See Figures 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5
Check the drive belts every 15,000 miles (24,000 km) or once a year, for evidence of wear such as cracking, fraying, and incorrect tension. On the serpentine belts (generator/power steering pump belt), small cracks that run across the ribbed surface of the belt from rib to rib are considered normal and not a reason to replace the belt. However, cracks running along a rib (not across) are not normal. Any belt with cracks running along a rib must be replaced.
The belt can be adjusted by measuring the deflection of the belt at the mid-point between two pulleys under a ten pound push or pull. A small spring scale can be used to establish the ten pound belt load.
Belt deflection under a ten pound push or pull should be between 0.25-0.31 in. (6-8mm) at the location between the two furthest-spaced pulleys. Note that "deflection'' is not play, but the ability of the belt, under actual tension, to stretch slightly and give.
Although it is generally easier on the component to have the belt too loose than too tight, a very loose belt may place a high impact load on a bearing due to the whipping or snapping action of the belt. A belt that is slightly loose may slip, especially when component loads are high. This slippage may be hard to identify. For example, the generator belt may run okay during the day, and then slip at night when headlights are turned on. Slipping belts wear quickly not only due to the direct effect of slippage but also because of the heat the slippage generates. Extreme slippage may even cause a belt to burn. A very smooth, glazed appearance on the belt's sides, as opposed to the obvious pattern of a fabric cover, indicates that the belt has been slipping.
See Figures 6, 7 and 8
A belt tension gauge C-4162 is used on the LH models. When adjusting the belts, be sure to keep them at the specified tensions. Release the tension by loosening the tensioner pulley nut and adjustment bolt. Reverse the procedure to install and tighten the belt to specific tension.
REMOVAL & INSTALLATION
Except Air Conditioning Belt
See Figure 9
The serpentine alternator/power steering and water pump belt has an adjusting screw on the alternator mounting bracket to maintain the proper belt tension. Release the tension by loosening the alternator mounting bolt (A) and adjusting bolt locknut (B), then loosen the adjusting bolt. Reverse this procedure to install and tighten to specifications.