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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife's 2010 Caliber came up on 75,000 and the alternator (#2 1st one went out at 30,000) crapped out. (actually the clutch did.) I bought the high dollar unit (life time) from Oreilly's. Everyone needs to change one out just for the experience. Anyway...the new one has been in there a little of a month and she got a "light." It appeared in the morning on the first start of the day. I found out that if I shut it down and restarted multiple times, the alternator will start charging and be OK for the rest of the day. When I went under the hood to investigate a possible loose connection, that's when I found out the clutch was not turning when the light came on. This alternator hasn't got more than 200 miles on it. What is the issue with these clutches? Is something that has been a problem with other Calibers? The first alternator was changed out at a local shop. (expensive labor) I didn't have the time to change it myself. however, I installed this new one. Which brings up another question. This was the first time I had really been up under this car. (which I bought for my wife brand new) and saw something that, to me just wasn't right. Around the full perimeter of the oil pan was red RTV extruding out from the oil pan's mating flange. I wouldn't think that the factory would of installed the pan with RTV??? The car has only been in the shop three times, to the dealer twice, one time for the ABS system (sensor) and again for a fuel pump, also many oil changes (warranted) and to an independent shop for the first alternator I've had the oil changed by an independent when the warrantee expired. Is it possible that one of those shops removed the oil pan and for what reason? I did notice that when I removed this past bad alternator the plastic guard around the hot terminal pole was broken and one of ribs for the cooling register was broke and missing.
Norm
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
My wife's 2010 Caliber came up on 75,000 and the alternator (#2 1st one went out at 30,000) crapped out. (actually the clutch did.) I bought the high dollar unit (life time) from Oreilly's. Everyone needs to change one out just for the experience. Anyway...the new one has been in there a little of a month and she got a "light." It appeared in the morning on the first start of the day. I found out that if I shut it down and restarted multiple times, the alternator will start charging and be OK for the rest of the day. When I went under the hood to investigate a possible loose connection, that's when I found out the clutch was not turning when the light came on. This alternator hasn't got more than 200 miles on it. What is the issue with these clutches? Is something that has been a problem with other Calibers? The first alternator was changed out at a local shop. (expensive labor) I didn't have the time to change it myself. however, I installed this new one. Which brings up another question. This was the first time I had really been up under this car. (which I bought for my wife brand new) and saw something that, to me just wasn't right. Around the full perimeter of the oil pan was red RTV extruding out from the oil pan's mating flange. I wouldn't think that the factory would of installed the pan with RTV??? The car has only been in the shop three times, to the dealer twice, one time for the ABS system (sensor) and again for a fuel pump, also many oil changes (warranted) and to an independent shop for the first alternator I've had the oil changed by an independent when the warrantee expired. Is it possible that one of those shops removed the oil pan and for what reason? I did notice that when I removed this past bad alternator the plastic guard around the hot terminal pole was broken and one of ribs for the cooling register was broke and missing.
Norm
I misquoted the mileage on her car...it's 85,000 not 75,000.
 

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Faulty electrical components (especially alternators) from big national chain stores has been a rampant problem for years now...not unusual at all to go through a few reman'd alternators before finding one that actually works. Given how much of a pain it is to replace in the Caliber, you're honestly better off biting the bullet and buying a new OEM or Denso alternator instead of screwing around with the remans.

As for the oil pan "gasket" my Cali certainly doesn't have a bunch of RTV squished out around the perimeter. My first thought is that somebody doing an oil change stripped out the drain bolt hole and either replaced the pan or took off the pan to repair the hole with a helicoil.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Faulty electrical components (especially alternators) from big national chain stores has been a rampant problem for years now...not unusual at all to go through a few reman'd alternators before finding one that actually works. Given how much of a pain it is to replace in the Caliber, you're honestly better off biting the bullet and buying a new OEM or Denso alternator instead of screwing around with the remans.

As for the oil pan "gasket" my Cali certainly doesn't have a bunch of RTV squished out around the perimeter. My first thought is that somebody doing an oil change stripped out the drain bolt hole and either replaced the pan or took off the pan to repair the hole with a helicoil.
Thanks Chris...That's what is probably going to happen. Being a professional technician (aviation) I should of had better judgment and bought an OEM unit. The one I got from
Oreilly's was over two hundred dollars as it was. Addressing the oil pan...I bet you are spot on about it being done at the Dodge dealer during one of its oil change. When they were working the fuel pump problem they had the car a long time and there was an oil change at the time also. I changed the oil (first time I've done it instead of the dealer) at the same time I put the new alternator in, that's when I noticed the RTV. I thought...I wonder if someone had damage the oil pan with the lift when they changed the fuel pump, dropped the pan, repaired it and reinstalled it with RTV, because there was no gasket in stock or the tech didn't want parts to know what happened ??? I didn't bother to look at the drain plug boss to see if it had a helicoil installed. I'll darn sure look at the next oil change. BTW...I could write a book about the fuel pump fiasco. Cost us a wad of money, and further down the line the symptoms never fully went away, until found out that a new set of spark plugs I installed made it all go away. :mad: "If you want it done right...do it yourself!"
Norm
 
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