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Old 08-17-2013, 08:13 AM   #1
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Upgraded Alternator Wiring Question

I have a 95 wrangler with a 4.0, 5 speed, I use it to plow in the winter and last winter the lights like most stock plow vehicles got very dim when u were out for a while and when I stalled sometimes was a bear to get started. I bought a new 150 amp Alternator to replace my stock 90 amp. Will I need to replace the wiring going to the battery with a bigger gauge wire. I have no idea how it works with vehicle wiring but I do know in residential electric, the more amps the thicker gauge wire you need. Any Help Would Be Appreciated.

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-Justin

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Old 08-17-2013, 08:21 AM   #2
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it might not be necessary but it sure would not hurt anything.it would cost almost nothing and only take a few minutes

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Old 08-17-2013, 09:04 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 95YJ_in_NEPA View Post
I have a 95 wrangler with a 4.0, 5 speed, I use it to plow in the winter and last winter the lights like most stock plow vehicles got very dim when u were out for a while and when I stalled sometimes was a bear to get started. I bought a new 150 amp Alternator to replace my stock 90 amp. Will I need to replace the wiring going to the battery with a bigger gauge wire. I have no idea how it works with vehicle wiring but I do know in residential electric, the more amps the thicker gauge wire you need. Any Help Would Be Appreciated.

Thanks
-Justin
It really would be good to replace them. I'd go with 4ga OFC braided cable for the alt-batt, batt-gnd, & batt-pdc. I would also look into a dual battery setup, or at least a top-notch battery.

Go get a kawasaki mule and blade, they move snow like a dream and won't wear and tear your jeep. And they are a ton of fun on some smaller trails.
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Old 08-17-2013, 02:42 PM   #4
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Thanks for the responses. Yea I would get one of those toys if I wasent still in high school. The jeep is a beast plowing. What is the biggest battery you think I could stick in there?
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Old 08-17-2013, 10:33 PM   #5
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You can do "the big three" its when you replace both battery negative cables with 0/1 gauge wire and replace the battery positive to alt cable with 0/1 gauge wire. It helps with high current draw. And is used in the car audio world.

As for a battery, the optima yellow top will work
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Old 08-18-2013, 01:28 PM   #6
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The biggest battery that will fit without modifications is the factory Group 34 size. About the most powerful/best battery I'm aware of is the Group 34 Sears Diehard Platinum 34-78DT which is an AGM (shock & vibration resistant) style battery.

And a 160 amp alternator will rarely put out more amperes than the factory alternator does, because it only puts out as many amperes as being called for by the battery via the voltage regulator. A nearly dead battery will be calling for a lot of amps but in normal situations, it won't be putting out anywhere near its max capacity.

A 160 amp alternator is like having a car that has a 160 mph top speed. It can go that fast but normally won't be going anywhere near that fast.
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Old 08-18-2013, 02:42 PM   #7
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Thanks for everything I definitely learn alot for this site. Lol
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Old 08-21-2013, 09:12 PM   #8
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I upgraded my stock 117 to a 160 and it helped tremendously. My lights don't dim at idle anymore. They're higher wattage h4 upgrades and my factory fogs are 100w bulbs. I can even turn in both pairs of 130w kc lights and they all stay bright. I have done the big 3 as well...
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Old 08-23-2013, 09:22 AM   #9
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I was at advanced auto yesterday and the guy was telling me the wiring doesn't make a difference. I don't know much about car wiring but I know in house hold wiring if u put bigger amps in a smaller gauge wire it will hear up and eventually melt.
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Old 08-23-2013, 10:18 AM   #10
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As explained in post #6 above, a higher output alternator will very rarely (if ever) put out more amperes than the stock alternator does. The only time it could would be if the battery was completely dead & the alternator was recharging it, or if you're winching a very heavy load & the winch is pulling/working extra hard.
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Old 08-23-2013, 10:45 AM   #11
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Quote:
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I was at advanced auto yesterday and the guy was telling me the wiring doesn't make a difference. I don't know much about car wiring but I know in house hold wiring if u put bigger amps in a smaller gauge wire it will hear up and eventually melt.
Do you prefer to drink your milk shake with a coffee stirring straw or a regular straw?
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Old 08-23-2013, 10:58 AM   #12
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Quote:
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I was at advanced auto yesterday and the guy was telling me the wiring doesn't make a difference. I don't know much about car wiring but I know in house hold wiring if u put bigger amps in a smaller gauge wire it will hear up and eventually melt.
Wiring makes a bigger difference than an increase in potential amps for 95% of people, even more so on our 20y.o. YJs than newer makes. If you are going to draw higher amps, you really need to upgrade the wiring. As stated previously, the power draw is determined by the load, not the source.

I upgraded my wiring, not my battery or alternator, as well as running a direct feed to my lights, and have noticed fantastic improvements in light quantity and power consistency as a whole.

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As explained in post #6 above, a higher output alternator will very rarely (if ever) put out more amperes than the stock alternator does. The only time it could would be if the battery was completely dead & the alternator was recharging it, or if you're winching a very heavy load & the winch is pulling/working extra hard.
You forgot inverters, too. I used to run a leece-Neville 400A alternator to keep up with my battery banks. That was also for a mobile business, though, that ran far more amps than any jeep could ever need.
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Old 08-23-2013, 11:01 AM   #13
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Its a YJ jerry....a group 65 diesel battery will fit just fine with no Mods

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