What is the difference between an electric motor and an alternator?

is that alternator is an electric generator which produces alternating current through mechanical means while motor is a machine or device that converts any form of energy into mechanical energy, or imparts motion.

Is an alternator the same as an electric motor?

The humble automotive alternator hides an interesting secret. Known as the part that converts power from internal combustion into the electricity needed to run everything else, they can also themselves be used as an electric motor.

Can a motor be used as an alternator?

Any electromechanical machine can be converted from one to another i.e, motor can be converted to alternator and vice-versa. If you can make slip go negative i.e, between -1 and 0, you can convert an AC motor to an alternator.

Can you run an alternator with an electric motor?

You can use a DC motor to drive an alternator in order to invert a DC energy supply into AC. … Some of the electrical energy used in running the attached electric motor would be consumed in overcoming this magnetic resistance. Both the motor and the alternator have other losses too, such as windage and friction.

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What type of motor is an alternator?

An alternator is a type of electric generator used in modern automobiles to charge the battery and to power the electrical system when its engine is running. Until the 1960s, automobiles used DC dynamo generators with commutators.

Do alternators create AC or DC?

Car batteries operate on one-way direct current (DC) electricity, while alternators output alternating current (AC) electricity, which occasionally flows in reverse. [6] So prior to going to the voltage regulator, power intended for the battery goes through a diode rectifier to turn into DC.

Can I use an alternator to generate electricity?

Yes, alternators generate electricity most efficiently when driven by an internal combustion engine. Their application in a motor vehicle is common. Also as a stationary power source to charge batteries for off the grid power. … The alternator requires more than 3000 rpm to produce power.

What is the minimum RPM of a 12v car alternator?

As was stated before, most alternators prefer a minimum speed of 2,400 rpm.

How much horsepower is required to turn an alternator?

How much power does it take to run an alternator? An alternator typically takes about 1 HP (horse power) for every 25 amps of power generated. So, a 100 amp alternator will require about 4 HP at full output. Most alternators do not operate at full output for very long.

How much does an alternator cost?

Waits says the average price to replace an alternator with a remanufactured one is $400, while Gunning adds that a remanufactured alternator on a typical, domestic car, costs about $300 to $500, including parts and labor. The price of a new alternator can run from $500 to $1,000.

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Does it matter which direction an alternator spins?

Alternators are directional (technically). Having said that, it doesn’t matter what direction you turn them to the mechanicals of the alternator except for the cooling fan. Common automotive alternators produce synchronized (120 Degree intervals) 3 Phase AC Current.

How much torque is needed to turn an alternator?

Just for a point of reference, a standard automotive alternator puts out 60A @ 14V = 840W. 1hp = 746W, so it takes over one hp to turn your car’s alternator to full output, not counting losses in heat or the belts…

What causes an alternator to fail?

Bad diodes are a common cause of alternator failure. The diodes are part of the rectifier assembly that converts the alternator’s AC output to DC. … A leaky diode also can allow current to drain out of the battery through the alternator when the vehicle is not being driven.

How do I know when my alternator is bad?

7 Signs of a Failing Alternator

  1. Dim or Overly Bright Lights. …
  2. Dead Battery. …
  3. Slow or Malfunctioning Accessories. …
  4. Trouble Starting or Frequent Stalling. …
  5. Growling or Whining Noises. …
  6. Smell of Burning Rubber or Wires. …
  7. Battery Warning Light on Dash.


Can a car run with a bad alternator?

Can a car run with a bad alternator? A car can only run for a short time with a failed alternator. The alternator charges the battery when the engine is running and, once the battery is depleted, the vehicle will die and fail to restart.