1982 Buick Lesabre


Active LVC Member
Oct 18, 2005
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I have got a 82 Lesabre with a 4.1L. It will not charge the battery and I have changed the alternator. I heard of a no charge consition if a warning light is out, but I need more info on this. Also someone told me the diodes in the alternator may be bad. Any ideas?
Yea, 3 different batteries, it will start fine but by the time morning comes the car is dead again.
re: your '82 Buick LeSabre electrical system problem


I've also got an '82 Buick LeSabre, but with the 5.0 Olds motor.

Nevertheless, the problem develops in the (main?) wiring harness over
time---this car is 25 years old now, after all. Basically, there are some
"wires" in the harness, called "fusible links" that are "designed" to become
open circuits under certain conditions. With mine, it prevented the
alternator from going into charging mode. I believe that you have the
same or similar problem.

For my car electrical needs, I go to a local place where they do nothing
but rebuild starters and alternators, but also do some installation/diagnostic
work in the optional process of also installing their fresh rebuilt units. My
man there changed the alternator/regulator circuitry such that it bypassed
the regulator and was effectively changed to a "self-excited alternator".
It functioned perfectly ever after.

As built, these Buicks depend on a signal from the regulator, through
the "fusible links" to the alternator to begin charging. When said
"fusible link" burns out, the alternator "never gets the message" . . . and
you're running strictly on battery - - which is why they're alway dying.

Find a place near you that rebuilds starter/alternators/generators IN-
HOUSE. They may even specialize, as many do, in truck, bus, and
heavy equipment starters and alternators. This is the kind of place you
want. Ask them to diagnose the problem, and find out whether they
can do the slight wiring modification on the car's alternator, to make it
a "self-excited" one. Yeah, to some, that sounds "kinky". But it's how
the old-time auto electric guys described certain car electrical system

I wanted to keep mine stock. But the excellent technician talked me
out of it, simply because it would likely take many diagnostic hours in
the shop to find the "burned out section" of the fusible links. The method
that he employed works perfectly, with no drawbacks whatsoever. It
involves taking the alternator off and modifying the internal regulator.

See if this helps.


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