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How to Replace a Serpentine Belt

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt

A serpentine belt is one of the key elements providing your motor’s steady functioning. And we are going to provide you with all the necessary information about its examination plus substitution. A serpentine, also called an s-belt deals with simplifying pumps plus sheaves operation under the hood.

This long belt deals with any motor-driven detail, comprising a water pump, alternator, a/c compressor, and power steering pump.

As so many motor’s internal parts heavily depend on it, it’s crucial to examine your s-belt periodically for possible weariness, cracking, or glazing. A serpentine belt must be substituted after every 30,000-60,000 miles run. In order to make this process easier for you, we are offering a detailed guide on the inspection and substitution of this belt.

Serpentine belt change guide

Tools needed:

General Rules of S-Belt Replacement

Experienced drivers who used to substitute fan belts may recall how traumatic and energy-consuming the process it was. Moreover, as a rule, it was necessary to substitute two or even three belts.

Today, contemporary automobiles employ one wider, multi-rifled serpentine belt in lieu of the ones for each internal detail. A curious fact: the belt got its name for the manner it snakes around various sheaves.

Serp belt substitution is pretty easy due to contemporary automatical drive belt tensioners eliminating the necessity of loosening bolts or prying elements into disposition for re-tensioning. Revise the tensioner, remove the old belt and mount a fresh one. The tensioner can be released after belt ribs take their positions into the sheave grooves.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: To reach the motor’s front part, move away from motor covers, shrouds, or plastic guards, which may prevent you from seeing the work area well. Having opened the automobile’s hood, you will get access to the serp belt.

Step 2: Deactivate the battery. Actually, the battery must always be deactivated before any serious operations within an automobile. Applying a wrench or socket of the proper size weakens the nut carrying a black grounding cable on the negative battery terminal.

  • Slip the cable off from the terminal and thrust it to the batteries’ side.
  • The positive terminal may stay connected.

Step 3: Localize the belt tensioner situated under spring tension to keep the pressure on the belt that protects it. A contingent from your automobile’s motor, the s-belt may be situated in the front part of a motor or may go along its side. If there are any motor covers on a way, move them away.

Step 4: Localize the serpentine belt routing diagram. Many automobiles are supplied with a sticker in the motor bay demonstrating how the s-belt is expected to pass through different motor sheaves. If your automobile has no sticker, you will have to memorize the belt’s routes.

  • Consult the owner’s manual for your automobile model to create a diagram.
  • Another way is to take a photo of how the existing belt is placed and follow the scheme while installing a fresh one.

Step 5. Loosen the tensioner employing a wrench. Just push it on the opposite side of the spring tension. A contingent from employment, your s-belt may have a tensioner established on it by a mobile bracket or an auto tensioner sheave, using an internal spring for employment of persistent pressure to the belt.

  • If your automobile features no tensioner sheave, tension is set on the belt by an alternator bracket.
  • If you have any doubts, consult your automobile’s service manual to find out what tensioner it keeps.

Auto tensioners feature a port for a ½ inch drive ratchet or a bolt for which you are free to utilize a socket. Inset a wrench or set a socket over the bolt on the tensioner. Twirl it away from the belt to loosen the tension.

Step 6: Pull the belt off the nearest sheave after the tensioner is weakened. If your automobile is equipped with an alternator bracket, loosen two bolts passing through long bracket slots. After that, the belt’s pressure will most probably shift the alternator to motor, relieving the pressure.

Step 7: Now, feel free to take off the belt. Remove it from the bottom sheave plus all idler sheaves plus accessories.

Step 8: Make sure that a fresh belt looks similar to the old one. They must have the same width as well as an identical number of ribs, covering the belt horizontally. Note that the old belt may be a bit longer as it stretches a bit after being utilized for a long time.

  • If the belts have different width, don’t install the new one as it’s wrong.
  • Make certain that a fresh belt has no damages or flaws. Otherwise, it may tear soon after its installation.

Step 9: Having examined the fresh belt, mount it onto the sheaves.

  • The s-belt must be long enough to cover all the sheaves, excluding the tensioner until you revive its pressure.
  • In case the belt lies too loosely, it signifies that you have the wrong size belt. The other reason for that is that you have placed it incorrectly.

