The car generator, due to its constant kinematic connection with a running power unit, is the main source of current generation for the on-board network. The connecting link between the engine and the generator is the belt, when loosening, the battery is undercharged, and in the event of a break, the power supply to the machine will provide the battery, and for a short time. Therefore, it is so important to monitor the performance of the generator and all its components, and when the first signs of malfunctions appear, promptly eliminate them.
Any car generator consists of the following components:
Its principle of operation is quite simple: when the rotor rotates, excitation arises in its winding, which leads to the generation of a magnetic field. The stator converts this magnetic field into alternating current, the diode bridge converts alternating current into direct current, and the voltage regulator monitors that the output parameters of the generator are stable regardless of the frequency with which the engine crankshaft rotates. Note that when the engine is started, the operation of all vehicle systems, and above all the starting system, is provided by the battery, but as soon as the crankshaft speed reaches a certain value, the power circuit in the battery is switched to the generator.
Normally, the generator is always able to provide electricity to all consumers, plus recharge the battery. But if any of its nodes starts to work unstably, there will be no more electricity to maintain the battery charge, and it will eventually be discharged. To prevent this from happening, it is necessary to monitor the condition of the generator, periodically checking the voltage level that it outputs to the battery.
The appearance of a characteristic whistle from the engine compartment, especially with an increase in engine speed, may indicate a weakening of the tension of the alternator drive belt. This is the first sign that the generator is not working at full capacity, which means that over time there will be problems with the battery and engine descent. A broken belt is fraught with a blackout of the car, as well as breakdowns or wear of other generator components.
The manufacturer recommends installing only original belts (catalog number - 7700101261). This does not mean that it is necessary to follow these recommendations, the main condition is the coincidence of the belt length. The size of the Renault Symbol alternator belt may vary depending on the vehicle configuration - for example, with air conditioning and power steering it will be longer (1750 mm), without them - shorter (1110 mm).
The car generator requires much less attention from the car owner than the battery, but its role cannot be underestimated - the car cannot drive without it. Therefore, it is so important to be able to notice in time the signs that indicate the beginning of problems with this node. And many of these problems can be fixed by yourself.
According to the technical documentation of Kia Ceed, the drive belt must be replaced after 45,000-60,000 km. But in reality, its service life may be significantly less, due to factors that do not always depend on the driver.
Experienced drivers are well aware that the first sign of a loose Kia Ceed alternator belt is a whistle coming from the engine compartment, especially when you press the accelerator pedal or turn on a "heavy" consumer of electricity such as high beam headlights.
Problems with the belt or alternator may also be indicated by other signs, for example, the light comes on about the lack of battery charge. To make sure that the belt is loose, you need to manually measure its tension, and if it deflects by more than 5 mm, then a tightening procedure is necessary.
The need to replace the belt will be evidenced by such defects found during visual inspection as cracks on the outside, abrasions of a large area, exposure of the cord, frayed edges of the belt.
If you are used to doing everything according to the manual, then first you must determine the current belt tension, and not "by eye", but with the help of a special device - a tensometer or voltage meter. For a new belt, a value of 70-80 kgf is considered normal, for a worn one - 50-60 kgf.
Too low tension causes the belt to slip, and this phenomenon is always accompanied by a sharp and characteristic whistle. But overdoing it with tension is also bad: this will lead to premature wear of the pump bearings and the generator itself.
On the Kia Ceed, the tension of the alternator belt is carried out using the adjusting bolt B, for which you first need to loosen the mounting bolts of the alternator A, and after tightening the belt to the levels described above, tighten the fastening bolts with a torque of 19.5 -26.5 Nm (for a 12 mm bolt) and 29.5-41.3 Nm for a 14 mm bolt.
When tensioning the belt, be sure to assess its condition, but its critical wear is not always accompanied by weakening and whistling. Therefore, it is necessary to check the belt more often, and if significant defects are found on it, it is not worth pulling with a replacement. The manufacturer recommends a visual inspection of the drive belt every 30 thousand km, but in the harsh Russian conditions it is recommended to do this twice as often. Because no matter how strong the belt is, it is susceptible to deformation under negative temperatures, when exposed to aggressive liquids such as gasoline or engine oil, as a result of insufficient or excessive tension, when the pulleys and rollers are displaced.