If you hear an annoying squeaking noise coming from the engine compartment, the V-belt or its more modern form, the V-ribbed V-belt, is likely the offending component.
It is now essential to perform a careful inspection of this worn part. If this does not occur, the secondary devices it drives may become damaged or stop working entirely.
The V-belt or V-ribbed belt replacement procedure can help you avoid this issue. We’ll go over how to achieve this in more detail in the sentences that follow.
Could you please explain the function of the V-belt?
The V-belt is the component in charge of driving what are known as secondary devices. In the past, these two components were the water pump for cooling and the electric generator.
Others, such as the power steering pump or the air conditioning compressor, have been added recently.
While the V-belt is powered by adhesion, the ribbed V-belt also operates through continuous connection.
Both are frequently put under tension and strong frictional pressures, which over time makes the material more brittle.
At some point, the belt will have lengthened to the point where the required tension can no longer be maintained at an adequate level.
After that, it will begin to sway and make that familiar squeaking sound. The driver should pay attention to this because it indicates it is time to check the belt.
Checking the tension of the V-belt requires you to touch it with your fingers. If you can bring it closer to you with the tip of one finger, this no longer suffices.
The V-belt will need to be replaced if the fabric also demonstrates tears. It is possible to retain it if it maintains its pleasing appearance.
V-belt sprays are available at some retailers, and some online forums advise placing a lighted candle or a bar of soap adjacent to the V-belt.
These controversial methods, which at best temporarily stop the symptom (the squeaking), do not deal with the root cause of the issue.
If the V-belt is completely torn, the roadside assistance team can assist you and replace it right there and then.
You shouldn’t even attempt the temporary fix with a pair of socks today because it will only work with older generations of autos.
Instructions for re-tensioning the V-belt
Take note that not all automobiles can be serviced using this method!
Locate your car’s electrical generator. If you are having trouble finding it, you can either trace the path of the battery cable back to where it began or consult the manual that came with your vehicle.
Locate the nut or screw holding the bolt in place. This is the location of the electric generator, which is mounted on a kind of slide in this area. Using a socket wrench, you should be able to loosen them. In most cases, you won’t need to undo the screw completely.
A set screw is supposed to be attached to the slide. Pull the electric generator backward until the V-belt is sufficiently taut, then use the spanner wrench to release it. You can use a safety hammer to give it a few light taps.
First, you should fix the threads, and then you can install the set screw or the safety bolt.
Turn the key to start the engine, and pay attention to whether or not the V-belt continues to make noise. If this is not the case, then it can be concluded that the repair was successful.
What procedures should you take to choose the right V-belt designation?
It is necessary to replace the V-belt if it has any small cracks or if the material has become porous and full of holes. If this occurs, there is no other option.
The next step is to look for the correct replacement part in the surrounding area. Standardized designations are assigned to all conventional V-belts and V-ribbed belts; using these designations, the ideal replacement part can be located quickly. For example:
XPS 562 Lw
The initial letters (which may alternatively be numbered) refer to the user’s profile. There are numerous possible permutations.
ZX will mean “V-belt with toothed profile,” XPZ will mean “narrow V-belt with toothed profile,” and B will be a classic p-belt. A narrow V-belt with a toothed profile is what XPS stands for.
Always a number, the second component is a number. Be careful here. If only one value is shown without a prefix, that value serves as the reference length.
If the value is shown in conjunction with the letters “Lw,” then the length referred to is the working length. Five hundred sixty-two millimeters in our particular instance.
For V-ribbed V-belts, the following designations are furthermore possible:
In the first place, the number of grooves is specified, which is 8. The profile, also known as the K-profile, is presented next, followed by the reference length, measured in millimeters.
The designation is continually printed and should be straightforward to locate, regardless of whether the belt in question is a standard V-belt or a V-ribbed belt.
If no designation is available, you can utilize the crucial number to find the appropriate spare part in the distributor lists.
Because these components are more or less standardized, the manufacturers rarely offer recommendations.
In the general technical inspection, a V-belt that makes a squeaking sound is not considered a defect; however, it must still be reported. On the other hand, a belt that has holes or is otherwise damaged is.
Alternating between the ribbed belt and the V-ribbed belt, step by step
Note: On some automobiles, the conventionally ribbed V-belts have been replaced with an elastic variant.
Since they don’t require a roller or any other kind of tensioning tool, these are simple to spot.
A specialized tool and considerable force are required to replace an elastic V-belt. As a result, the modification can only be implemented in a workshop setting.
