Tip & How-To about Cycling

Your fan / serpentine belt broke, or you just replaced a pump or alternator. The last thing to do is get that belt back on. And it's playing hard to get. This is for you. It's easy and doesn't require a prybar. Here's how: Get a 14mm or 9/16" socket and a long handled ratchet or breaker bar. Get the belt around all the pulleys except the A/C compressor or Alternator. The tensioner pulley is near the Alternator toward the center of the engine. It's on a spring loaded 'tensioner' arm. Get your socket on the center nut of this pulley. Slowly pull the ratchet toward the center of the engine. The pulley will pivot on the arm allowing you to get the belt on the final pulley. Slowly release the tension. You're doneThe same technique is used to get the belt off The downside (for future reference) A Serpentine belt is a single belt that drives the water pump, power steering pump, A/C compressor and alternator. It's a good idea to make sure this belt is in good shape, especially if you frequently drive in stop and go type traffic. It's a better idea to carry a spare. Why? In case the belt breaks. Let me tell you first hand what you'll experience when a serpentine belt breaks in slow traffic. Nothing. there are no immediate performance changes. If you're observant you may notice the Alt light is on. But you will keep driving (draining the battery which is no longer charging) After about 10 minutes, maybe less, the engine will over heat (water isn't pumping). You'll try to pull it to the side of the road, and find you can barely move the wheel (No more power steering). When you get it to the curb you switch off and wait. After the engine is cool enough and if you happened to have water or some antifreeze, you top off the radiator. Your ready to get home. You turn the key, the engine makes a half revolution, followed by a series of clicks. International Starter Solenoid Code for a dead battery. You see the problem. All you engines support systems run off of this belt. If it fails, the rest of the day could go down hill. I keep a spare zip tied under the hood. Just in case. Hope you find this info useful now and in the future Mike

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2 Answers

2000 Corolla overheats after replacing serpentine belt


sadly without the capability to see it . makes it hard to diagnose see a local mechanic

Sep 22, 2017 | Toyota Corolla Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

belt broke then battery light came on then car started overheating....


The serpentine belt drives all your components, including the alternator (the reason for your battery light coming on) and also drives your fan and water pump (reason for overheating). So other than moving the car to the side of the road, you shouldn't drive it!

It is easy to replace - highly recommend you spend the dollar or two extra for the Gates rubber belt, since they will last longer and less prone to cracking.

Jul 09, 2011 | Mazda Protege Cars & Trucks

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serpentine belt broke is the engine ruined


serpentine belt no timing belt maybe yes know as a interferece engine but the serp.. belt should be fine just replace

Dec 29, 2010 | 2000 Ford Escort

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engine made a weird noise when i started it & then the power steeing did not work & the battery light came on


the cerpenteen belt that runs the fan, powersteering pump, alternator(battery charger), and water pump broke. if the belt just broke from being old, just replace it. but check all of the pullys to make sure they spin relitivly easy. if you find one that dosen't spin easily, it could need replaced too.

Oct 28, 2009 | 1998 Ford Explorer

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