Step 10: After placing the belt on the motor sheaves, activate the tensioner for the belt mounting finalization.

Step 11: Having revived pressure on the auto tensioner, place the belt over it. Employ the same wrench to weaken the auto-tensioner sheave, then drag the belt over it. As soon as the belt is set, release the tensioner’s pressure to hold the belt in its place. If your automobile features no auto tensioner, input a pry bar or a piece of wood betwixt the alternator and the motor.

Place the belt over the alternator sheave. Employing a bar, extract the alternator from motor and then, release pressure on the belt. Clench bolts one more time after applying tension.

Step 12: Having finished the belt installation, take a flashlight to check if the belt placement on the sheaves aligns with the belts’ riffles.

Serpentine Belt Replacement Tips

  • Belt sheave grooves are cleaned better by wire brushes.
  • Always employ the belt of the correct size for maintenance of the normal tension level.
  • Avoid applying “belt dressing” or anti-noise sprays. Though they can be a temporary solution of the problem, they may cause belt failure due to the contaminated sheave system.
  • When you remove the belt, twirl the sheaves to make certain that the bearings are reliable. If bearings fail, they shriek before locking up and throwing the belt off.

A serpentine belt ensures the steady functioning of air conditioner compressor, power steering pump plus the alternator. It may fail or crack after being utilized for some time, and that leads to some systems failure. Steering will become complicated due to the car battery’s diminished charge caused by non-operational power assist. Though belt placing is quite a complicated task, you will easily cope with it by drawing a diagram or making a photo.

