GM Firebird 1982-1992 Repair Guide

Belts

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INSPECTION



See Figures 1 through 5

Inspect the belts for signs of glazing or cracking. A glazed belt will be perfectly smooth from slippage, while a good belt will have a slight texture of fabric visible. Cracks will usually start at the inner edge of the belt and run outward. All worn or damaged drive belts should be replaced immediately. It is best to replace all drive belts at one time, as a preventive maintenance measure, during this service operation.



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Fig. Fig. 1: There are typically 3 types of accessory drive belts found on vehicles today



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Fig. Fig. 2: An example of a healthy drive belt



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Fig. Fig. 3: Deep cracks in this belt will cause flex, building up heat that will eventually lead to belt failure



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Fig. Fig. 4: The cover of this belt is worn, exposing the critical reinforcing cords to excessive wear



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Fig. Fig. 5: Installing too wide a belt can result in serious belt wear and/or breakage

ADJUSTING



V-Belts

See Figures 6, 7, 8 and 9



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Fig. Fig. 6: A gauge is recommended, but the belt deflection may be checked using light thumb pressure



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Fig. Fig. 7: Loosening alternator pivot/adjustment bolt in order to tighten the belt



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Fig. Fig. 8: Apply tension to the belt being careful not to damage the case. While holding accessory in this position, tighten the pivot bolt.



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Fig. Fig. 9: Using a 1/2 in. ratchet, apply tension to the air conditioning belt while tightening the pivot bolt

Belts are normally adjusted by loosening the bolts of the accessory being driven and moving that accessory on its pivot points until the proper tension is applied to the belt. The accessory is held in this position while the bolts are tightened. To determine proper belt tension, you can purchase a belt tension gauge or simply use the deflection method. To determine deflection, press inward on the belt at the mid-point of its longest straight run. The belt should deflect (move inward) 3 / 8 - 1 / 2 in. (10-13mm). A general rule for alternator belt tension is that the pulley should not be capable of being turned with hand pressure.

Serpentine Belt

On most newer vehicles, a single belt is used to drive all of the engine accessories formerly driven by multiple V-belts. The single belt is referred to as a serpentine belt. All the belt driven accessories are rigidly mounted with belt tension maintained by a spring loaded tensioner. Because of the belt tensioner, no adjustment is necessary.

REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



V-Belt

See Figures 10, 11, 12 and 13



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Fig. Fig. 10: Loosen the component mounting and adjusting bolts slightly



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Fig. Fig. 11: Remove the belt by pushing the component toward the engine



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Fig. Fig. 12: Remove the drive belt



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Fig. Fig. 13: To tighten the belt, pull the component away from the engine and tighten the mounting bolts to specifications

To remove a V-style drive belt, simply loosen the accessory being driven and move it on its pivot point to free the belt. Then, remove the belt.

It is important to note that on engines with many driven accessories, several or all of the belts may have to be removed to get at the one to be replaced.

Serpentine Belt

See Figures 14 and 15



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Fig. Fig. 14: Serpentine belt tensioner-V6 engine



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Fig. Fig. 15: Serpentine belt tensioner-V8 engine

A belt tensioner is used on these models, to maintain proper belt tension. To relieve belt tension, rotate the belt tensioner (using a 15mm socket) to relieve pressure on the belt. With tension relieved, the belt may then be removed from the engine. It is important to note the belt location at each pulley, to assure correct installation, and proper operation of the engine cooling system. A diagram may be helpful in denoting belt positioning.

Take care not to bend the tensioner when applying torque. Damage to the tensioner will occur. Maximum torque to load belt should not exceed 30 ft. lbs. (41 Nm).

 
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