Several weeks ago I completed the conversion from the original Prestolite Alternator with external Voltage Regulator to the bolt-in 1988 Toyota Tercel Alternator with internal Voltage Regulator. I followed the instructions for the conversion carefully and even had my local old-timer mechanic confirm that I was wiring it right.
Every thing seemed fine from the get-go. It charged the battery for 3 or 4 minutes after starting and then the needle on the Ammeter settled right in the middle the dial. I have driven it 4 or 5 times and probably put at least 60 miles on the new set up.
It was fine, until today. When I started it up today to take my great grandson for a ride (yes, he appreciates the finer things of life like I do), the Ammeter showed a significant discharge, both with the ignition key on and with the car running, a discharge of about 10 amps if the Ammeter is to be believed. gunning the engine made no difference.
What is the likely problem? A bad Alternator/internal Voltage Regulator (purchased a rebuild from Rock Auto)? A short in my original wiring harness (I did take the precaution of installing a 60 amp fuse in the cable that goes from the Bat. terminal on the Alernator to the + terminal on the Ignition Switch)? Something else?
What tests can I do to find out what the problem is? Right now I am thinking I should have stuck with the old Prestolite, but the new setup seemed to promise more reliability.