How to Replace an Alternator in an '01 F150

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Changing the alternator in your 2001 Ford F-150 is not complicated as the alternator rests on top of the motor. The alternator is responsible for charging the battery as starting the truck will take a lot of charge off the battery. The alternator also is responsible for changing the current to a current your truck can use to power all the accessories. Changing the alternator should only take thirty minutes to complete.

Things You'll Need

  • Crescent wrench
  • Socket set
  • Socket wrench
  • New alternator

Removing the Alternator

  • Open the hood to access the engine compartment. Disconnect the battery by unscrewing the positive and negative terminals.

  • Locate the tensioner pulley under the alternator. Place a bare 3/8 in. socket wrench in the square hole at the top of the pulley.

  • Push the socket wrench down and pull the belt off the alternator pulley. The alternator is located to the top left of the motor.

  • Pull the wiring harness from the back of the alternator. Lift the tab up and pull it away from the alternator.

  • Unscrew the nut from the negative stud. Pull the wiring off the stud.

  • Unbolt the two bolts holding the alternator to the bracket with a socket wrench. Pull the alternator off with your hands.

Installing the Alternator

  • Bolt the alternator to the bracket with the socket wrench. Ensure the alternator is bolted tight.

  • Push the electrical connector to the back of the alternator. The connector will click once it is in place.

  • Unscrew the nut on the ground stud. Place the wire down on the stud and tighten the nut over it with a socket wrench.

  • Push the tensioner pulley down with the socket wrench and place the belt around the alternator pulley. Release the socket wrench to tighten the belt on the pulley. Pull the socket wrench off the tensioner pulley.

  • Connect the battery cable to the terminals on the battery with a crescent wrench. Ensure the black cable is tightened on the negative (-) terminal. The red cable will tighten on the positive (+) terminal.

  • Start the truck and allow it to run for fifteen minutes. Turn the truck off and let it sit for an hour. Start the truck to ensure the battery is holding a charge.

Tips & Warnings

  • Ensure you inquire if there is a core charge on the alternator. The core charge is the charge the auto parts store will charge you until you return the old alternator.
  • Always isolate the battery to prevent risk of electrocution.

References

  • Mobil Oil: Tutorial on Replacing an Alternator
  • "Ford Pick-ups, Expedition and Lincoln Navigator Haynes Repair Manual covering 2WD and 4WD gasoline models for F-150 (1997 thru 2003), F-250 (1997 thru 1999), Expedition (1997 thru 2009), and Lincoln Navigator (1998 thru 2003)"; John Haynes; 2009
  • Photo Credit Ablestock.com/AbleStock.com/Getty Images
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