Question about Hyundai Motor 2002 Sonata

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Battery, Alternator Problem 02 Sonata?

My battery died yesterday in my 6cyl. 2002 Hundai Sonata. No problems leading up to it. It just wouldn't start. I removed the battery and took it to Advanced Auto for testing. It was only registering 4 amps so I bought a new battery. I tried installing the new battery that evening in the dark and accidentally installed it backwards with the neg and pos. posts backward (I've installed batteries before without error). This error resulted in a spark and the headlights came on and the truck kept releasing. I then corrected the install. The car started fine and most of the electrical worked. The radio, sunroof, climate control and alarm didn't work and the battery light stayed on, I assumed it was a blown fuse and came to work. I then began losing power when I arrived at work. Did I screw up the alternator? Help please.

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Very possibly damaged the alternator; these have six diodes that rectify the ac produced by the alternator (hence its name) and are oriented to produce a positive output/negative ground.  This means that they will conduct if their output has a relative negative voltage applied to the positive output terminal.
If you haven't done it already, you need to disconnect the battery cable or the shorted diodes will drain it completely again and could even damage the plates from heat. 
Generally, rebuilt alternators are quite reliable so replacing with new isn't really justifiable; the commutators and windings are not stressed hard so replacing brushes and diodes and a good (chemical) bath are about all they need to do to restore them. You may even have a local shop that will restore your own unit if you wish.    

Posted on Oct 03, 2008

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    0e1822c.jpg
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