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1997 Infiniti Q45 Base 97.5 Luxury Performance Sedan

1997 Infiniti Q45
Trim Info:
Rear-Wheel Drive, 4 Door Sedan, Mid-Size
18 mpg city / 24 mpg hwy
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November 7, 2012, 6:42 am


Question: Noise when starting my vehicle....

I sometimes hear a sort of dragging/scratchy noise when turning over my engine. It doesn't happen all the time and there's no specific time when it'll happen, it's consistently random.

I've had two people tell me it sounds to them like my alternator is going out but the times I've had it at my mechanic's for other services he didn't hear what I hear. {figures....sigh}

Is there a way to test my alternator or should I just have it replaced before it goes out on me? It is an original part on my 97 Infiniti Q45 which has over 130k miles on her, so I've no doubt it's about time to do just that but don't want to jump the gun.

November 15, 2012, 7:29 pm

Elizabeth K

No need to replace the alternator unless necessary. The charging system can be tested, but the alternator's ability to charge the battery does not seem to be the issue. Instead, it sounds like someone is telling you that it is an alternator bearing that is wearing out. That is an interesting diagnosis, since that sounds exactly like a belt slipping at times. A mechanic can inspect your serpentine belt, and remove it to test the wear in the alternator bearing, as well as all the other drive bearings. Even if they don't hear the noise, the belt and bearing can be tested. But if you leave it alone, it will get worse, and then they WILL be able to hear it. This particular problem usually gets worse slowly, so that is also a viable option.

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November 16, 2012, 9:47 am


Thank you SO much Elizabeth!! I will take her in to my mechanic and have him do what you suggested.

0/0 users found this helpful.

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