Auto Service World
News   September 28, 2009   by Auto Service World

New Website Examines Changes in Alternator Pulley Technology

A comprehensive new Web site has been launched to help automotive parts professionals and technicians avoid expensive comebacks associated with the use of the wrong alternator pulley technology on late-model vehicles.

The new site ( provides detailed technical information and live video to help automotive professionals identify which alternator pulley design is needed for a specific application. Millions of late-model applications from Toyota, Chrysler, General Motors and other automakers are now equipped with overrunning alternator decouplers (OAD) that help enhance engine efficiency and reduce noise, vibration and harshness. Failure to install a replacement alternator featuring the identical technology on one of these vehicles could severely damage the belt-drive system.

“To many automotive professionals and alternator rebuilders, one pulley might seem to be the same as the next – and they often do look alike from the outside,” said Chuck Pullins, market consultant to Litens Automotive. “But there are significant internal design differences between an OAD decoupler, one-way clutch and solid pulley – differences that can cause expensive repair problems.”

In addition to enhancing engine efficiency, OAD decoupler pulleys – also known as “isolator decoupler pulleys” (IDP) – enable the alternator to “coast” freely in cases of sudden belt deceleration. Applications originally designed to use an OAD decoupler pulley are not compatible with any other pulley design. Parts professionals and technicians are urged to confirm that their supplier always uses an OAD decoupler on alternators designed for these applications.

The Web site also features an interactive electronic catalogue and dealer locater tool to help users quickly identify and source the right replacement pulley for domestic and import applications.  Genuine OAD decoupler pulleys are now available through a variety of aftermarket sources, including leading national alternator and belt manufacturers and distributors.

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