How to Change the Alternator for Hyundai Cars

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

The alternator in a Hyundai car is a generator that powers all of the electrical equipment in the car. The alternator uses a rotor, copper wire and brushes to create an electrical charge. This electrical charge recharges the battery and powers everything else in the Hyundai car in the process. Over time, the brushes and wires can become corroded or the rotor can burn out. This will cause the alternator to fail. When this happens, you'll typically be able to know indirectly as the battery light on the dash will illuminate. While this could indicate a dead battery, more often than not it indicates that the alternator has died and that it must be changed.

Under The Hood:

 How to Change the Alternator for a Hyundai Elantra

Open the hood of the Hyundai Elantra; prop up the hood.

Disconnect the negative battery terminal with a wrench.

Pull up on the belt and remove it from the alternator.

Remove the two electrical connectors from the alternator. One is held on with a nut that you can remove with a ratchet; the other is an electrical connector that requires you to press down on a tab and pull the connector straight out.

Remove with a ratchet the two long alternator bolts that secure the alternator and thread into the engine block. Remove the alternator from the engine.

Install the new alternator onto the engine and thread in the bolts. Tighten the bolts with a ratchet.

Reconnect the two electrical connectors onto the new alternator.

Place the alternator belt back onto the alternator, and tighten the belt tensioner with a wrench or ratchet. Tighten the alternator belt to half an inch of belt deflection. If you would like to be precise, place a ruler against the belt perpendicularly and see how far down you can push it. If you can push the belt down more than half an inch, tighten the belt some more; then tighten the lock nut to keep the belt tensioned.

Items you will need

  • Wrenches

  • Ratchet

  • Sockets

  • Alternator

  • Ruler (optional)

 How to Change the Alternator on a 2003 Hyundai Tiburon

Disconnect the negative battery terminal from the battery to avoid the risk of electric shock. Locate the alternator, which is on the lower half of the engine block on the passenger side of the vehicle.

Lift the spring-loaded pulley tensioner to remove the drive belt from the alternator.

Place a car jack under the frame on the passenger side of the Tiburon and lift up the front passenger side until the wheel comes off the ground. Place car blocks behind the rear tires to prevent the vehicle from shifting backwards.

Remove the lug nuts from the front passenger side wheel with a lug nut wrench. Remove the wheel. Locate the screws holding the slash guard in place. Remove these screws and set the splash guard aside.

Use a ball joint tool to disconnect the tie rod spindle. Remove the exhaust pipe connectors with a ratchet and socket, and move the exhaust pipe aside.

Disconnect the cables and wire connectors from the faulty alternator. Remove the bolts securing the alternator to the Tiburon. Position the new alternator and replace the bolts. Reconnect the electrical wire connectors and cables.

Reconnect the exhaust pipe and the tie rod spindle. Replace the splash guard and screw it in place to secure it to the vehicle. Replace the wheel and tighten the lug nuts. Lower the car jack and remove the car blocks from behind the rear wheels.

Lift up on the pulley tensioner to replace the drive belt on the new alternator. Reconnect the negative battery terminal. Turn the ignition on the Hyundai to test the new alternator.

Items you will need

  • Car jack

  • Car blocks

  • Lug nut wrench

  • Screwdriver

  • Ratchet

  • Socket set

  • Replacement alternator

 How to Change the Alternator on a Hyundai Tiburon

Disconnect the negative battery terminal and then remove the drive belt from the pulley on the front part of the alternator. The drive belt tensioner is spring loaded and can be lifted upwards to free the drive belt.

Jack the vehicle up so that you have complete access to the passenger side wheel. Remove the wheel by loosening and removing the lug nuts with the lug nut wrench. Use the screwdrivers to remove the screws along the lip of the fender splash guard and then remove the splash guard itself.

Disconnect the tie rod spindle with the ball joint tool and then use the ratchet set to disconnect the exhaust pipe coming down from the engine. Unplug the wiring connectors and remove the cables from the alternator. Unscrew the alternator mounting bolts and slide the alternator out of the engine compartment.

Mount the new alternator in place of the old one and tighten down the mounting screws with the crescent wrench. Reconnect the wiring harness and then connect the exhaust pipe back to the engine. Reconnect the tie rod spindle and remount the wheel. Let the car down off the jack and remount the belt onto the pulley. Start the car up to see how it runs.

Items you will need

  • Ratchet set

  • Screwdrivers

  • Ball joint tool

  • Car jack

  • Lug nut wrench

 How to Change the Alternator on a Hyundai XG350

Disconnect the cable running to the negative battery terminal. Loosen the retaining nut on the cable clamp and slide the clamp off the battery terminal.

Disconnect the electrical plug running to the alternator. Squeeze the release tab on the top of the plug and pull the connector off the alternator.

