02-06 Alternator replacement - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 13 Old 11-27-2019, 05:01 PM Thread Starter
TerraIncognita
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02-06 Alternator replacement

I recently had to replace the alternator on my 2003 TJ 4.0. The OE Denso alternator had a crack in the casting and I needed to replace it on the side of the road, apparently a fairly common problem.

I decided to see what upgrades would fit without any modification (bottom of page). First, I could not find OE upgrades beyond the 117A Denso listed for the model. I could not find a cross reference list for any vehicle that shared the same alternator. So, I decided to make one of my own.

There is only one other vehicle that is a direct fit for the 02-06 TJ, that is the 02-06 Grand Cherokee with an inline 6. The Cherokee has a slightly higher output of 136A, but I found shares the same mounting bracket and connector.

There are a several options from other Chrysler products that will fit without or with minimal mods. Any alternator from a 3.7L V6 or a 4.7L V8 between 2002 and 2006 should fit, but check first. The only problem is that these alternators have 4th arm that is not needed and makes removing the coil pack more difficult. This 4th arm can be cut off.

One thing to watch is the electrical connector. In the 2006/2007 model years the connectors changed. Some 2006 have the newer and some 2007 have the older...

I installed a 136A alternator from a 2006 Liberty that I picked up from the closest wrecker for $40. My search was done using a measuring tape and picking through a pile of Mopar alternators and checking the model for specs online over my phone. It dropped in perfectly, I may cut off the extra arm later... or not. It works without fault so far.

My only concern is the the gauge of the fusible link from the alternator. Does anybody have any info on this?. I think the wire gauge is 6 and the link ??

The lead from the alternator is about 2ft. At 13.8V and 150A, 8 AWG should be the minimum thickness of the lead. What is the appropriate gauge of the fusible link? I recall a rule of thumb was 4 wire gauge sizes smaller. So a 12AWG link? seems a little small to me. I though that 10AWG would be appropriate. Any help here?

DIRECT FIT
2002-2006 Wrangler TJ/LJ (4.0L INLINE 6)
56041864AA/AB 117A

2002-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee (4.0L INLINE 6)

50641322AA 132A
56044678AA 136A (Best OE upgrade IMO)

MODIFIED FIT
2001-2006 Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee/Lareodo (4.7L V8)
56041693AC 136A
56029914AC 160A

2001-2006 Dakota(3.7L V6, 4.7L V8)
56028692AA 136A
56041557AA 136A
56041693AA/AB/AC 136A

2001-2006 Durango(3.7L V6, 4.7L V8)
56041120AB/AC 136A
5170748AA 160A
56029700AA/AB/AC 160A
56029914AA/AC 160A

2002-2006 Liberty (3.7L V6)
5170748AA 160A
56028692AA 136A
56041693AC 136A
56029914AC 160A

2006 Mitsubishi Raider
56028692AA 136A
56041693AC 136A
56029914AC 160A

2006 Commander

56029914AA/AC 160A
51707480AA 160A

2004-2006 Ram (4.7L V8)
56041120AB/AC 136A
5170748AA 160A
56029700AA/AB/AC 160A
56029914AA/AC 160A


Last edited by TerraIncognita; 11-27-2019 at 05:04 PM. Reason: typo
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post #2 of 13 Old 12-05-2019, 11:16 PM
mukluk
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The fusible link is 10ga per the FSM wiring diagram.

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post #3 of 13 Old 12-06-2019, 12:00 PM Thread Starter
TerraIncognita
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Mukluk, good to see a response from the "Group W" bench. 10AWG makes sense. Thanks.

Last edited by TerraIncognita; 12-06-2019 at 12:01 PM. Reason: typo
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post #4 of 13 Old 12-06-2019, 12:08 PM
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many, myself included, have gone to the Durango 160a alt.


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post #5 of 13 Old 12-06-2019, 03:08 PM
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Why do you want a replacement with a higher rating? I could see maybe if you had added a bunch of electrical draining upgrades-- There was a lot of engineering into this kind of electrical stuff and my exp is factory know best most of the time. Man you dont want to get into electrical / ghost problems-- them are the WORST-- even worse than leaks. When I had vehicles ( 2) that started having sporadic crazy electrical issues I sold them before quick- got stranded 1100 miles from home the last time. I would stick with a stock replacement-- didnt the stock one serve you good all these yrs??
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post #6 of 13 Old 12-06-2019, 05:50 PM
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@hubbabubba
When the original alternator died in my TJ, I replaced it with a higher output unit because it was a little more than half the price of an original 81A replacement. Didn't make sense to me to pay more for less output.

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post #7 of 13 Old 12-07-2019, 03:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mukluk View Post
@hubbabubba
When the original alternator died in my TJ, I replaced it with a higher output unit because it was a little more than half the price of an original 81A replacement.
Just for my own benefit--
The stock output on the 4.0 is 81A ?
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post #8 of 13 Old 12-07-2019, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hubbabubba View Post
Just for my own benefit--
The stock output on the 4.0 is 81A ?
The stock alternator would have been either 81A or 117A, depending on how the Jeep was equipped originally.

