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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 2011 Juke SL which I bought new in 2011 and now has 91,000 miles. About a year and a half ago, I had alternator issues (idling at stop light and then upon accelerating the dash lights flicker/flash and the radio cuts in and out, and the typical alternator whine when it is not happy). This happened intermittently. Sometimes fairly soon after starting up, sometimes not until 30 minutes or more into a drive). The dash light for the alternator has never come on. Ever.

So, I took it to an auto parts store and they tested the battery/alternator/starter. Said it was a bad alternator. I took it to a local fix it shop (am new to area, don't know anyone, went off Yelp review). They put in a new alternator. Same exact problem. I took it back two or three times, but it would not act up while I was at the repair shop (of course). Finally got so sick of if that I threw a bit of a fit and they replaced the alternator, again, this time for free.

Repair shop told me the problem is caused because the turbo charger is leaking oil and it is dripping on the alternator. I asked if the turbocharger uses the same oil as the engine, or if it is a closed system. (Guess who used to have a Grand Prix with a turbo charger?) They were not expecting that question from a grown up girl. They said it is the same oil that goes through the engine. But I have never, ever been low on oil. I just don't believe this is the problem. There is no oil spot in the garage. I check my oil a lot, and it have never been low, not even a little bit. Oil change guys all say it is full of oil.

And... still having the exact same problem with the new alternator.

My dad thinks it might be a relay switch. Maybe? I also did some research and think (hope) it could be a fuse issue. I will crack the fuse box open tomorrow, as that is cheap and easy. Any other thoughts? Anyone else have this?

Oh, one more thing, when I have the alternator tested while it is acting up, it shows that the alternator is bad. If it is tested while not acting up, it tests fine. That said, I am not 100% convinced the kid at the auto parts store knows what he is doing or the guys at the repair shop are completely honest.

Thanks for any thoughts that you can send my way.
 

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Welcome to the forums! The Juke has a unique charging system. The alternator output is controlled by the ECU only when there is a load demand. If the Juke is just idling or cruising and battery voltage is acceptable to the ECU, the alternator will test as "bad" because there's no need to charge.

No your turbo is not leaking oil on the alternator. The two are not near each other at all. Alternator is towards the front left side of the engine and the turbo is centered back behind the engine. There is the upper air intercooler pipe that connects the outlet of the compressor to the intercooler and passes right over the alternator. If that was leaking, you might see maybe a drop or two of oil around the house coupler, but you'd be experiencing other drive issues if that was leaking there. It's normal to see a little oil coming out of the turbo. The bearings may leak a little especially with a higher mileage turbo, but could also be recovered oil vapor from the crankcase.

I would recommend you change the battery, especially if the battery is more than 3-4 years old or the original factory battery. If you are still experiencing electrical issues, then there could be a short somewhere that appears on acceleration only.
 

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The Alternator MUST be a Nissan OEM unit. If it isnt. It will not charge your Juke correctly.

There is a possibility that the timing chain /valve cover is leaking onto the alternator or the turbo oil feed line is leaking onto the valve cover and making its way to the alternator. As stated above. Not the Turbo.

post some pics please.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for your help, squirtbrnr. I did just get a new battery, and no change in the alternator symptoms. Oil level still good. Electrical issues sound like it's time to trade cars! Thanks, Jennifer

Welcome to the forums! The Juke has a unique charging system. The alternator output is controlled by the ECU only when there is a load demand. If the Juke is just idling or cruising and battery voltage is acceptable to the ECU, the alternator will test as "bad" because there's no need to charge.

No your turbo is not leaking oil on the alternator. The two are not near each other at all. Alternator is towards the front left side of the engine and the turbo is centered back behind the engine. There is the upper air intercooler pipe that connects the outlet of the compressor to the intercooler and passes right over the alternator. If that was leaking, you might see maybe a drop or two of oil around the house coupler, but you'd be experiencing other drive issues if that was leaking there. It's normal to see a little oil coming out of the turbo. The bearings may leak a little especially with a higher mileage turbo, but could also be recovered oil vapor from the crankcase.

I would recommend you change the battery, especially if the battery is more than 3-4 years old or the original factory battery. If you are still experiencing electrical issues, then there could be a short somewhere that appears on acceleration only.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The Alternator MUST be a Nissan OEM unit. If it isnt. It will not charge your Juke correctly.

There is a possibility that the timing chain /valve cover is leaking onto the alternator or the turbo oil feed line is leaking onto the valve cover and making its way to the alternator. As stated above. Not the Turbo.

post some pics please.

Macgyver,
I don't think the alternator is a Nissan OEM, but I can look at the info from the repair shop to see. It is doing the exact same thing it did with the original alternator.

What do you want pics of? The alternator? Anything else?

Also, was looking at the fuses today, and something seems a bit odd - like there is one missing, and another was replaced by a regular size fuse and not a mini. The thing is, I have never messed with that before, and other than having the alternator changed (twice) my car has never had any other type of service at a repair shop.

Thanks for your help,
Jennifer
 

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Just my personal experience after owning vehicles for almost 30 years... I don't trust alternator shops.

I was into building and installing aftermarket car audio and used many differeny alternator shops. It's almost always in-house "remanufactured" parts. They often are willing to rebuild alternators for higher output (which is possible) but their quality of work and the amount of corners they cut have been horrible in my experience.

It would be hard to prove, but it wouldn't surprise me if the alternator shop is responsible for the fuse issues you see and that you actually still have your original alternator (probably taken apart and checked and reassembled).

Personally, with newer vehicles and their complexity and diagnostic requirements, I only have service done at dealerships. It might be more expensive and you still need to watch out for their work and "recommended" service suggestions. But it's worth it for the peace of mind and accountability.

My take on your current situation is that the alternator is fine, and has probably always been fine. There is no "alternator" light or anything similar on the juke. Because everything is controlled electronically through the ecu, bcm, or tcu, the system would throw a generic check engine light. Maybe. To me it sounds like a wiring/ground issue. Tighten up the existing ground wire to the chassis and engine, and if you want to really shotgun it, add another chassis ground to see if it helps the issue (since that is a cheap and easy solution). Otherwise, it sounds like a bad wire harness or ecu/bcm connection which is very difficult to diagnose accurately. Wiggle some wires, tighten them down, see if it helps. If not the I would suggest taking to a Nissan dealership.

Good luck!
 
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