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New Member Intro... And Help With Serp Belt/Pulleys/Tensioner

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by awpk03s, May 18, 2010.

  1. May 18, 2010 at 7:07 PM

    awpk03s [OP] New Member

    May 16, 2010
    2005 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner
    Hi all - new member here, with an '05 red Tacoma X-Runner. Had the truck for about a year now and 25k miles (total of 70k miles), and it's been flawless. No real mods except for an Undercover bed cover, and a TRD cold air intake (en-route to me now, expect to install it this week).

    I have been noticing my serpentine belt whining/squealing for some time now, and dismissed it as cold-weather. Now it's getting warmer here in Ohio, and the sound persists - more than just startup too. I sprayed some belt conditioner on it a week ago, to terrible results. It squealed louder and more constant than ever. The volume and intensity has died down some now, but it's still there. Doing some research on this forum and others, I decided to swap the belt with a Gatorback, and also replace idler pulleys with Gates and the automatic belt tensioner with a Gates unit as well. I could get this stuff from RockAuto for so much cheaper than my local stores, I bought all of it and will either return what I don't need, or replace it all and call it preventative maintenance.

    So... for anyone who's done this before, any helpful tips or advice would be much appreciated. Specifically in regards to the tensioner. The rest appears to be a piece of cake, but the tensioner looks like a bit of a PITA.

    Thanks much.
    - Sam
  2. May 18, 2010 at 8:26 PM

    wlmuncy Well-Known Member

    Mar 9, 2010
    First Name:
    Knoxville, TN
    2007 Double Cab Manual 4*4
  3. May 19, 2010 at 1:18 AM

    Nirvana Tesla Auto

    Jan 2, 2010
    First Name:
    Bay Area, U.S.A
    2006 Off Road 4X4
    Icon ext. travel 2.5RR in front, Icon ext. travel 2.0RR in rear, BuiltRight uniball UCAs, Wheelers Superbumps, Goodridge steel braided brake lines, BruteForce front plate bumper w/ Warn M9000+synth line, 255/754R16s on painted stockers...because I'm not paying $800 to rock rash new wheels you scrubs. Shok Industries 2/0 big 4 upgrade and sound deadener.
    Pulleys are usually pretty painless to pull off. When you do there should be a bearing in the middle, hold onto that and spin the pulley. If it gets caught or sounds like it grinding that's probably the problem or one of them. If you have a really long screwdriver you can also place the tip of the bolt that holds the pulley and then 'listen' to the handle to see if you hear any grinding/squeaking while the engine is on. Also look for any fluids that are leaking as that can be a sign of the shaft being worn i.e. water pump, steering pump, etc.

    Oh and the 05-06 OEM repair manual http://www.ncttora.com/fsm/05+/local files/repair.html Kind of a pain to find stuff but it's worth it.
  4. May 19, 2010 at 2:13 AM

    tacobo670 if you have to ask, u can't afford it

    Jan 22, 2010
    First Name:
    Las Vegas
    Tacoma Sport 4x4 AC 6spd
    Super cherry n some champion stuff on the side
    easy trick. get it from underneath the vehicle so ur not fighting with the fan and oil filter housing. if not sure, make sure to draw out the routing of the belt before removal so u can put it back on -if sticker is not on hood.
    --get a long 14mm box wrench. put it on the tensioner 14mm bolt on the pulley, pull and remove belt. u should notice it pull easily to one side. if pulling to the wrong side, u may loosen the pulley bearing. if this is done, just pull the other way to retighten bolt and loosen tension on belt. when installing belt, make sure all ribs of belt sit flush with pulley grooves.
    --to removed tensioner assembly, u will need to removed the a/c compressor bolts and swing it out of the way. u dont need to disconnect any ac lines. then there are 5 bolts holding the tensioner to the block. this is all on the drivers side of the engine compt.

    hope this helps
  5. Jul 3, 2010 at 3:14 AM

    Fortech Well-Known Member

    Mar 31, 2008
    2005 Toyota Tacoma TRD OR
    Bilstein 5100's, rear TSB, Firestone bags
    Replaced three of my idlers this weekend and installed a new belt. Engine is much quieter now, quieter than its been for a long time actually - but very $$$. $360 Canadian for three new pulleys and a belt.:eek:

    For those of you who are stating that the OEM pulleys are unsealed, you are incorrect. If you press the old bearing out of the OEM pulley you will see that the bearing is sealed on both sides, the rear hole in the OEM pulley is simply too small to allow you to see the seal.

    I pressed the bearings out of my old idlers, flushed them out, repacked them with wheel bearing grease, and pressed back into the wheel so now I have a couple of spares. The only difference in the lower pulley is that there are two bearing pressed in there instead of one - same bearing and all, just two of them.

    My local bearing shop is also trying to source the bearing as simply pressing in a new bearing will be much cheaper than the whole pulley.

    Allot of the TTORA members are replacing the OEM with Gates pulleys available at NAPA and Rockauto. While I haven't viewed the Gates pulley personally, it looks like the exact same type of bearing with a different inside diameter - hence the need for a spacer. Theoretically, the OEM should last longer as only one side of the bearing is open to the elements, versus two sides of the bearing on the Gates version. Either way, if my bearing shop finds a direct replacement I'll post up for others as a cheaper alternative to these expensive pulleys.

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