How to Replace the Belt on a Jeep Cherokee

Written by grace mclain
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The Jeep Cherokee model vehicles come equipped with a serpentine belt. The serpentine belt is one complete belt that is routed around all of the front engine accessories. The belt enables the alternator, power steering pump, water pump and the air conditioner to work. The belt has ridges on the inside that travel inside of the grooves of each accessory pulley. When the motor is running, the belt travels around the accessories and operates each accessory at the same time. Change the belt if it has any fraying or cracks within the ridges of the belt.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 1/2-inch drive breaker bar
  • Metric socket set
  • New serpentine belt

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  1. 1

    Raise the hood and prop it in place with the locking rod.

  2. 2

    Inspect the top, left-hand side of the fan shroud for the serpentine belt routing diagram. The diagram is a picture of all of the accessory pulleys with the belt routing instructions.

  3. 3

    Locate the serpentine belt tensioner device. This device on the Jeep Cherokee model vehicle is located on the left-hand side of the water pump pulley. Use the small bolt head that secures the roller pulley to the tensioner arm to turn the tensioner.

  4. 4

    Turn the tensioner counterclockwise with the ½-inch drive breaker bar and a socket. Then, reach under the roller pulley and pull the belt out from under the pulley. Release the tensioner.

  5. 5

    Remove the belt from each accessory pulley. Then, slide the belt around each fan blade and out of the engine area. Turn each fan blade to the top of the engine to make it easier for the belt to slide around the blades.

  6. 6

    Match the old belt to the new belt to ensure the proper width and length. Then, slide the new belt around the fan blades and around the accessory pulleys by using the belt routing diagram for the routing instructions.

  7. 7

    Turn the tensioner counterclockwise again and slide the new belt under the roller pulley. Make sure that the belt is completely seated inside of each pulley. Then, release the tensioner.

  8. 8

    Crank the engine for about 10 seconds to completely seat the belt to the grooves inside of each pulley. Then, turn the engine off and shut the hood.

Tips and warnings

  • If the serpentine belt routing diagram has faded off of the fan shroud, draw out the routing process of the old belt with a pen and piece of paper before removing it from the pulleys.
  • Always keep hands away from the moving pulleys on the front of the engine while it is running.

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