Search thousands of topics on CostHelper.com

BROWSE ALL TOPICS >> appliances babies & children  cars  consumer electronics health & personal care home & garden personal finance  pets  schools small business weddings
CostHelper > Cars  > Alternator

Alternator Cost


How Much Does an Alternator Cost?

 
low costAlternator Only: $100-$1,000+average costEasy Access: $200-$1,200+, Parts & Laborhigh costComplex Access: $400-$1,800+, Parts & Labor
post E-mail post Post   Comments (2)

An alternator generates the power needed to operate a vehicle's electrical system and to keep its battery charged. Dim lights, a whining noise or a dashboard warning light (typically shaped like a battery or saying "ALT") may indicate that the alternator is going out.

Typical costs:

  • An alternator produced by a company other than the vehicle manufacturer typically costs $100-$500 or more for just the aftermarket part, depending on the year, make and model of vehicle; and $250-$1,000 or more for one made by the vehicle manufacturer (called an OEM part). Less-expensive alternators may also be rebuilt or remanufactured (rebuilt at a factory).
  • Alternators for foreign vehicles are typically more expensive than those for domestic American cars, and parts for luxury vehicles are typically the most expensive. For example, RepairPal.com[1] estimates the typical cost of an alternator part for a 2008 Toyota Camry at $271-$649; or $995-$1,111 for a 2008 Lexus LS460.
  • On a vehicle where the alternator is located near the top of the engine, providing relatively easy access, replacing the alternator typically requires one to three hours of labor at about $50-$120 an hour, bringing typical total costs for parts and labor to $200-$600 for an aftermarket part or $300-$1,200 for an OEM alternator at a dealership.
  • If the vehicle's alternator is located deep inside the engine, requiring the disconnection and removal of many other parts to reach the alternator, replacing the alternator can take five to eight hours of labor at about $50-$120 an hour, bringing typical total costs for parts and labor to $400-$800 for an aftermarket part or $500-$1,800 for an OEM alternator installed at a car dealership.
  • For example, RepairPal.com[2] estimates that replacing an alternator on a 2008 Toyota Camry 2.4L 4 Cylinder costs $271-$649 for parts and $96-$122 labor in Sacramento, CA or $110-$141 labor in Trenton, NJ, for total costs of $364-$771; and for the same model car but with a 3.5L V6 engine, the part costs the same but labor is estimated at $336-$771, bringing total costs to $596-$1,077.
Related articles: Car Battery, Car Battery Charger, Starter Motor Replacement, Tune-up, Towing a Car

What should be included:
  • HowStuffWorks.com lists symptoms of alternator problems[3] .
  • Replacing an alternator requires disconnecting the battery, disconnecting the belts and wires attached to the alternator and removing the bolts that secure the alternator to the vehicle. On many cars this is a relatively straightforward process that takes a couple of hours of work. However, on a few cars the alternator is difficult to reach inside the engine, and requires removing multiple parts and wires before the alternator can be disconnected and removed. It all depends on the make and model of vehicle, and how it is put together.
  • AutoMD.com explains how to replace an alternator[4] , estimating that in general this a moderately complex project that takes about 2.1 hours.
Additional costs:
  • When replacing the alternator, it's a good idea to check the condition of the serpentine belt, which winds through the front of the engine in a snake-like manner, bringing power to the alternator and other accessories. If the serpentine belt is chipped or cracked and needs replacing, it can add $25-$75 or more to the total cost.
Shopping for an alternator:
  • Before replacing the alternator, make sure it is causing the problem. The Family Handyman magazine explains how to test the battery and alternator[5] to determine which one is not working properly.
  • Alternator replacement can be done at a car dealership, an independent repair shop, or car-repair chains like Pep Boys[6] or Sears[7] . Both the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence[8] and the International Automotive Technicians Network[9] provide a searchable directory of repair shops.
  • Consumer Reports lists tips for finding a good mechanic[10] .
post E-mail post Post   Comments (2)
CostHelper News


Top 7 Ways to Trim Pet Expenses
Pets, for many, are part of the family; another member that needs love, feeding and treatment, just like anyone else in the household. || Posted September 18 2013


