Date: Thu, 30 May 2002 22:04:06 +0000 (UTC)
From: "SimonJ" <>
Subject: Re: 9000 CSE 2.3 auto: Safe to drive with broken belt?

"Paul Hudson" <> wrote in message news:Xns921EC2483D634phudsonpoboxcomnopsam0.0.1... > On the way home tonight, a belt started disintegrating (no idea > what it's called - it's on the (UK) offside, and looks like it > drives the aircon, among much else). > > It's still a complete circuit, but one edge's broken off and > disappeared. What happens if it goes completely? Can I still > drive it the couple of miles to the garage, or should I get it > towed in... > > P. With part of the belt still there, you should be OK for a few miles, but keep your eye out for the ign light coming on, which means the belt has failed completely. If this happens, it is probably best not to drive, as you will have no waterpump, and run a very high risk of overheating, and overheating a 2.3 is not a good idea, the head gasket is pretty fragile at the best of times! It is not a big job to change, dont you know anyone in the RAC/AA, who has one of these 'your the member, not the car' policies! If you fancy changing it yourself............ 1) make very carefull note of where the belt runs, draw diagrams, take photo etc. It is a right bugger to try to figure out how the belt goes if you dont! 2) Find a socket that fits the bolt running through the center of the idler pulley, and attatch it to a long breaker bar. Note that this is acctually a left hand threaded bolt. Firstly, try to turn the bolt anticlockwise this will try to tighten the bolt, but as it is allready tight, it will just compress the spring on the tensioner, loosening the belt, allowing you to remove the belt. Take the belt off all the pulleys. 3) the belt will now be threaded through the iddler assembly only. Remove the idler bolt (remember LH thread) which will allow you to take the belt out. While you have the idler pulley off, very carefully inspect the bearings, this is a know faliure, and you are probably wise to replace as routine. 4) place the belt into the idler bracket, and refit the pulley, using a torque wrench to tighten the bolt (LH!). Thread the belt round all the pulleys , using your diagram, photo etc to make sure it is routed correctly. You will not be able to thread it round 1 of the pulleys until you compress the tensioner spring, I would suggest leaving the aircon pulley till last, ans it is easiest to get at. To compress the spring in the tensioner, use the breaker bar and socket on the pulley bolt, turning anticlockwise to compress the spring. Hold it compressed, while placing the belt on the final pulley. Simple aint it! It takes about half the time to do, as to write how to do it!

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