Premier Power Alternator Installation

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Author: Scott Wilson November 1999
Editor's Note

This is a custom installation of a GM alternator onto a Toyota V6 engine.  The installation and suggestions given here are based upon my experience installing this alternator onto a 3.0L Toyota V6 engine.  Your results may vary.

My stock Toyota 60A alternator began to fail after 11 years of service.  After a call to my local Toyota dealer I discovered a Toyota replacement for my V6 alternator was going to cost me over $250.  I started doing a little research, and discovered that if I was willing to put $400 towards my alternator I could buy one of the 160A alternators available from Premier Power Welder.  A high output alternator had always been an upgrade in the back of my mind, but now that I was in need of an alternator I couldn't pass up the opportunity for an upgrade.  The alternator will help to power all the accessories I've added to the truck, and will make adding the Premier Power Welder a snap when the time comes.

After comparing the dimensions of the different alternator housings Premier Power offers, to the dimensions of my stock alternator I chose to use the GM 160A model.  The Ford 160A model would have been my second choice, but the Ford housing would need to be modified to fit into the Toyota alternator mounts.  The GM 160A housing has mounting points very similar to the stock Toyota alternator, but as you can see in the pictures, the overall size of the two alternators is very different.  Also keep in mind, the Toyota alternator has an internal regulator and fan blades.

When ordering your Premier Power alternator, you will have a choice of a normal pulley or serpentine pully.  The serpentine pulley (designed to fit a Chevy serpentine belt) will best fit our stock alternator belt.  Also, you must use the pulley supplied with your new alternator.  The new pulley is an overdrive pulley, it's smaller diameter will turn the brushes faster than stock for a given engine RPM.

Upper Mount

This is a picture of the Toyota V6 alternator upper mount.  The arrows in the picture point to where material must be removed to allow the large GM 160A alternator housing the room it will need to pivot in the mount.  Grinding the backside of the housing will give the alternator housing the room it needs to have a good range of motion (for tightening/loosing the belt of course).  Grinding the top side of the mount will give the external fan blades the clearance they need to move.  On my installation I did not need to remove very much material at all to get the clearance I needed.

Welded 2" extention Grind arc to clear blades

The picture on the left shows the stock alternator lower mount, with a 2" extension welded into it.  In retrospect I wish I would have offset the pieces when I welded them together, as shown with the white drawing.  Having the pieces offset would allow the belt tension to be adjusted without having to loosen the bolt holding the lower mount in place on the engine block.  In the picture on the right you can see the arc I had to grind into the mount to give the external fan blades the clearance they needed. If at some time you need to mount a stock Toyota alternator to the engine again (perhaps you carry your old alternator as a trail spare) you will also need an unmodified lower alternator mount.  The material removed from the upper mount will not effect mounting the stock Toyota alternator.

Bolted in place Bend dipstick slightly

With the mounts modified to work with the new alternator we can bolt the alternator in place, and put tension on the belt.  You may find that bending the oil dip stick rearward will give you a bit more room to install the alternator.  When the installation is complete this dip stick can be bent back into place.  When mounting the alternator the Factory top mounting bolt can be reused.  The lower mounting hole will require a standard bolt to mount it, which can be purchased from any hardware store.  The mechanical half of you installation is complete.  Now we must wire your new alternator.

New battery cable

A complete wiring harness, battery cable, and instructions come with each of Premier Power Welder's alternators.  The wiring portion of the installation may seem intimidating to some, but let me reassure you, even with very basic understanding of automotive wiring you can install this alternator.  The battery cable supplied to me was about 1/3 of the length I needed.  On this installation the battery is on one side of the engine compartment, the alternator is on the other, and in between are lots of moving parts and a radiator.  I chose to make a longer battery cable and route it from the battery around the back side of the engine compartment to get to the alternator.  If you need to do this as part of your installation, you can purchase the cable and ends from a local stereo shop.

Wiring in place

The (+) battery cable that I ran around the back of the engine compartment from the battery is then attached to the back of the alternator at the positive terminal.  Care should be taken to prevent shorting the positive alternator terminal to the nearby engine block or the dipstick.  I took the rubber boot off of my factory positive alternator wire and used it on the new wire I ran.  While doing the wiring installation, be sure the + battery cable is removed from the battery.

Since I was not using the battery cable supplied with the alternator, I used it as a ground for the alternator.  I connected the cable to the negative terminal on the alternator, and connected the other end to a factory grounding point on the adjacent fender.  A wire of this gauge (size) is not necessary, since the alternator is also grounded through the housing to the engine block, but since it was not going to cost any extra, and the wire was handy I used it.

HD Voltage Regulator

Here is the heavy duty external regulator made by Premier Power Welder.  This regulator comes with all of their alternators.  Mount the regulator where ever it is convenient.  I found a home for my regulator on my firewall.  The regulator has five wires coming out of it, Ignition, Stator, Field, Ground, and +12V.  The one pin standing alone on the regulator is the ground.  Before connecting any other wires to the regulator, run a wire to ground.  The other four wires in the harness all go into a single connector.  Plug the connector in lace on the regulator, and then when we will wire the other ends of these last four wires.

The orange and blue (stator and field respectively) wires have a connector at the other end that should be plugged into the back of the alternator.  The red wire needs to go to +12V.  For convenience I ran my +12V wire to the back of the alternator.  The Brown wire is the Ignition wire, and needs to be connected to the factory ignition wire.  On my 88 3.0 V6 this was the yellow wire in the factory alternator wiring harness.  Now be sure to tie the unused factory alternator wiring out of the way, and be sure all wires are tied in place where they cannot touch the exhaust header.

Upon first starting up your engine with the new alternator installed, you will likely be concerned with the high pitch whine coming from your new alternator (almost sounds like you just installed a Turbo!).  The high pitch whine is normal.  Included in your instructions is a list of measurements you need to take with a DMM (digital multimeter) to insure your alternator is working correctly.  Once you have verified your alternator is functioning properly your installation is complete.

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