The drive belt of your car is an important part that is essential to ensure proper working of the engine. Proper belt tension is necessary for the efficient working mechanism of the car engine. The drive belt works many peripheral accessories of the engine and helps to cut down the friction formed inside the engine.
Most of the car engines will have multiple drive belt systems and you might not understand when one of the belts in the system has failed. Driving the vehicle in such a state can lead to permanent damage to the engine components. Therefore, it is important for you to take your car to a good auto repair shop for a regular checkup.
Use of Drive Belt
Old cars had different belts for various components of the engine, like the water pumps and alternators. However, modern vehicles have a drive belt that replaces the need for numerous belts and runs the alternator, AC compressor, water pump, power steering pump, air pump, etc. The drive belt is called the S belt or the Serpent belt. It is important to have a good drive belt for the vehicle as it can help decrease friction between the various engine components.
The Serpent bet is made from strong rubber and is capable of withstanding a good amount of tension. However, the belt can weaken due to heat and friction, reducing the tension. The decrease in tension will affect the working of the peripheral devices and can fail eventually, resulting in a breakdown.
Causes of Drive Belt Losing Tension
The drive belt should be inspected for wear and tear regularly and should be replaced periodically. If you take your ride to auto repair shops for regular servicing, you need not worry much about the drive belt of the vehicle. Auto repair experts say that the drive belt can stay good for about 40,000 miles or for a period of three years. However, factors such as excess heat, oil leakage from the engine to the belt, and improperly fixing the belt to the engine can also make the drive belt of your car to lose tension.
Common symptoms of drive belt losing tension are squeaking noise from the engine bay of the vehicle, splits and cracks on the belt, and damaged edges or missing pieces of the belt. If you notice any of these signs, take your car to the nearest auto repair center and get the problem fixed before things become worse.