You should always carry a spare alternator belt in your vehicle for an emergency. The average individual can complete the task with only simple tools and you certainly don't want to end up sitting on the side of the road. Inspect your belts periodically for signs of wear and damage and replace them accordingly. Any sign of cracking or even chunks of missing belt are sure indicators that it is time to change the belt. The repair should take just a short time.
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Things you need
- Metric socket set
Open the engine compartment and disconnect the negative battery terminal. Use a wrench to loosen the terminal nut.
Loosen the belt tensioner by turning it clockwise with a ratchet and socket. Pull the serpentine belt off of the engine.
Route the new serpentine belt throughout the components on the engine, making sure to route it properly. Tighten the belt tensioner with a socket and ratchet by turning it counterclockwise.
Tips and warnings
- The serpentine belt is at the proper tension when you are able to depress it 1/4- to 1/2-inch by pushing on it with your finger.
- See Resources for a belt routing diagram showing the proper path of the serpentine belt. You can also sketch out the belt path before removing the belt so you'll know the proper routing when you install the replacement.
- Never work on the electrical system of your car without first disconnecting the battery as instructed. You could be the recipient of electric shock and you could possibly damage electrical components if a wire with power touches anything.
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