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post #9 of 13 Old 12-08-2019, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
TerraIncognita
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I have seen a few different stock alternators. For the 2002-2006 4.0L USA-Canada models I have only seen the 117A (56041864AA, 56041864AB) as stock.

I see the standard base alternator for the 2001 4.0 without options was the 81A 56041565AA and 56041565AB. The optional alternator was the standard 117A alternator for 2002-2006. I am sure there are other configurations based upon option package and delivery region.
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post #10 of 13 Old 12-08-2019, 05:24 PM Thread Starter
TerraIncognita
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hubbabubba View Post
Why do you want a replacement with a higher rating? I could see maybe if you had added a bunch of electrical draining upgrades-- There was a lot of engineering into this kind of electrical stuff and my exp is factory know best most of the time. Man you dont want to get into electrical / ghost problems-- them are the WORST-- even worse than leaks. When I had vehicles ( 2) that started having sporadic crazy electrical issues I sold them before quick- got stranded 1100 miles from home the last time. I would stick with a stock replacement-- didnt the stock one serve you good all these yrs??
My motivation was a quick replacement, roadside repair. I was not in a position to wait days for an exact replacement. I was close to the wrecker where I found the replacement.

My TJ came with a 117A alternator. I have never seen an 81A in a 2002-2006 with a 4.0L. Moving from a 117A to a 136A alternator did not require any changes in wiring. The 10ga fusible link and the 6ga wire gauge from the alternator is sufficient for a larger alternator change. I agree with hubabuba, that moving from a 81A to a 160A alternator would likely require change to the wiring and there may be limitations in voltage regulator that could damage the ECU. (Anybody know if this is a real issue?) That is why limit my comments to TJs with 4.0 produced in model years 2002-2006. The swaps I considered were from product lines that utilized ND alternators. For cost and practicality, ND and Chrysler did not vary alternator design significantly between the 2.4, 2.5, 3.7 4,0 and and 4.7 motor platforms over these years, similar mounts, similar connectors, same method of regulating voltage.


As to the voltage regulator in the ECU. I believe it controls voltage independent of current. Other than upgrading the wire and fusible link I do not think there is any issue. Sites selling 160A alternator upgrade replacement alternators indicate there are no issues.

One thing I found looking at alternator output there are three different Amperage numbers. A 136A alternator may produce 160A at max RPM and 80A at idle. but may be sold as a 136A or a 160A alternator. The replacement 117A alternator may have a peak output of 136A

Comments and explanations welcome. I have found several posts and videos on alternator up grades, but have not found people with EVR issues following upgrade.
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post #11 of 13 Old 03-12-2020, 02:25 PM
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TerraIncognita, great list of options. I am looking at upgrading mine and have been wondering what was a good option for the 160 amp ones.

Mike Fox

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work in progress.
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post #12 of 13 Old 03-13-2020, 11:26 AM Thread Starter
TerraIncognita
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I would just go to a local wrecker see what is available. If you ask a wrecker they generally won't know. The instant response is "No, don't have one". Print out the list, take a photo of your existing alternator, and look around. I would start with vehicles with the 4.7l V8 and loaded with factory power accessories (power everything, towing kit, plow option). Before you remove the alternator, spin it with your hand. You do not want to pull one that needs a rebuild, bad brushes and bearings often can be felt this way. With the TJ it takes about 15 minutes to remove. It is worth doing the swap in the parking lot to see if it works.

If you go with a higher output alternator, it may be worth upgrading your battery cables. You may need a higher gauge wire and fusible link form your alternator to the power block to handle the increased current.

If you find an option that looks right but is not in the list I posted, google it on your phone. That is how I started the list. You may find a better aftermaket option like a mean-green or powermaster.
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post #13 of 13 Old 03-13-2020, 04:12 PM
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All good points. I actually just ordered a cable upgrade kit today to be ready for swapping alternators when I find one. Used to work in a parts store many moons ago and have felt my share of bad alternator bearings and such. But good reminder to check all that. Thank you.



Quote:
Originally Posted by TerraIncognita View Post
I would just go to a local wrecker see what is available. If you ask a wrecker they generally won't know. The instant response is "No, don't have one". Print out the list, take a photo of your existing alternator, and look around. I would start with vehicles with the 4.7l V8 and loaded with factory power accessories (power everything, towing kit, plow option). Before you remove the alternator, spin it with your hand. You do not want to pull one that needs a rebuild, bad brushes and bearings often can be felt this way. With the TJ it takes about 15 minutes to remove. It is worth doing the swap in the parking lot to see if it works.

If you go with a higher output alternator, it may be worth upgrading your battery cables. You may need a higher gauge wire and fusible link form your alternator to the power block to handle the increased current.

If you find an option that looks right but is not in the list I posted, google it on your phone. That is how I started the list. You may find a better aftermaket option like a mean-green or powermaster.

Mike Fox

My Jeep:
06 Wrangler LJ Rubicon
work in progress.
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