Removing the Alternator Bolt

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The alternator bolt must be removed when removing the alternator in your car. Learn how to remove an alternator bolt with expert car maintenance tips in this free auto repair video.

Part of the Video Series: How to Change an Alternator
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Video Transcript

In this clip we are going to talk about the proper way to remove the vehicle's alternator's mounting bolts. This clip is going to vary from vehicle to vehicle. On this particular vehicle, it is a Ford F150, we have 2 bolts to deal with. They are both readily exposed and right in front of the motor. On various other vehicles like you guys said, it will vary widely. Some vehicles have 2 bolts, some have 3 and some are located in different areas of the alternators and we will talk about that here in a moment. Right here I've located one of the alternator mounting bolts. As you can see, this bolt goes through an ear on the alternator and into a mounting bracket on the motor. Just take your ratchet; this one happens to be a 10 millimeter, slip it on there and break it loose. These are not a locking style bolts. As you can see, my ratchet is free wheeling there. Once you've got it broken loose, you can go ahead and get it out with your fingers. If you got trouble with your bolt wanting to free wheel on your ratchet, it is a good idea to take and use your fingers to put some more resistance on the socket so you can get an effective stroke. As you can see if I go like this, there is no ratcheting action. The bolt is looser than the resistance built in your socket. What you do is add a little bit more resistance to the socket and you can then turn it off. The mounting styles for your alternators vary widely. On this particular vehicle, it has 2 main mounting bolts. Most commonly you will see 3. They are going to be located on various parts of the alternator. You want to do a good visual inspection and remove any bolts that looked like they are potentially alternator bolts. I think we can get this guy out now. Finger tight. All right, there we have it. That is one of the alternator bolts. It is a good idea to take it and put it in your pocket or if you have a magnetic stray for your loose components, you can go ahead and put them on there. We have one more bolt to deal with here. It is on the other side. We put our ratchet on the end of the bulb that are broken loose. Once you begin loosening the last mounting nut, you will notice your alternator will become a little sloppy. That is going to indicate that that is the last bolt that we have to deal with. If there was another bolt that was run down all the way tight, it would be apparent that the alternator wouldn't slop around. You can see I am using my fingers to add a little more effective stroke otherwise it would just be free wheeling on ratchet. Let's see if we can get this guy out of here. If you are pretty close to finger tight, you can take and wiggle the alternator around and that will help you unscrew that bolt. A lot of times the last little bit of the bolts threads will stick through the back of the mounting bracket. Since they are exposed to air, they may get a little bit corroded so you notice the bolt will be tight when you break it loose and you will go through a nice portion of clean thread and it will get a little snug again. You may need to put your ratchet back on it. As you can see on the bolt, that's that last little bit of corrosion I was talking about. You can see the nice clean threads. It's going to be tight, loose and it may get a little tight again.


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