So, the battery light (alternator) came on, and stayed on Wednesday afternoon. Pretty well told me what to do next... lol
Called a rebuilder but can't wait on him. Looked at used, then have mine rebuilt... Decided it best to do O'reilly's limited lifetime route. $140 and 15 minutes in the parking lot, She's happy to go another round.
Among gingerly bathing my idler pulleys, belt, etc... Discovered in more reading that it may help running a ground wire from the passenger side battery. That's the battery that shows less capabilities in a load test. May as well run a switch for the glow plugs too being that I'm near the gulf coast; they aren't really called for, save the two months or so of what we call winter.
It won't move fore-aft, so you wouldn't see the track shift. It's just going to slow down imperceptibly. But if it's the result of a bad tensioner, you'd see the belt going slack, or the tensioner NOT moving, or a puff of dust/smoke/rubber powder when the belt slips.Then look on & around the harmonic balancer. If it's slipping, you should WASH the belt & pulleys. Start with the engine off, and use a long-handled brush to get as much of the belt grooves (on the belt AND on the pulleys) as you can, using SimpleGreen/PurplePower and LOTS of water. Then start it, but skip the brush this time.
The belt drive system all looks good. Tensioner in good shape too. They are in need of a good cleaning. May as well put a new belt on, putting the old one in the tool box.
It's dangerous, but I sometimes use a wire brush on the pulleys with the engine idling if there's heavy rust or thick varnish. I don't hold the brush firmly (so my hand doesn't go with it if it gets into the belt), and I don't put my head in line with the belt (so a flying brush doesn't bounce of my skull). But I still don't recommend it. It's much safer, and only takes a little more time to drop the belt and deglaze the pulleys with the engine stopped.
You'll understand, Steve, I laughed hard at this! I could see this being done and ending very bad. Lol
I'm in no rush so, will take my time. My truck, she's suffering from that rusty colored gunk all over the pulleys and idlers. Plus, the idlers are caramel colored now. Can't be beneficial so, off it'll come!
The slip ring and brushes will go bad about every 100,000 miles. Getting a rebuilt alternator is a real crapshoot, and when mine neededrebuild I tried to buy a new Ford one and even they were rebuilt. Consider rebuilding your own. I got the rebuild kit for $30.00 give or take, and it worked great.
Mine had a couple of burnt diodes too. I did look into doing this and it would have cost me the same to have my buddies shop rebuild it for me. :/
Appreciate you folks tolerating my speculations. Glad I asked before throwing parts at it, on my own hunches.