Alternator Installation Issues
1. While each alternator series may have some varied installation issues, the following guidelines should be considered when installing any Balmar alternator:
2. Ensure, prior to installation, that the Balmar replacement alternator features a compatible mounting configuration to the alternator being replaced. See information above.
3. Ensure that the replacement alternator is adequately sized to meet the demands of your battery banks. As a rule of thumb, the alternator should be rated at 25% of your house battery capacity.
4. Ensure that the belt or belts driving the alternator are capable of handling the alternator’s horsepower load. As a rule, a single 3/8" belt is capable of supporting up to 80 amps@12 volts, and a single 1/2" belt can support 100-amp@12-volts. Dual belts will typically support alternator outputs of up to 300+ amps/12 volts. Driving an alternator on an undersized belt will substantially increase the risk of belt slippage and premature belt failure. All 24-volt Balmar alternators require a minimum of dual 1/2” belts for optimal performance. Balmar offers a wide selection of AltMount serpentine pulley kits for marine diesel engines. Visit the Balmar website for more information and application charts.
5. Balmar alternators are designed to be used in conjunction with external P-type regulators. We recommend the Balmar multi-stage regulator for maximum charging performance. Certain Balmar alternators, designated as SR or Smart Ready®, feature a single-stage internal regulator. Those alternators can be controlled by either the internal, or an external voltage regulator. Please note that the internal regulator must be disabled when an external regulator is being used.
6. All Balmar alternators, unless otherwise noted, are equipped with isolated grounding terminals. Isolated ground alternator installations MUST include a dedicated cable connecting the alternator ground terminal to system ground. The ground cable must be equal in size to the alternator’s positive output cable, and must meet the cable gauge requirements outlined in the cable size chart shown on Page 3.
7. Belt tension is a critical aspect of alternator performance. Monitor belt tension after every charge cycle for the first several weeks of engine operation. We recommend a belt tensioning gauge for accurate deflection measurement. Make belt tension monitoring and adjustment a part of regular maintenance