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A total n00b changes his Serpentine Belt! With pictures!

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Old 09-09-2012, 07:54 PM   #1
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A total n00b changes his Serpentine Belt! With pictures!

2008 2.7L four cylinder. With A/C!

So first off, a little preface.

My name is Christian and I don't know jack. I grew up riding dirt bikes with my dad and various family members all over Washington state. All of the men on my dad's side of the family are gear heads. One of my uncles worked as a mechanic in the air force working on f-14's on an aircraft carrier in the early 90's and my other uncle works at the Keyport Naval Base as a foreman putting together torpedo's, he also owns a 1992 4cylinder Toyota pickup that he's done everything under the sun to.

But instead of hanging out in the garage learning how to work on bikes and trucks I stayed inside playing Nintendo and drawing pictures of monsters. Now I find myself the proud owner of a used 2008 Toyota Tacoma and I am learning all the hard lessons about buying a used car! I'm currently trying to learn as much as I can about working on my truck. Hopefully this will help any other beginners out there that don't want to spend an arm and a leg to fix their truck.

Now that we've got that out of the way on to belt change! My truck makes a squealing sound when it's running. After poking around this forum for a while I've learned that it's my serpentine belt.

What you need;
-New serpentine belt.
-14mm socket and ratchet (or wrench).
-Drop light/flash light.
-About 1 hour of free time.

If you run down to autozone (or just about any auto parts store) and tell them the year, make, model and engine size (and if you have A/C or not) of your truck they will give you the right one.

Ready to go!



Lap top standing by just in case things go awry and I need TacomaWorld to save me!



14mm Ratchet!



New Belt!



If your truck is making a constant squeal and your belt looks like mine, you need to replace it! This belt's condition isn't actually that bad, but the squeal is very annoying.



Your truck is supposed to have a diagram located somewhere around the radiator showing you how the belt is supposed to wrap around everything (your going to need it when you put your new belt back on). Mine didn't. So I put all my skills as a 2-year-art-school-drop-out to use and drew a picture! I suggest you do the same as I could not find a diagram (of the 2.7L) on the internet that I was willing to trust. You can even take some pictures of how it should look to help.



Now what you want to find is the belt tensioner. This is a spring loaded wheel that presses against your belt to keep it in place, and to facilitate the belt's removal. Standing in front of your truck looking down at your belt, it is slightly off to the left. The part your going to get your wrench onto is underneath the belt itself. I marked it in red. ALSO, you will have noticed by now that one side of your belt has ribs and the other side is smooth, some of the pulleys have ribs and some are also smooth. When your put your new one on remember, ribs go with ribs, smooth go's with smooth.



You kinda need to lean down and to the left in order to see the tensioner itself (have your light handy!). The nut you need to put your wrench on is marked in red. This is NOT a fastener of any kind. It is simply there for you to get a good grip on the tensioner with your wrench. All the other nuts are fasteners for other shit, don't mess with those!



Get your 14mm and stick it on that bitch! This is how I put mine on. This gives you a firm handle to pull UP on. Now, if the belt were to fall off while you were driving, it would be bad, so it's not just going to lift right up. It takes a bit of muscle. Never mind the dead plant at the bottom...



If your face looks like mine just before you are about to remove your belt... THAT'S NORMAL! I was nervous at first. But don't be! There's really not a lot you can screw up. Trust me! I'm the master at screwing things up and I didn't!



This is a two handed operation! I used my left hand to pull UP on the wrench and my right hand to wiggle the belt off once I had enough slack. Make sure you've got a good grip on your wrench! If it were to slip and you had a finger in between the belt and a pulley I'm sure you'd lose it! It's probably a good rule of thumb to not stick any fingers between the belt and pulleys while you are doing this. Here's a shot of it coming off. Your going to have to work it around your radiator fan. Take your time, it will take some wiggling to get it off.



Gotcha bitch! If yours is in, "OK" condition, like mine, stash in somewhere in your truck in case of emergency (or you put your new belt on wrong and destroy it and need to go get another one!).



Crack is whack. This belt is bad news bears. Now it's a good idea to take the time to make sure your new belt is the right size. Grab both your belts by the ends and stretch them out to check this.



No more belt! Trying to turn on your truck right now would be a really dumb idea.



Now this is where my drawing came in to save the day! If you have any pictures or drawings use them! Remember, put the ribbed side of the belt on the pulleys that have ribs, the smooth side goes on the pulleys that are smooth!

Again your going to have to work it back around your radiator fan. The bottom pulleys are going to be the most difficult as you can't really seem them and they are close together. Get the belt around all of the pulleys (with ribs on ribs and smooth on smooth!) EXCEPT the tensioner. Leave that part last. Your new belt is going to be stiff and a bit of a bastard to get on.

