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What is my Serpentine Belt and Why do I need it to be serviced?

June 12, 2015


M&R Auto Repair Answer:


Great question, your serpentine belt is that long belt that snakes around the front of your engine.


The serpentine belt is powered by the engine as it turns. Your alternator, air conditioning compressor, and power steering pump depend on your serpentine belt to run. On some vehicles it also runs the water pump, radiator fan, and power brakes.


If your serpentine belt breaks, your battery won't last long. If it runs your fan or water pump, your engine could overheat before your battery dies. Steering and braking would also be affected. Hopefully, we've made a good case for replacing your vital serpentine belt when it's worn out.


Your owner's manual will advise you when to replace your serpentine belt. Your informative service advisor at M&R Auto Repair can inspect the belt as well to identify if it's close to failure.


You may have heard that it's a good idea to check for cracks in your belt to see if it's time for a new one. However, with the newer belts, belt thickness is a more reliable indicator of the status. At M&R Auto Repair, we use a special tool to measure the depth of the grooves to see if a replacement is in order.


A worn belt can cause problems even before it breaks. It can slip out of place and put undue stress on the accessories it runs.


There's a tensioner pulley on your engine that puts pressure on the belt to keep it at the right tension. Since the spring on the tensioner wears out like any other part, M&R Auto Repair recommends replacing the tensioner pulley, and sometimes even the water pump when you switch out the serpentine belt.


Replacing your serpentine belt on schedule will save you from a dangerous breakdown.

Give us a call
M&R Auto Repair
342 Sidney Street
Trenton, Ontario K8V 2V2


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