this mod again on it once the battery is recharged.
Sorry for the delay, was across the pond for a while. Your mod is correct, but all it does is force a lie into the ecm telling it to put out max charging power. Ultimately, I took the sensor off the wire, unplugged it, and tossed it in the junk drawer. Nissan installing the sensor was an expensive fix to a bad alternator design. Current real alternators have the regulator and voltage sensing capability built in. But, it's a chain of cheapo parts that hurt the armada. Also, if you have a LoJack installed, for some reason, it kills batteries. It makes no sense, but I was leaking voltage after all my upgrades. I read an article that said to check the LoJack install. The LoJack guy came out, explained everything, and removed the unit. Also removed the LoJack from our other 1997 car! All battery problems went away!
On the mada, look at each link in the charging chain. The OEM alternator is 130 amp surge capable. Which means max steady state output is 65 amps. That's at 100%! my mada uses 65 amps with no AC or lights, or stereo, cooling fans, or video player. So if I turn anything on, I am getting a net loss in the electricity department. On my OEM alternator, first I changed out the tin foil nissan battery clamps. They won't pass enough charging power back, to keep the battery charged. Then, I did pops forum recommended grounding kit- with all soldered connectors. Then I increased the size of the little black ground wire -4x larger- on the back of the alternator. Then I cleaned up (removed paint) from every ground point I could find under the hood. Reading the recall on the 08's electrical recall identifies all the problem points.
So- to keep this short- attention to detail. If you solder the ends of the battery cables, and alternator wires, you will get an improvement. If initial start charge level is in the 14.5v range, your connections are good at a no load level. You should never see charge levels below about 13.4v. My biggest improvement was going to 1ga. Soldered tip, Battery cables + to the alt, and from the alt body/case ground - to the negative battery terminal. In my case, that got me up to a max of 13.2v charge. Then I put in a Mechman 270 amp alt. and it cured all voltage woes. It give a steady state charge capability of 130 amps if necessary. Stays just warm to the touch during normal ops. The oem would stay finger burning hot, no matter what!

I thought this thread was the answer to my low voltage problem. I have an Optima red top that is always around 12.2-12.4 volts first thing in the morning. I thought the battery was the problem, and have charged it a few times, but maybe it is the charging system. I have an 06 though and don't have the sensor on the neg battery cable. Are there any mods available for me?
I have been through the Optima battery series as well. It's a gel cell battery that likes a different charging style than oem lead acid batteries. The best thing you can do to maximze the optima capability is get the forum spoken of grounding kit (solder all connections prior to install). Then get solid lead battery clamps to replace the oem tin foil clamps. Then solder the connectors on the ends of the pos/neg battery cables. Or- put in a 1ga size cable (red) (soldered ends) from the alternator to the battery. and put in a 1ga. Black cable (soldered ends) from the battery to the alternator mounting bolt. The alternator grounds through the case, so improving the ground improves output. The oem set up routes the red cable from the battery, to the starter, thence to the alternator. All crimped connections. So each crimped connection, and added connection reduces capability, and voltage. When/if you add the 1ga cables, leave the existing oem cables in place, and just attach the new improved cables to the existing terminal connections.
Nissan appears to have "scienced" and engineered their design in an excellent manner! Then some mope came in and said- we need to junkify this, that, and the other thing, in order to flood the sub, sub, sub, contracted franshise stealerships with repairs, so they can bilk the customer!

Sorry for the delay. You are right about the window transformer. Nissan doesn't have a clue as to why it's there, or what it does. They just say it's a necessary sensor. The only reason to have one, that I can see, would be to minimize alternator belt drag to increase gas mileage by telling the alternator to take a rest, instead of continually charging.
The other reason would be to backstop a missing or faulty design in the alternator itself.
Compared to my new Mechman alternator ( runs just warm to the touch), my oem alternator ran a constant finger burning hot, to the touch. Since heat kills generator output, the window loop transformer may be there to tell the alternator to minimize output in order to cool down! (doesn't work for that)!

Sorry for the delay-
I use a multi meter in the AC mode, on the battery, to measure carrier voltage. The carrier voltage is necessary to tell the charging system what to do. However, above a certain pount, it is a detriment to the system, indicating a bad diode. I think it's a max of .2v ac. No testing machine for checking charging systems has the capability to check the ac voltage. Certainly nothing in the nissan inventory!
Just google -measuring AC voltage in a 12 volt alternator- and you'll find the info. the car must be running to test it, and it won't fry the multimeter, or damage anything.
 

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F4N4EVR - How has your rig been since installing the alternator?

I'm considering replacing mine now that I am 130k+ miles...

The Mechman G series looks pretty good..

Any other recommendations?

If I were to use the Mechman, should I retain the sensor on the negative battery cable?

thx!
 

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My system, and all downstream component operation has been flawless since installing the mechman alternator. No more yearly battery replacement- yeah! Recognize that soldered tips on all cable ends are mandatory for optimum performance. You will need to get a 1" shorter serpentine belt. You will have to order it on line. The 1" shorter belt fits a V-6 powered generator, so it's correct strength spec. I am at 35,000 miles on my belt, with less noise, and better petformance than oem.
I recommend getting the kit that mechman sells, with the alternator. Also make sure they give you the correct dimension bolt. The one that came with mine was 1/2" short, because nissan changed the mounting bracket specs.... I just went to ACE and got a longer bolt, and installed it. Make sure to put the bolt in to minimize protrusions (bolt head) on the belt side.
Also, recognize that oem battery clamps can't pass more than 17-20 amps through them. You need solid lead (not hollow lead) battery clamps to allow the necessary recharge/opetating amperage to flow.
What you will notice with the mechman is it runs much cooler. After 10 minutes of driving, I could not touch the oem substandard POS alternator without burning my finger. The mechman, runs comfortably, 50 degrees cooler!
You can retain the sensor, but it just conflicts with the internal regulator in the mechman. So when you add the 1 gauge ground cable from the alternator bracket, just unplug the loop transformer from its wire, and tape the wires sealed, out of the way. Also recognize that if you have lojack, it will perpetually kill the battery. I had lojack in all my cars, was always replacing batteries short of expected life span! Removed all the lojacks, and all associated voltage drain problems went away!

The belt I use with the Mechman alternator is a PIX 976 X'ceed K7 belt. It a Kevlar 7rib belt, vastly superior to nissan belts, and is showing less aging symptoms than my prior gates belt. It also has the number 11088 on the belt, and 81. I am trying to remember the web source for the belt. The 976 is a primary drive belt on a commercial lawn mower in real life. The other reference I saw for it as a generator serpentine belt. If I find the web page again, I'll post it.
 

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This huge...

Thanks so much for posting this additional info!

I am going to do this...

I need to find the other threads on this forum regarding how to measure for voltage drops / loss so I can baseline my system before changes.

One other question: can you recommend a grounding cable kit and do you know if the FSM identifies all of the grounding locations? (Note that I will follow your advice to solder all connections)

I think I saw a post somewhere that said that Nissan recalled 2008 Armadas for grounding issues..

Thx
 
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