Loosen the alternator pivot bolt on the top of the alternator and the mounting bolt on the bottom of the alternator.

Remove the alternator belt. Now that the pivot and mounting bolts have been loosened, the tension on the belt should be loose enough for your to pull the belt off the alternator pulley.

Remove the pivot and mounting bolts on the alternator and pull the alternator out of the engine bay.

Install the new alternator. Installation is the reverse of removal. Retighten the bottom mounting bolt. Then, reinstall the alternator belt in the reverse manner than you removed it. Apply tension to the belt by wedging a breaker bar between the alternator and the firewall and pulling back on the alternator. Tighten the pivot bolt and check the tension on the belt with a tensioner gauge. The tension for the belt should be 80 lbs. Then reconnect the electrical plug and reconnect the battery.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench

  • Socket set

  • Breaker bar extension

  • Belt tension gauge

  • New alternator

  • Torque wrench

 How to Replace the Alternator in a Hyundai Sonata

Determine which alternator your Hyundai Sonata will need. You'll want to be sure the new alternator is compatible with your Sonata's engine. Models made from 1998 to 2001 have the 2.4 L Sirius or 2.5 L Hyundai engine. Models from 2002 to 2005 have a 2.4 L Sirius or 2.7 L Hyundai engine. Models made after this date will be equipped with a 2.4 L or 3.3 L engine.

Disconnect the negative battery cable and remove the alternator drive belt with a socket wrench.

Remove the wiring harnesses from the alternator and raise the radiator, if necessary, to access the alternator. Take the pivot and adjustment bolt off of the alternator and remove the alternator.

Install the new alternator assembly. Tighten the pivot bolt to between 14 and 18 ft. lbs. for a 2.0 L, 2.5 L or 3.0 L engine. Torque the pivot bolt to 26 to 41 foot pounds for a 2.4 L engine. Torque the adjustment bolt to between 105 and 132 inch pounds for a 2.0 L and 2.5 L engine. The adjustment bolt should be torqued to 14 to 18 foot pounds for a 2.4 L engine and 11 to 16 foot pounds for a 3.0 L engine.

Reposition the radiator if you raised it and attach the wiring harnesses to the alternator. Connect the accessory drive belt and negative battery cable with a socket wrench.

Items you will need

  • New alternator

  • Socket wrench set

  • Torque wrench

 How to Replace the Alternator in a Hyundai Santa Fe

Determine which alternator your Hyundai Santa Fe will need. You'll want to be sure the new alternator is compatible with your Santa Fe's engine. Models made from 2001 to 2006 can have a 2.7 L Delta or 3.5 L Sigma engines. Models made after 2006 have a 2.7 L or 3.3 L engine.

Disconnect the negative battery cable with a socket wrench so you do not short out the alternator when you remove it. Remove the accessory drive belt and disconnect the electrical harnesses from the alternator.

Remove the mounting bolts on the alternator with a socket wrench and take the alternator off the vehicle. The upper bolt is the adjuster and the lower nut and bolt is the pivot.

Install the new alternator assembly and tighten the upper mounting bolt with a torque wrench to between 9 and 11 foot pounds. Torque the lower nut and bolt to between 15 and 18 foot pounds. Connect the wiring harnesses to the alternator.

Replace the accessory drive belt and restore it to the proper tension. Reconnect the negative battery cable with a socket wrench.

Items you will need

  • New alternator

  • Socket wrench set

  • Torque wrench

 How to Replace the Alternator on a 2002 Santa Fe

Four Cylinder Engine

Disconnect the vehicle's negative battery cable, loosening its cable clamp nut with a wrench.

Unplug the electrical connectors for the alternator.

Loosen the upper adjusting mount bolt and the lower mount bolt with your wrench, then turn the adjusting bolt counterclockwise to loosen the drive belt. Remove the drive belt.

Remove the alternator's two mounting bolts and remove the alternator.

Install the replacement alternator and attach the mounting bolts.

Reinstall the alternator drive belt and then tighten the upper and lower adjusting mount bolts.

Connect the alternator's electrical connectors and connect the negative battery cable.

Adjust the tension for the alternator drive belt by prying on the alternator housing and tightening the upper tension and lock bolts followed by the lower bolt.

V6 Engine

Disconnect the battery cable as described above.

Loosen and remove the alternator drive belt. If the vehicle has a 3.5-liter engine, turn the tensioner's adjustment bolts with your wrench. For a 2.7-liter engine, rotate the tensioner with a breaker bar.

Disconnect the alternator's electrical connectors.

Unbolt and remove the alternator.

Install the replacement with its mounting bolts and connect the electrical connectors.

Reinstall the alternator using the tensioner or its adjustment bolts. If you need to use the wrench ion the tensioner bolts, turn them to properly adjust the belt tension.

Reconnect the battery cable.

Items you will need

  • Wrench

About the Author

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us.