2001 Continental Alternator Replacement

Lincoln Continental

  1. jrdnhsnbrg

    jrdnhsnbrg Active LVC Member

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    Hey guys, I have a very powerful sound system in my continental to the extent of needing a high output alternator and have installed it myself, and figured I'd do a quick write up on how to do it.

    First of all, you'll want to put the car up on ramps and disconnect the battery. Will make it much easier to work on as it will be closer to torso height.

    You need to remove the coolant overflow reservoir in order to get the alternator out. The power steering reservoir can just be unscrewed from the coolant reservoir and pulled off to the side. After that is done there should be two screws holding the coolant reservoir in place. Unscrew them. Disconnect the upper coolant reservoir tube, it's very small, and pull it off to the side as well. This should get you enough room to get a pliers in there to get the PITA hose clamps off with a pliers. I replaced this one in particular with a screw style hose clamp. Before removing the hose make sure you've relieved the pressure in the system by taking the cap off the reservoir. Have your drain pan at the ready and remove the hose. Disconnect the coolant level sensor and remove the tank.

    Now for the fun part. This is much easier to do with two people, one to hold the serpentine belt tensioner bar and one to unbolt the alternator. Ford was smart with their design and used all 10mm bolts and nuts to hold the alternator in. Go ahead and disconnect the +12V and voltage regulator plug from the alternator. There is one screw holding the +12V wire in place, unscrew it and route the wire out of your way. Now insert the end of the tensioner tool onto the tensioner and unloop the serpentine belt from the alternator. DO NOT REMOVE THE TENSIONER TOOL FROM THE TENSIONER. Go ahead and just let the tool rest on the strut tower mount area for the time being. Unscrew the two bolts and two nuts on the black bracket on the top of the alternator and remove the bracket. There are two 10mm bolts on the bottom of the alternator holding it in place, the tensioner tool is in the way of the bolt closest to the front. Have a friend hold the tensioner tool all the way towards the front so you have access to the bolts and loosen them. They don't have to be completely removed.

    Actually getting the alternator out can take a bit of fiddling and wiggling but it can be done. Reinstalling the alternator is just the reverse process.

    Any questions, feel free to post them here. I've swapped my alternator twice now since May, the second time only took me 45 minutes to remove it, and that was taking my time.
     
  2. cadillacdude

    cadillacdude LVC Member

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    Dont need a ramp though. The most time.consuming part is reinStalling the belt
     
  3. jrdnhsnbrg

    jrdnhsnbrg Active LVC Member

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    Ramps are not necessary but are very helpful. Putting a new serpentine belt on was definitely the most difficult task.
     
  4. dfoy50

    dfoy50 Active LVC Member

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    just out of curiosity what size alt was in there? im thinking 130 amp was oem . and what size did you replace it with?
     
  5. cadillacdude

    cadillacdude LVC Member

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    Cant remember, but the system was designed to run @ greater than 13.9v. Anything below that and the battery light will come on but the car will still run and the battery will still charge.
     
  6. jrdnhsnbrg

    jrdnhsnbrg Active LVC Member

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    My voltage drops below 13.9V regularly and the only time the battery light has come on was when the alternator actually died. It doesn't go off voltage. Due to the sound system I can get it to drop below 12V quite easily and the battery light does not come on.
     
  7. jrdnhsnbrg

    jrdnhsnbrg Active LVC Member

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    Stock alternator was 130a, I installed a 275a Singer alternator.
     
  8. dfoy50

    dfoy50 Active LVC Member

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    thanks i was just wondering , i heard the the electrical systems are very sensitive . im also interested in the led switchback turn signal , it might be a month or so befor i think about doing it , i just had to replace the rack and pinion , what a job ! thank you, Drew .
     

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