- Lifting platform
- Or trench
- Wrench or wrench
- Marking punch
- Or drill
Open the vehicle’s hood, and look inside the engine compartment for the V-belt. The vehicle should then be parked in a ditch or on a lift platform.
To ensure you don’t forget any of the deflection rollers the belt passes through, please make a list of them all. When in doubt, take photos or make a drawing of the situation.
V-belt: Determine the electric generator’s location and the belt drive it is attached to. There should be either two bolts, one bolt, and a screw in that location.
Raise the height of the vehicle. The front bolts or bolts should be loosened first, followed by the positioning bolt. Both operations require the use of a spanner wrench.
Drive the electric generator forward until the V-belt can be pulled back to its original position. Bring the vehicle down.
V-ribbed V-belt: Determine the location of the electric generator and the tensioning roller it is attached to.
It is possible to push the tension lever into the opposing housing using a spanner wrench. This will result in the bores of both housings being parallel.
After that, the position is secured by using the marking punch or a miniature drill. The V-ribbed V-belt is expected to be completely loose at this point.
Remove the tattered V-ribbed and ribbed belt, clean the deflection roller with a rag, and replace the belt.
Although it is not necessary, this procedure should be carried out to prevent any potential dirt from wearing down the new V-belt or ribbed belt.
Put the new belt in place, so the path it follows is identical to the one the old belt took. It is essential to pay attention so that accurate tracking can be maintained.
It must not protrude or move laterally in any way. Place the car on a lifting platform and check it to make sure.
Raise the vehicle to its previous height. Continue to pull the electric generator backward until the correct tension is achieved.
You can use a safety hammer to lightly tap the electric generator on the slide a few centimeters backward to reach the precise position.
First, use the wrench to tighten the screw that controls positioning, and then use the same twist to secure the screw that holds safety. Turn the engine back on.
Channel V-belt: After removing the marking punch or drill, the spanner wrench should be placed on the tension lever.
Allow the tension lever to gradually return to its starting position, which should take place automatically due to the pressure exerted by the spring.
Keep an eye on the V-ribbed V-belt and check that the pressure is applied evenly and centered across the entire surface.
Using your fingers, you can determine the tension level in the V-ribbed and ribbed belt.
The belt is at the proper tension when you can no longer pull it in your direction without it snapping.
Get in the car and turn the engine on as soon as possible. Make sure to pay close attention to the electric generator as well as the power steering and air conditioning.
Pay close attention to the sounds that are occurring. If everything seems normal and functions properly, the adjustment is made correctly.
Possible errors and solutions
If everything goes as planned, even a complete newbie shouldn’t have any issues changing a normal V-belt or a V-ribbed belt.
However, it is still possible, as a matter of course, for issues during the initial journey. In this section, we will discuss the errors that occur most frequently and the potential solutions.
A squeaking sound was coming from the direction of the engine compartment. The V-belt may expand slightly after the first time it is used, in which case the tension will no longer be optimal.
However, this scenario occurs only very infrequently. When it comes to the V-ribbed V-belt, this problem is fixed by itself due to the spring tension.
On the other hand, the V-belt requires that the tension be adjusted by hand. You should file a complaint if you feel the V-belt is not keeping its pressure as it should. We have a big issue if this is the case.
There is a problem here. In today’s technological world, especially motors with ribbed V-belts are very complex and drive a wide variety of devices.
Even if you have everything ready, there is still a chance that you will forget one of these auxiliary components by accident, but the motor will still function properly.
If this is the case, you will be required to start the entire process again and pay careful attention to ensure it is completed successfully.
The onboard computer or the warning light indicates that the battery is failing.
Because the V-belt or V-ribbed belt that is usually used makes the electric generator work, it is possible that a change made in error is to blame for the symptoms being experienced.
The first thing that needs to be done is not to freak out. The battery’s charge will last a long time if the most energy-intensive appliances, such as the air conditioner, radio, navigation system, and heater, are turned off because they have the shortest useful lives.
The next step is to identify the source of the problem. Your first order of business is to ascertain whether or not the drive wheel of the electric generator (which is linked to the trapezoidal cores) rotates.
If this is the situation, you need to check the connection to the battery, only for the eyes; please do not touch it!
If you cannot identify any issues, it is possible that the sensor is broken or that the computer built into the vehicle is malfunctioning.
In this scenario, it would be best for you to go to a repair shop that offers diagnostic services.