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Old 03-14-2002, 02:58 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 87
Coil & Alternator: How Do They Relate?

Hi all,
I need to know how the coil and the alternator work together . I need to know so i can diagnose my hard start problems -- i have problems starting my car in the morning and my coil happens to get very hot (by feel). My mechanic seems to believe the coil is bad and so could account for the problem (sic)

I am not so technical -minded but i wonder what a coil has to do with my ignition in the morning.


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Old 03-14-2002, 07:45 AM
Matt Crooke
Posts: n/a
The alternator is what produces the 12-14 volts to power the elelctrics in the car and to charge the battery when the engine is running. The coil is effectively a step up transformer. It takes its feed from the alternator, steps the voltage up to about 12000 volts (i think thats about right) which is what is used to produce the spark at the spark plugs. You will notice that on your car there is a lead that runs from the coil, to the distributor. The power is sent from the coil to the distributor, then from the distributor down the 4, 6, 8 or 12 spark plug leads to the spark plugs themselves.

A faulty coil would mean that the plugs arent sparking properly...which is why your car is a nightmare to start in the mornings.

Hope that makes sense!!

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Old 03-14-2002, 03:23 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Austin, Tx
Posts: 713
so... would a new coil with a higher output... 25000 volts be better for ignition? With all the timing a fuel enrichment stuff that has been uncovered recently... perhaps a better spark wouldn't be such a bad idea...

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