Best serpentine belts for the money

SaleNo. 1
Goodyear Belts 1060772 Serpentine Belt, 6-Rib, 77.2" Length
  • Meets or Exceeds OEM Specifications; Long-life EPDM Rubber Compound
  • Proprietary rubber formulation for quiet operation
  • Synthetic tension members with balanced twist cord ensures neutral tracking when running
  • AutoCare Association recommends inspecting belts at 60,000 miles and replacing at 90,000 miles
SaleNo. 2
Gates K061015 Multi V-Groove Belt
  • Country of Origin : China
  • The Package Height of the Product is 0.8 inches
  • The Package Length of the Product is 25.4 inches
  • The Package Width of the Product is 6.0 inches
SaleNo. 3
Goodyear Belts 1060730 Serpentine Belt, 6-Rib, 73"" Length"
  • Meets or Exceeds OEM Specifications; Long-life EPDM Rubber Compound
  • Proprietary rubber formulation for quiet operation
  • Synthetic tension members with balanced twist cord ensures neutral tracking when running
  • AutoCare Association recommends inspecting belts at 60,000 miles and replacing at 90,000 miles
SaleNo. 4
Goodyear Belts 1060865 Serpentine Belt, 6-Rib, 86.5" Length
  • Meets or Exceeds OEM Specifications; Long-life EPDM Rubber Compound
  • Proprietary rubber formulation for quiet operation
  • Synthetic tension members with balanced twist cord ensures neutral tracking when running
  • AutoCare Association recommends inspecting belts at 60,000 miles and replacing at 90,000 miles
No. 5
Gates 90K-38158C Complete Serpentine Belt Drive Component Kit
212 Reviews
Gates 90K-38158C Complete Serpentine Belt Drive Component Kit
  • Save money and prevent premature vehicle breakdowns by making the choice to fix your vehicle right the first time
  • Neglecting to replace the tensioner and pulley(s), at the same time you replace the belt, can not only shorten the life of the belt as well as other front end accessory drive components, but can leave you or your customer stranded on the side of the road
  • Gates understands the importance of getting your vehicle up and running with as little hassle as possible
  • Our Complete Serpentine Kits provide customers a time-saving, convenient way to purchase all the premium parts needed, in one pre-packaged kit, to completely restore their serpentine belt drive system
SaleNo. 6
Goodyear Belts 1060935 Serpentine Belt, 6-Rib, 93.5" Length
  • Meets or Exceeds OEM Specifications; Long-life EPDM Rubber Compound
  • Proprietary rubber formulation for quiet operation
  • Synthetic tension members with balanced twist cord ensures neutral tracking when running
  • AutoCare Association recommends inspecting belts at 60,000 miles and replacing at 90,000 miles
No. 7
Continental OE Technology Series 4070567 7-Rib, 56.7' Multi-V Belt
29 Reviews
Continental OE Technology Series 4070567 7-Rib, 56.7" Multi-V Belt
  • 7-rib, 56.7" Multi-V / Serpentine belt
  • Straight-ribbed construction widely recognized by professional repair technicians
  • New construction and compounding improves durability for a longer lasting, quieter ride
  • The aftermarket multi-v belt that's precision engineered for perfect fit, form and function with a true OE pedigree
No. 8
ban.do 6PK2440 OEM Quality Serpentine Belt
  • Fit type: Vehicle Specific
  • 6 Ribs x 2440 mm or 6 Ribs x 96 Inch
  • Strong tensile cords carry high horsepower loads without stretching
  • Award winning OEM supplier with over 100 major quality awards from manufacturers such as GM, Toyota, Honda, VW, Nissan and many others
No. 9
Goodyear Belts 1060915 Serpentine Belt, 6-Rib, 91.5" Length
  • Meets or Exceeds OEM Specifications; Long-life EPDM Rubber Compound
  • Proprietary rubber formulation for quiet operation
  • Synthetic tension members with balanced twist cord ensures neutral tracking when running
  • AutoCare Association recommends inspecting belts at 60,000 miles and replacing at 90,000 miles
SaleNo. 10
Gates K070701 V-Ribbed Belt
  • Special belt construction eliminates belt noise, reduces tension loss and solves problem drive applications
  • EPDM rubber constructions resist cracking on the rib surface
  • Meets or exceeds all specifications from the Original Equipment Manufacturer
  • Country of origin: China
No. 11
Goodyear Belts 1060868 Serpentine Belt, 6-Rib, 86.8" Length
  • Meets or Exceeds OEM Specifications; Long-life EPDM Rubber Compound
  • Proprietary rubber formulation for quiet operation
  • Synthetic tension members with balanced twist cord ensures neutral tracking when running
  • AutoCare Association recommends inspecting belts at 60,000 miles and replacing at 90,000 miles
No. 12
Goodyear Belts 1060827 Serpentine Belt, 6-Rib, 82.7" Length
  • Meets or Exceeds OEM Specifications; Long-life EPDM Rubber Compound
  • Proprietary rubber formulation for quiet operation
  • Synthetic tension members with balanced twist cord ensures neutral tracking when running
  • AutoCare Association recommends inspecting belts at 60,000 miles and replacing at 90,000 miles
SaleNo. 13
Goodyear Belts 1070852 Serpentine Belt, 7-Rib, 85.2" Length
  • Meets or Exceeds OEM Specifications; Long-life EPDM Rubber Compound
  • Proprietary rubber formulation for quiet operation
  • Synthetic tension members with balanced twist cord ensures neutral tracking when running
  • AutoCare Association recommends inspecting belts at 60,000 miles and replacing at 90,000 miles
No. 14
Bando USA 6PK2320 OEM Quality Serpentine Belt
  • Proprietary “Run Quiet” technology for better grip, less slip resulting in a quieter operation.
  • Strong tensile cords carry high horsepower loads without stretching
  • Ground rubber ribs are compounded from high strength synthetic rubber for wear resistance and long life.
  • 6 Ribs x 2320 mm or 6 Ribs x 91.3"
No. 15
Main Drive Serpentine Belt KBR-5070567 Replacement For Honda CR-V Accord Acura TLX ILX
  • Replacement for: 2017-2019 Honda CR-V (2.4L); 2016-2022 Acura ILX; 2016 Honda Accord (2.4L and with Automatic CVT transmission); 2015-2020 Acura TLX (2.4L); 2015-2016 Honda CR-V; 2015, 2017 Honda Accord (2.4L and with Manual transmission); 2015 Acura ILX (2.4L); 2013-2014 Honda Accord (2.4L)
  • Exclusive USA-engineered Neoprene formula to ensure durability and less wear no matter the temperature
  • Our advanced formula create a more flexible and cooler running belt, greatly extending the serpentine belt life
  • The high strength material maintain tension integrity during belt service life

Author

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About Dan Hoffman

Dan is a co-founder of Engineswork. He knows everything about internal combustion engines. Ask your questions in comments down below this article - he will be glad to help you anytime.

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