Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. How to Replace a Serpentine Belt

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt 1

The serpentine belt is connected to and moved by the engine crankshaft pulley. In turn, the belt drives all of the front-mounted engine accessories including the power steering pump, alternator, water pump and smog pump if equipped.

Over time, serpentine belts that are wearing out will become cracked and brittle, indicating it is time for replacement. Serpentine belts are extremely important because if they break, the engine will eventually stop running and you will lose power steering. In addition, a broken belt can cause engine damage if the water pump is belt driven and the engine is allowed to overheat.

Part 1 of 2: Remove the serpentine belt

Materials Needed

  • Free repair manuals - Autozone provides free online repair manuals for certain makes and models
  • Protective gloves
  • Ratchet
  • Repair manuals (optional)
  • Safety glasses
  • Serpentine belt tool (optional)

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt 2

Step 1: Locate the serpentine belt routing diagram. Locate the serpentine belt routing diagram before removing the belt. This diagram will ensure that you know how to reinstall the belt. Most of the time, the diagram is mounted somewhere in the engine compartment. If not, you’ll need to consult the factory repair information or take a picture of the belt routing prior to removal.

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt 3

Step 2: Move the tensioner. Use a ratchet or dedicated serpentine belt tool to push on the tensioner and move it away from the belt.

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt 4

  • Note: Some tensioners have a slot to insert a square ratchet head end into. Others have a traditional bolt head that you can install a socket onto.

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt 5

Step 3: Remove the belt. While still holding the tensioner away from the belt, slide the belt off the pulleys.

Part 2 of 2: Install the new serpentine belt

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt 6

Step 4: Determine how to route the belt. Look at the belt routing diagram or the picture you took to determine how to install the new belt.

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt 7

Step 5: Move the tensioner. Use a ratchet or serpentine belt tool to push on the tensioner and move it away from the belt, so the new belt can be installed on the pulleys.

How to Replace a Serpentine Belt 8

Step 6: Install the new belt. Position the new belt on the pulleys. Once the belt is in place, let go of the tensioner. Double check the belt installation against the routing diagram or the picture you took to ensure it is routed properly.

If this seems like a job you’d rather leave to a professional, YourMechanic offers expert serpentine belt replacement at a time and place of your choice.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

How Long Does a Vacuum Brake Booster Check Valve Last?
The braking system on your car requires a lot of pressure. The vacuum booster is one of the main sources of this pressure. This booster will take the pressure that...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
How to Transfer a Car Title in Idaho
In order to prove ownership of a car, you must have the title. However, when a car is sold, given away or inherited, the title needs...

Related questions

Q: My Enclave has 160 K miles on it and It's time for a new serpentine belt.The car has a thumping sound when I drive it.i turned the

The fact that this sound disappears suggests that it could be potentially a loose motor mount depending on how severe the thumping sound is. If the serpentine belt has not yet been replaced with 160,000 miles on it, it is...

Q: Installing performance brakes

Hi, thanks for writing in. It all depends on the performance parts that are being installed. You suggest following the recommendations of the kit manufacturer. If the rotors and pads are the same size as the original equipment, then you...

Q: What does the Maintenance Minder indicator mean?

Your car is equipped with a pretty advanced system designed to help you remember when most of your maintenance services are due. These reminders are shown in the Maintenance Minder on the dash of your car. The Maintenance...