Engine equipment are thrust off of the engine via a serpentine belt. This frequently overlooked belt is no only crucial for normal vehicle operation, yet can make the car unsafe to drive if it fails.

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This article uses to the XJ Jeep Cherokee (1984-2001).

The serpentine belt is responsible because that transmitting engine power to the various engine accessories. The power steering pump, water pump, alternator, air-conditioning compressor, and also engine fan are all operated by the serpentine belt. When serpentine belts are rather robust and generally last countless miles, that is recommended that they are adjusted at regular organization intervals come ensure appropriate vehicle operation. Much more often than not, belts begin to weather and crack, and are at risk to break. While older vehicles that made use of multiple belts could continue to operate if a belt broke, a broken serpentine belt deserve to leave her XJ Cherokee sit on the next of the road. A damaged serpentine belt will permit the engine to conveniently overheat, get rid of power-assisted steering, and also cause the vehicle to use the battery as a backup source of power. Perform yourself a favor by replacing the worn serpentine belt before it breaks and also leaves girlfriend stranded.

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Step 1 – Belt routing orientation

The an initial step towards changing your serpentine belt is come familiarize yourself through the exactly routing that the belt. A belt chart is frequently placed in the engine bay, close to the fan; however, these diagrams deserve to peel turn off or wear away as the car ages. If your auto does not have a belt chart available, the is recommended that you draw a diagram of the belt routing come ensure exactly installation that the new belt.

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Figure 1. Common belt routing diagram.
Pro Tip

Belt diagrams often have a component number listed to show the correct belt for the vehicle. This details should additionally be accessible in her owner"s manual.


Step 2 – ease belt tension

XJ Cherokee models carry out not have actually a spring loaded belt tensioner, but instead use hand-operated belt adjustment at the power steering pump to change belt tension.

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Figure 2. Strength steering pump bolts to relax belt tension.Later XJ models have actually a less complicated belt adjustment procedure requiring only the the idler pulley and also belt adjusting bolt it is in loosened for removal. With a 15mm wrench, loosen the idler wheel "tensioner bolt," but do not eliminate it. Next, ease the adjuster bolt through a 15mm socket, ratchet and extension. Loosen the bolt till there is slack in the belt and slide it off of the strength steering pump pulley.
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Figure 3. Idler pulley bolt to it is in loosened.
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Figure 4. Loosen adjuster bolt because that belt removal.

Step 3 – Remove and also replace belt

With the belt anxiety relieved, it is only a issue of slide the old belt off of the pulleys and also replacing it through a new belt. The belt have to be slide over the mechanical pan for removal. Some individuals opt to eliminate the fan shroud for added room; however, it is not vital for belt replacement.After place the new belt over the fan, it is ideal to position the belt approximately the crank pulley very first and job-related your method around the other pulleys from there. The last locations the belt have to be fitted to is the power steering pump pulley-block or idler pulley. Use the belt routing diagram from step 1 to ensure the belt is routed correctly.With the belt in place, tighten the adjusting bolt to accomplish proper belt tension. Ascendancy of ignorance is to have 1/2" that deflection. Additionally, twisting the belt in ~ its longest ar can likewise determine the tension. The belt need to turn around 90 levels with the correct anxiety set.Tighten the strength steering pump bolts to around 20 ft/lbs for at an early stage Cherokees, and the idler pulley to 42 ft/lbs on later on models.
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Figure 5. Inspecting belt tension.
Pro Tip

A belt will stretch after the initial rest in duration and may need to it is in re-tightened. Belt squeaking is one indication that the belt stress is also loose.


Step 4 – check belt operation

With the belt in place and properly to adjust on all pulleys, proceed to begin the vehicle. Through the engine idling, inspect the belt come make sure it is to run true. If the belt looks to be partly off the a pulley, closeup of the door the engine off and also re-position the belt as outlined above.

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Figure 6. Start car to check belt operation.

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