Remember how you worked the belt OFF? Basically were going to do the same thing to get it back on. Pull up the tensioner with your left hand as far as it will go and with your right slide the belt into place and slowly let off on the tensioner making sure everything is in place. Hopefully it will look like this!



This is when I ran my hands all along the belt and pulleys to make sure everything was sitting snugly and lined up properly. After that make sure you've got all your tools, lights, rags and old belts accounted for. Now it's time for the moment of truth!



Success! No sparks, no smoke, no fire and best of all, no more squeal!



Excitement! I don't suck at trucks!



I hope I didn't leave anything out and I hope this helps!

*I am not liable for anything that happens to your truck, good or bad!*
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:01 PM   #2
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Great post.

A great thing about TW is that there are writeups here for jobs of all levels of complexity ranging from the simple to the wildly difficult.

Folks will find this useful.
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:10 PM   #3
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FRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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I noticed there weren't a lot of write ups for the 4 bangers and not a lot on serp belts either!
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:26 PM   #4
I feel so Devo
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nice
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:28 PM   #5
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Congrats- good job!
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:32 PM   #6
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Way to take the initiative and learn how to do... so tired of people at college coming to me to change a lightbulb/tire... it's really not that hard.. look in your damn manual
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:33 PM   #7
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Good job. I replaced mine thursday. It seems a little bit easier on the 2.7 vs the 4.0.
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:37 PM   #8
I feel so Devo
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is that your CBX?
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Old 09-09-2012, 09:20 PM   #9
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FRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tinker_troy View Post
is that your CBX?
Nah, that's my Dad's. He bought that thing brand new and last year had it totally refurbished. I grew up on the back of that bike practically. I believe it's a '78.
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:14 PM   #10
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Thanks for doing this and learning something in the process. FYI for everyone those cracks OP shows are acceptable and that belt is ok. It's the missing chunks and tears you would need replacement with. No harm in replacing just looked OK to me.

Guide:
http://jimsautomotive.com/images/fan_belts.jpg

Bad
http://www.thumper300zx.com/2004_quest/belt.JPG
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:14 PM   #11
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Awesome work OP! Nice write up.
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:17 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FRYBOTH View Post
If you run down to autozone (or just about any auto parts store) and tell them the year, make, model and engine size (and if you have A/C or not) of your truck they will give you the right one.

Ready to go!
Hopefully they give you the right one..
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:17 PM   #14
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great and funny post OP, i lol'd
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:26 PM   #15
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You remind me very much of myself. Except it would take me 2 hours, not 1.

I enjoyed this.
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:39 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jassco View Post
Thanks for doing this and learning something in the process. FYI for everyone those cracks OP shows are acceptable and that belt is ok. It's the missing chunks and tears you would need replacement with. No harm in replacing just looked OK to me.

Guide:
http://jimsautomotive.com/images/fan_belts.jpg

Bad
http://www.thumper300zx.com/2004_quest/belt.JPG
Yeah, it was the squeal that was going to drive me mad!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandman614 View Post
Hopefully they give you the right one..
Yep, that's why I stretched out my new and old one together to make sure they were the same length. Always good to double check! If it doesn't look right when you put the new one all the way on, probably not a good idea to turn your truck on. Best go back to autozone and choke someone!

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Originally Posted by Taco Dan View Post
great and funny post OP, i lol'd
Auto repair doesn't have to be boring! lol
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:53 PM   #17
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FRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shedFRYBOTH is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by friction View Post
You remind me very much of myself. Except it would take me 2 hours, not 1.

I enjoyed this.
I would even tell someone, "If you think it's going to take an hour, give yourself 2."

And thanks!
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Old 09-12-2012, 01:45 PM   #18
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Great write-up! A few things...
1) Thank you. Your post was helpful, informative and entertaining.
2) How many miles are on your 2008 truck? Modern EPDM serpentine (not neoprene) belts can go over 100k miles unless they are subjected to harsh conditions. My 2006 has 80k miles and the serpentine is still in fantastic shape (here in Sacramento we have some hot summers, and winters are relatively mild compared to some parts of the country).
3) I never noticed that the wrench point on the tensioner is not actually a fastener, it's just a hex-shaped protrusion in the casting! awesome LOL
4) Here's an interesting "Two Guys Garage" video on serpentines http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ck8HollJYOc&lr=1
5) For a free serpentine belt wear gauge, go to http://www.gatesprograms.com/beltwear/beltwear

P.S. Love your Avatar... DOOOOOM!
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Old 09-13-2012, 06:27 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FRYBOTH View Post
I would even tell someone, "If you think it's going to take an hour, give yourself 2."

And thanks!
I double the time on activity around the house with trips to the fridge for more beer. Plus I'm mechanically challenged.
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Old 09-13-2012, 06:32 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by DGXR View Post
5) For a free serpentine belt wear gauge, go to http://www.gatesprograms.com/beltwear/beltwear
Thanks for the link!
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