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Ron K

E46 M3 Alternator

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The car started showing the solid red battery light and after a little while random warning lights started coming on (ABS, airbag etc) and the audio cut out within minutes. So I decided to cruise into a petrol station and surely enough it wouldn't start again - dead battery.

Jump started it and it ran for a few minutes before sputtering to death. So it's quite likely that the alternator is dead (the battery is quite new).

Any recommendations on how to go about fixing this? The local workshop seems to be having trouble finding the part. I did a quick google and it looks like the prices are all over the places too. Can this be reconditioned? Brand new from states? What's the go? Cheers!

Edited by Ron K

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AES in Henderson is the place to go

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I’ve been investigating this personally as mine’s got a bearing issue on it and in my opinion it makes more sense to get a new unit from the States.

The factory unit is made by Valeo and they are on special at ecstuning at the moment for usd$189. Shipping is expensive from ecs however ($130+) but in reality true shipping cost should be about us$89 with usps standard express box. - if you use someone else with an account with the likes of ups ect it’ll be cheaper again still, I actually think if you pack it tightly it might be cheaper still or if you ocean it with kiwishipping.

There is a catch however, through my investigation Valeo makes 3 tiers of this unit and it seems one is a remanufacture, one is OE (ie BMW) and one is Valeo branded. Without seeing all the units side by side it is very hard to judge if they are exactly the same.

My opinion however is alternators are not complicated units and they are all much the sameness really - so any good branded replacement will be just as good as the original unit - ie anything from Bosch, Valeo, Lucas or Denso is a good alternative if you can find them cheap and only slightly more expensive than a rebuild (which probably uses Made in China internals)

Edited by M3_Power
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Depending what is wrong with it, it is still often able to be repaired with new (usually genuine) parts. Take the car to a Sparky.

Tom - certainly worth repairing if only requiring bearings.

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Yes am aware and probably going to do just rebuild it myself ... I was simply thinking of downtime 

parts listed in description

https://youtu.be/13O6jgm6xag

 

or if you can find a Rover 75 with the 2.0CDT engine or Land Rover Freelander 2.0Td4 engine it shares the same alternator as the mighty M3 lol!

Edited by M3_Power

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Thanks heaps. Sounds like I should ring around some auto sparkies tomorrow.. Hopefully somebody would be able to test it and tell me what's wrong with it and fingers crossed it's something simple like the voltage regulator.

Rebuilding..might be fun but yeah dont want to take the car off road more than absolutely necessary :D

Edited by Ron K

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To have some closure, ended up taking it to A&H electrical and they were able to find me a Valeo unit for roughly the best price I could find from US.

In hindsight I could've gambled for a much cheaper fix by taking the alternator off myself and just replacing the voltage regulator. But not this time because the alternator came off at the shop and made sense to replace the whole thing. At least I have a peace of mind with a brand new unit. Thanks guys.

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If you have the old alternator overhaul it yourself win win you gain the experience and have a spare unit.

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On 7/6/2018 at 11:46 PM, Ron K said:

To have some closure, ended up taking it to A&H electrical and they were able to find me a Valeo unit for roughly the best price I could find from US.

Mind if I ask how much you paid for a new Valeo unit locally? Do you know if there are any more in stock locally?

Thanks

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It was something like $560 or 570 incl GST, which is pretty much what it'd have costed me to get it shipped from US. A&H guys got it from a local wholesaler - probably best for you to call them tomorrow :)

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Thank you!! That’s well priced for sure! The wholeseller list them for about $780+ 

 

Cheers!!

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