Sunday, November 21, 2010

When do you change Serpentine Belt?

how long should the Serpentine Belt last in a car?? I have a Chrysler LHS 94 and i was told it is time to change it? should i ASAP or are they just getting $$$ from a female.. it is cracked on the inside i have seen itWhen do you change Serpentine Belt?
biggest scam going. Take it from me, I walked off the service floor seven years ago and became an auto teacher because of these things. Serpentines can last up to ten years an an average car. When looking at the belt on the ribbed side, you need to replace it when there are two sections of ribbing missing within two inches from each other. If there is a small(1/2) piece missing from 1 rib, the belt is fine. The out(smooth)side of the belt will show signs of being worn out by turning a gray colour and threads are coming out around the edges. A multitude of tiny cracks on the inside is very normal because these belts are manufactured in a continuous strip, then they are cut to size and the ends bonded together. When you take something that was flat and curve it, say around a half dozen round pulleys of an engine, the inner circumference of the belt is smaller than the outer, causing the ribs to slightly fold over each other. After awhile, the ribs are folded and unfolded so often that they crack. I think physics has an explanation for this phenomena of rubber cracking like it does, as conservation of energy. If the belt is stretched, there is a wear indicator on every tensioner pulley. The movable arm piece of the pulley has a pointer that lies between two marks on the non movable part. As long as the pointer is between the two, the belt is fine.When do you change Serpentine Belt?
When it get's cracked like that it is a good idea to change it but you can do it yourself. There is a diagram, usually located on your fan shroud. All you need is a 3/8 in ratchet or a 15 millimeter wrench depending on what your tension wheel front center looks like. I've even had them where they were 9/16. A little help from someone is nice. But you can do it yourself. Some people don't change them till they break.When do you change Serpentine Belt?
If it is cracked, also called dry rot, then yes it is time to change it! They are very low cost and sometimes can be done on your own, but sounds like you may not have the know how(no offense!) and its better to replace it now than later when you are stranded on the side of the road after it shreds to pieces and causes more damage! So i say buy the part and pay the mechanics labor only, most shops mark up parts and make their money there. Most mechanics work per the job not by the hour, so your looking at a 30 minute-1 1/2 hour job at the most, and most labor rates are anywhere from $40.00-$75.00 dollars per hour on the job.

Good luck!When do you change Serpentine Belt?
Cracks are not good, and I've also seen them run a long time with the cracks (dry rot). I will always change my belt at about 65 to75,000 mile mark. Just about all that I've seen have cracks due to the overwhelming heat they are exposed to, most of the people I tell just keep driving it. They will drive it till it brakes and now they have no water pump, power steering, alternator, or air conditioning, and on top of all this they are now calling a tow truck for a $65.00 job that could have saved them. I recommend like I said to change it every 65 to 75,000 mile whether it needed it or not. It will save you in the long run, plus the Little bitty hassle of WORRYWhen do you change Serpentine Belt?
if any part of the belt is missing id change it asap but if its cracked its ur choise who knows how long it will last could last 1 hr or 5 years if u dont drive out of town much it may b ok 4 now but if u plan on a trip id change it to be safe hope this helps good luck