1994 Civic LX Alternator Replacement

I have a '94 Civic LX that needs an alternator replacement. I have read that in order to replace the alternator, you have to drop the half shaft in order to do so. I have also heard of people taking it
out of the top by removing the intake manifold.
My questions are...Which way is the best (i.e., the easiest)? How hard is this to do? Are there any tricks to making it easy?
I appreciate any and all help. Thanks everyone!
Rich
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4dr, automatic, no abs, 1.5L - sorry for not putting this one up :)
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The best trick works if the problem is that the brushes are worn out. In a '94 I'd expect that to be the problem. Symptoms are that it started charging off and on, then more off than on :-( You may not have noticed the off and on until it was all off. Anyway, replacing the brushes is a challenge but apparently not as great a challenge as getting the alternator out in most cases.
Check out Elle's write-up on her '91 Civic at http://home.earthlink.net/~honda.lioness/id14.html (Don't overlook the part about disconnecting the battery.) Elle is our resident expert on most things Civic.
Mike
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I forgot Elle's main alternator page, http://home.earthlink.net/~honda.lioness/id13.html
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Only thanks to Eric, Tegger, Curly, JB, JT ("Grumpy"), George of years ago, you, and many other regulars.
Nixternal, note especially the following comment within my site: To remove the alternator in its entirety, use any of the online Honda manuals (including Autozone's), supplemented by rec.autos.makers.honda hints [link at my site is broken; you'll have to groups.google the newsgroup's archives]. Notice especially the hints about getting that extra inch or two of clearance needed to pull the alternator out: You'll need to support and push against the engine via a jack, pressing against a block of wood, which presses against the oil pan. After this, an engine mount is removed, and the engine is jacked higher. A similar method is used during timing belt removal, only the manuals are explicit about providing support at the oil pan.
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wrote:

I have a 95 CX hatchback,just replaced my alternator last month.Came out the top(near the left middle/back)easy enough. The BIG pain was to take the main bolt(the one that goes trought the casing)off.It was stuck there. Look and try different position and it should come out,unless there is something that's in the way and it's not on mine. Good luck!
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Thanks everyone for the responses. The alternator is totally dead so I will be replacing it with a new alternator. When I say dead, I mean ceased :) I just read that I don't have to remove the half shaft which is promising now. My plans are to: a) Remove and replace the alternator b) Remove and replace the belts (alternator belt is gone anyways)
And then of course a nice tune up, some fresh oil, and maybe another 250,000 miles :) At 13 years old, the engine still purrs like it is new. The only "major" thing I had happen to the car was while doing about 70mph on the highway the timing chain busted. The first reaction from the tow truck driver and the mechanic was, "good chance your valves are totaled as well." Well, nothing happened, all they had to do was replace the timing chain and I think the water pump, can't remember. They were all shocked that there wasn't more damage.
My only gripe about this car are the half shafts. The original shafts went about 125,000 miles, then I screwed up and went to Sears for a new set ($500 installed and aligned), which went out a whopping 50,000 miles later. Not went out literally but the nice popping sound you get when turning. I have that issue again, but not as bad just yet. Being a student makes the money tight, so right now my main goal is to get it running again :)
Thanks again everyone and thanks Elle for the website link!
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Remember to use OEM parts for all ignition system items (spark plug wires, distributor cap and rotor, spark plugs). They pay for themselves. I am frugal and learned this the hard way.

That's a timing belt on your car, technically. Some (all?) of the newer Hondas have timing chains, starting around 2000 or a bit afterwards.
One can indeed get lucky with a timing belt failure, as you apparently did. "Good chance" remains an accurate descriptor.

Consider buying OEM half shafts online from Honda parts sites next time. Should be around $150 per half shaft. If you're handy, you might be able to do it yourself. If you can do it yourself, it's worth considering a halfshaft from Napa or Autozone with a lifetime guarantee, so all it costs you is labor. Caveat: Some here say they are not happy with the halfshafts they have purchased from Napa and Autozone.
I figure your car likely could stand several items being replaced, and for under a $1000, to get another 100k miles or more out of it. At least, this is what I found with my 1991 Civic (189k miles) a few years ago. My biggest concern with my Civic is rusting out of certain areas of the body. So far, it's "only" cosmetic (knock on wood).

No problem. Feel free to let the newsgroup know how it goes. Good luck.
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Joe, I have had good results with the local NAPA, but aftermarket sources may not get you exactly the axles for your car. They come in a variety of sizes and shapes. It is very easy to get one that looks right but is a cm too long or short. Comparing carefully at the store is best but requires the old axle be out before you pick up the new one. In any case, put them side by side sometime before you install the new one.
If you haven't done a drive axle replacement before, be prepared. It requires at least a way of separating a tie rod end and removing the axle nut. The first is a matter of the right tool, and the second requires either an impact wrench or a big honkin' cheater bar. Check back before embarking on that the first time.
Mike
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My aftermarket rebuilt axlehalfshaft (don't remember the brand, the mechanic had sourced it somewhere) broke. I mean, the CV joint was fine, the axle broke in the middle. Parked it in the AM; started it up in the PM, didn't goose it or nothing, moved 2 inches and snap. How we did larf, arr arr arr.

Yeah, that HOnda rear quarter panel rust thing is nasty and universal. Looks like JC Whitney is starting to stock some Honda quarter panel repair panels, but I'm not that bad off yet.
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