Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Dealer says the serpentine drive belt tensioner is leaking. I say, they are full of it, and it is a scam job to replace it.

asked by on

I'd like to know if there is a way to check the drive belt tensioner (still mounted) to see if it is leaking hydraulic fluid or not? There is no noise, and the tensioner is not "wobbling". It appears to be fine.

Also, I have watched videos on online, and the question is, for a 2008 corolla (ninth generation) does the passenger side motor mount have to be temp. on-bolted, so that the long tensioner bolt is raised high enough for clearance of the body, in order to uninstall/reinstall?

My car has 100000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello. In order to tell if it is leaking you really need to get under the vehicle to see the bottom side of the hydraulic cylinder of the tensioner. I have seen a lot of these that are a little wet but they still hold good tension. The bad part is that it can fail at any time and cause some more serious issues. If you need to replace it then yes, the engine will need to be raised as they did not build it with a short accessible bolt. If you are thinking of having the tensioner replaced, consider YourMechanic, as a certified mechanic can come to your home or office to replace the tensioner.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  • Home
  • Questions
  • Dealer says the serpentine drive belt tensioner is leaking. I say, they are full of it, and it is a scam job to replace it.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: low oil service sign, I checked it, it had none. So I put 3 quarts, some came out and started smoking can I drive it for 2 miles

This is a case where you may be better off calling the tow truck. It will cost a bit, but if there is something seriously wrong you may make a complete wreck of your engine by driving. When the engine...

Q: Service park assist is displaying on dash

Hello, and thank you for writing in. Your vehicle is equipped with the Park Assist feature which will help you park in difficult situations. When the computer system detects there is an issue, the warning light illuminates to let you...

Q: is one or more glow plugs not working

Diesel engines are equipped with glow plugs to assist with cold starting. Diesel fuel is a bit thicker in cold weather and can make the engine difficult to start. The glow plugs warm the diesel fuel as it enters the...

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...