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Old 08-17-2004, 03:42 PM
elusive 190E elusive 190E is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: anytown, USA
Posts: 95
Originally Posted by Ron in SC
My tensioner never made any noise whatsoever before it failed without warning.

I'll usually notice when something sounds different or out of the ordinary. I noticed the sound of a very slight exhaust leak, on start up which was coming from my driver's side Cat. Once the vehicle warmed up the noise was gone as the metal expanded enough for the leak to be essentially sealed. It turned out to be a hairline crack around the perimeter of the weld on the Cat. My point is I think I would have been able to figure out the tensioner was about to fail if it gave any warning. But then maybe not. Thank goodness my favorite car has the old fashioned separate v-belts.

"...So is there a recommended mileage or time when a tensioner should be replaced? I really don't want this to happen again..."

Those older style V-belts were recommended to be changed every 5 years or 50,000 miles whichever occured first...

Seems like the newer serpintine style belt would be about the same...

The belt tensioner mechanism should easily be reliable for 100,000 miles or better...

But taking a wild guess I would say to change the belt tensioner mechanism before the 200,000 mile threshold... better safe than sorry... no one wants to break down in a bad area after hours...

Whenever a new engine fan belt is installed the old one [in usable condition] can be placed in a tool box in the trunk along with a flashlight, any spare relays on hand, and the small satchel of tire changing tools...

Hope this info is helpful to someone somewhere...

Elusive 190e
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