About Serpentine and Drive Belt Replacement
What does the serpentine/drive belt(s) do? The serpentine/drive belt powers several components of the vehicle. Some components include; Alternator, Power Steering Pump, A/C Condenser, Water pump, etc. Some vehicles may have 2-3 belts to power different components. How do you know you need your serpentine/drive belt(s) replaced? Visual inspection shows cracks in rubber belt Squealing sound coming from belt when vehicle is running How are the serpentine/drive belt(s) replaced by a mobile mechanic? The belt tensioner is released to reduced tension on belt so it can be removed and belt tensioner slowly released again. The old and new belts are compared to ensure similarities. The belt tensioner is released to install new belt and slowly released again putting tension on the belt. The tensioner is adjusted to insure proper tension is applied (if required) Vehicle is started to test and inspect new belt. How important is having your serpentine/drive belt(s) replaced? Since the serpentine belt is made out of rubber, over time it becomes brittle and begins to crack. During routine maintenance, the serpentine belt should always be inspected. If cracks are noticed it should be replaced to prevent it breaking during operation and causing engine damage.