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4.0 Belt Tensioner Pulley

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by wade9986, Feb 16, 2021.

  1. Feb 16, 2021 at 9:49 AM
    #1
    wade9986

    wade9986 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Bilstein 5100s on all 4 corners. Fronts set @ 2.5". 1" block in rear with 1000 lb SumoSprings. BFG KO2- 265/70/17.
    I saw some posts about people having to replace the entire belt tensioner assembly or pressing the bearing in and out of pulleys to replace the one on the tensioner. AC Delco pulley 36713 works. Just don’t use the provided reducer in the kit. It’s actually a pulley and bearing designed for our trucks. It is the same part number used for the upper engine idlers. For those idler pulleys, you have to use the reducer, but for the tensioner you don’t. It fits perfectly. Remember that the belt tensioner pulley bolt is reverse thread.

    FAEC3FDC-089F-4B15-B9ED-0407673D7198.jpg
     
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  2. Feb 16, 2021 at 11:32 AM
    #2
    Accipiter13

    Accipiter13 Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting. How is the belt fit/clearance? On the gates pulleys they “technically” work but the belt clearance is really minuscule. Any chance you have a photo? I’m using the febest pulley which has the correct clearance but a garbage Chinese bearing.
     
  3. Feb 16, 2021 at 12:41 PM
    #3
    TnShooter

    TnShooter Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the heads up. :thumbsup:
    I’ll need to remember this when I have to replace mine.
     
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  4. Feb 16, 2021 at 6:31 PM
    #4
    wade9986

    wade9986 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Bilstein 5100s on all 4 corners. Fronts set @ 2.5". 1" block in rear with 1000 lb SumoSprings. BFG KO2- 265/70/17.
    It all fits like factory. I’ll post a pic tomorrow.
     
  5. Feb 16, 2021 at 6:32 PM
    #5
    Accipiter13

    Accipiter13 Well-Known Member

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    thanks! Specifically wondering about where the belt rides on the pulley! Thank you
     
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  6. Feb 16, 2021 at 6:35 PM
    #6
    wade9986

    wade9986 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Bilstein 5100s on all 4 corners. Fronts set @ 2.5". 1" block in rear with 1000 lb SumoSprings. BFG KO2- 265/70/17.
    Here is a representation of what the pulley looks like with the reducer sleeve. Just leave the sleeve off and the pulley will work on the tensioner.

    8996462E-5ABF-40D7-93E2-24FB07067FC3.jpg
     
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  7. Feb 17, 2021 at 12:58 AM
    #7
    Chuy

    Chuy Well-Known Member

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    Is the belt riding on the edge of the pulley? I have an AC 36173 pulley and compared it to the tensioner pulley/bearing offered by Febest, part # 0187-GRJ200, a direct replacement, and the difference in offset is 5mm.
    I recommend just replacing the bearing. I have the Japan-made Nachi bearing, part # 5203-2NSL (2NS also works). Its an identical size to the OEM bearing. I bought the Febest ($28) as a backup, but I’m going to continue using Nachi bearings.
    E7E4252F-2CE4-4E1E-ABA4-A963938B9A0F.jpg

    Edit: Notice also the difference in width; the 36173 is noticeably narrower, 11mm vs 17mm.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2021
  8. Feb 17, 2021 at 1:19 AM
    #8
    Key-Rei

    Key-Rei Well-Known Member

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    Replacing just the pulley may not be the best solution, the spring can wear out and supposedly there's some clutch like dampener in it to reduce harmonic vibration.

    In heavy enough rain or deep enough water crossings my AC would quit working and the light would flash due to belt slip from my tensioner not working effectively enough.

    Changed out the entire tensioner and no more problem with that.

    I will however also say that changing out your whole tensioner arm is a huge PITA and you should do your left head VVT-I screen when you're there, and vice versa.

    PXL_20210115_184608809.jpg
     
  9. Feb 17, 2021 at 2:19 AM
    #9
    Chuy

    Chuy Well-Known Member

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    Yes, it should go without saying that you only replace the pulley/bearing if the rest of the tensioner is in working condition.

    Couple quick tests. Watch the tensioner over different RPMs and check that it doesn't oscillate; it should run smooth. If it does wobble, check that the problem is not a bad bearing, but rather the tensioner itself. With engine off, check the tension on the belt; should be snug and you shouldn't be able to depress it much. Without a special tension tool, this is more of a subjective test - feel how tight it is on all your cars now before a tensioner goes bad; this will give you an ideal on how snug the belt should be.
     
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  10. Feb 17, 2021 at 9:59 AM
    #10
    wade9986

    wade9986 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    The pulley does seem to be slightly set back (lower left pulley) on the belt, but it’s working fine. I imagine I’ll replace the whole assembly when I have to do the alternator.

    00ACAF0E-F972-4FE5-AEBE-6B72245A5EAB.jpg
     
  11. Feb 17, 2021 at 10:55 AM
    #11
    Accipiter13

    Accipiter13 Well-Known Member

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    thanks! It definitely looks like the belt is riding to the outside of the pulley. I think I’ll go with a replacment nachi bearing if my Chinese garbage bearing starts acting up.
     
  12. Feb 17, 2021 at 1:50 PM
    #12
    Chuy

    Chuy Well-Known Member

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    Another crucial measurement I just noticed after looking at the pic I posted of the two pulleys side by side is that the bearing width of the 36173 is 11mm; whereas, the width of the OEM bearing is 17mm. The 36173 will not last as long but would make a good backup.
     
  13. Feb 17, 2021 at 2:03 PM
    #13
    WhiteYota06

    WhiteYota06 Member

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    Interesting idea. I had an idler pulley go out many miles ago, bought the gates kit with everything and replaced it all except the tensioner one because I didn't want to deal with removing the AC compressor at the time to put in the new tensioner unit. The two units (gates vs OEM) appear a little different but its hard to compare with it still on the car. I'm at 240k so I've been thinking its best just to replace the whole tensioner unit, just have not been in a rush to.

    Whats with the recommendation of the left head VVT-I screen replacement ? I've never read about that mention previously.
     
  14. Feb 17, 2021 at 3:47 PM
    #14
    Key-Rei

    Key-Rei Well-Known Member

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    There's a small screen filter basket in each head that filters the oil that controls your VVT-i (V6) system it's a good idea to change them after a while and you can't get to the left one without pulling the tension bracket.
     
  15. Feb 18, 2021 at 3:13 AM
    #15
    Taco'09

    Taco'09 Well-Known Member

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    Here is another way.
    I specifically went after the VVT-i screen on the driver's side recently and did so by removing the alternator to access.
    The only thing I remember doing with the tensioner was to unload it so the alternator belt could be removed.
    The alternator has two mounting bolts holding it to the tensioner bracket but once those were remove I just slipped the alternator out through the wheel well flap behind the tire.
    Was it more or less fun than your way? :notsure:
     
  16. Feb 19, 2021 at 4:34 AM
    #16
    Key-Rei

    Key-Rei Well-Known Member

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    I had every intention of replacing my tensioner arm and bracket when I did my driver side head screen so I don't recall if it was accessable with just removal of the alternator if so that's great it reduces the complexity significantly as the AC compressor was the big PITA. It's lower rearward bolt was tightened by god himself it seemed and there just wasn't any access to get to it with anything. That one bolt took me about 2 hours to final remove.
     

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