Forgotten Expenses In a Home Addition Budget
Items like construction costs, permit fees or debris removal aren't the only expenses to consider when calculating the total costs of a home remodeling project. || Posted August 5 2013

‣ All CostHelper Blog Posts


What People Are Paying - Recent Comments
Alternator and serpentine belt for 2007 Chrysler 300 in Sacramento,ca
Amount: $436.00
Posted by: Fabian Harris in Sacramento, CA.Posted: March 2nd, 2017 06:03PM
Car Make: ChryslerCar Model: 300
Car Year: 2007Auto Shop: Broadway
$135 for labor the rest for belt, alternator, and taxes
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
replacing alternator
Amount: $502.00
Posted by: amanda s in olathe, KS.Posted: February 28th, 2015 06:02AM
Car Year: 2000Auto Shop: robert brogden
Alternator is costing me $502 for parts and labor, my dad told me to go ahead and get taken care of, but others are saying I've been charged too much. I dont know if I am doing the right thing?
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam


 

Comment On Your Experience With an Alternator
 
Subject:  *
Amount Spent:  *
Car Make: Car Model: 
Car Year: Auto Shop: 
Comments: 
Purchased:  Year: 
City:  * State:  *
 
Information about you:
Email:  * Email addresses are not displayed.
Name:  This is the name we'll display with your post.
me on this computer
*=required field.
 



External Resources:
  1.  repairpal.com/estimator
  2.  repairpal.com/estimator
  3.  auto.howstuffworks.com/under-the-hood/diagnosing-car-problems/mechanical/5-signs-altern...
  4.  www.automd.com/13/how-to-replace-an-alternator/
  5.  www.familyhandyman.com/DIY-Projects/Car---Truck/Auto-Repair/how-to-replace-an-alternator
  6.  storelocator.pepboys.com/pepboys/
  7.  www.sears.com/automotive/v-1020005
  8.  www.ase.com/Landing-Pages/Car-Owners/Find-a-Repair-Shop/Shop-Locator.aspx
  9.  autorepair.iatn.net/
  10.  www.consumerreports.org/cro/2012/12/how-to-find-a-great-car-mechanic/index.htm
More Cars Topics
Check Out All Costs for Cars How Much Do Brakes Cost? How Much Does Windshield Replacement and Repair Cost? How Much Does Wheel Alignment Cost?

Search Thousands of Topics on CostHelper.com

 
Today's Featured Cost Articles

About CostHelper
CostHelper is based in Silicon Valley and provides consumers with unbiased price information about thousands of goods and services. Our writers are experienced journalists who adhere to our strict editorial ethics policy.

CostHelper Community
General Cleaning except windows and VCT
Paid: 0.00
Going rates can vary. However, your best advice is to stay below prices like Service Master or some big franchise charges. In general their help isn't that bright or speaks no English... [more]
-Gary Honey
Office Cleaning Cost
Dental Implants
Paid: 72000.00
Why do full dental implants cost more than purchasing a condominium?... [more]
-Jack Sprat
Dental Implants Cost
Clogged toilet to main line clean out
Paid: 465.00
Came out and pulled toilet ( took a whole 5 minutes)and ran his drain cleaning machine 75ft. to clear out clog which took about 15 minutes or so. Put on new wax ring and toilet back in place... [more]
-
Unclogging a Toilet Cost
Houston Flood
Paid: 450.00
never flooded, not in flood plain but just had 34 inches of rain in 5 days, huge flood 5 minutes away, hoping costs don't increase and that new maps won't include us in flood plain$250,000 building, $100,000 contents, $1250 deductible... [more]
-Thankfully Dry
Flood Insurance Cost
Ear Wax Removal
Paid: 1100.00
Yes, just got the bill! I paid my copay at my visit... [more]
-Michelle S.
Ear Wax Removal Cost
Scamming in Detroit
Paid: 410.00
My husband and I went to a sporting event on the Wayne State Campus. We parked in what was apparently a non-campus location. There were no signs stating that we couldn't park there, so we took advantage of the spot. Bad on us... [more]
-Kris Starosta
Recovering a Towed Vehicle Cost