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Excursion Caught Fire Tonight

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Old 11-13-2017, 11:32 PM
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Excursion Caught Fire Tonight

Driving home tonight from a Craigslist score (2015 Platinum F250 running boards for $100) and the battery light came on. I figured the alternator was on the way out which was probably overdo for replacement anyways, so I kept driving because I wasn't far from home. Dash lights started to flicker on and off and then the engine died. I pull over and smell smoke. Pop the hood and flames lick up from the alternator. The alternator is glowing orange in the dark and a mini inferno is blazing within in. Call 911 and fire trucks are en route. Thankfully, I was able to get it out before the truck went up in flames. If this were a gas engine, I suspect it would have been a complete loss.

The front pulley is completely sized and ****-eyed in the hosing. Serpentine belt melted and it looks like I cooked the batteries. I think the alternator internal shaft bearing went and the friction caused the fire. The alternator wires are completely roached which means the fuse-able links are toast. Definitively going to need alternator, batteries, and serpentine belt at a minimum. I will probably try to source a used engine harness on eBay and get a positive battery cable harness new. Truck still starts so that is positive (pun intended). Completely sucks, but it could have been worse .
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Old 11-13-2017, 11:36 PM
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im glad no one got hurt and your truck didnt go up in flames entirely
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Old 11-14-2017, 07:07 AM
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Wow. Got any pics?

I am always worried about a fire. I keep a fire extinquisher in the back just for this type of situation.
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Old 11-14-2017, 08:29 AM
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Ouch, but it sounds like you really got lucky. I had my battery light come on one time, ended up being the alternator, and I was about an hour from home in the dark. Luckily it had enough life left to keep it running, even with the headlights on.

Do you know if it was the original alternator?
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Old 11-14-2017, 10:12 AM
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x2 on the fire extinguisher.

In many countries they're required by law.

I hate the Gov babysitting us, but a fire extinguisher not required on a vehicle filled with gas is plain stupid to me.
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Old 11-14-2017, 03:10 PM
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X3 on the FE, I have two, one mounted on the floor in front of the console and one at the back doors mounted where the spare tire used to be.
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Old 11-14-2017, 03:49 PM
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Yep, fire extinguisher is being put in all my vehicles. Lesson learned for sure. Update on repairs. The guy who rebuilds my starters and alternators said he has never seen one look like mine in his 30 years in the business. Well, gold star for me.

I was able to score a harness of eBay for $100 shipped. I might get lucky and it just be the three alt wires that are roasted but who knows, I could have fuse-able links blown so if I have an issue, I am just going to swap the whole harness. Its also nice to have extra connectors, so the $100 isn't a total waste. I did pull on the fuse-able links and they are still taunt so they didn't heat up like I thought they would. I went ahead and ordered an OEM tentioner, idler pulley, and serpentine belt. If something put it in a bind, I want to ensure it doesn't happen again.

I figured while I had it tore apart, I would replace the power steering pump that was intermittently whining. Hell, let just go ahead and do the red head gear box while I'm in there. These one off maint headaches always lead to replacing stuff while your there. Still better than a new truck payment and it probably is wore out after 20 years of service and needed to be replaced.

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Old 11-14-2017, 09:26 PM
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Wow, so much for the core exchange.
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Old 11-15-2017, 07:33 AM
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Damn, it's toast! no pun intended.....
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Old Yesterday, 07:15 PM
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Wow, glad you got the fire out without more damage! Just told wife we need to get a fire extinguisher for the Ex. Thanks for the "reminder"
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