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How to Replace Serpentine Belt 96-98 Pontiac Sunfire

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  1. step : Removing the Serpentine Belt (0:50)
    • Disconnect your positive battery cable.
    • Locate the belt diagram.
    • Use a 15mm wrench on the tensioner and push down to give the belt slack.
    • Pull the belt off of the alternator.
    • Pull the belt out of the engine.
    • Check for any cracking or damage on the belt. If there is any cracking replace it.
  2. step : Replacing the Serpentine Belt (3:58)
    • Use the belt diagram to put the belt on properly.
    • Get the belt on every pulley except for the idler pulley.
    • Use the 15mm wrench on the tensioner and put the belt into place on the idler pulley
    • Reconnect the positive battery cable.
    • Start the vehicle to test.

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Hi, I'm Mike Green. I'm one of the owners of 1A Auto. I want to help you save time and money repairing and maintaining your vehicle. I'm going to use my 20 plus years experience restoring and repairing cars and trucks like this to show you the correct way to install parts from 1AAuto.com. The right parts installed correctly, that's going to save you time and money. Thank you and enjoy the video.

In this video, we'll be showing you how to do a serpentine belt on this 1997 Pontiac Sunfire. All you need is a 15mm wrench and this procedure is the same for just about any Cavalier or Sunfire from 1995 to 05. First, using either an 8 mm or a 5/16 wrench. You want to disconnect the positive battery cable.

To remove the serpentine belt on one of these Cavaliers or Sunfires, a couple of important things. It's important to know where your belt routing diagram is, there, that will help you get your belt on correctly when you're putting the new one on. Just doing your own quick visual. Here's the belt going up and around the alternator and the belt going around the outside of the power steering. You can see the belt go straight from power steering to the alternator down in there. You can see the belt kind of go up and around the tensioner there. It goes down and around that way on the idler pulley then down there on the air conditioning compressor and you can't really see, but down and around that crank pulley.

What I recommend for removing is actually getting your wrench in from this side and then you're going to put it on your belt tensioner bolt; it's a 15 mm wrench. There's the wrench. It's connected it's hooked on to that bolt there. Now, what you want to do is just turn that bolt counter clockwise. As you can see as I press down on the wrench, you'll see the tension come off that belt and then you're going to just pull the belt right off of the alternator.

Then slowly release your wrench so that it will go back further than before. I'm going to take the wrench off and your belt will come up out like that. What you want to look for in the belt is you want to look for any cracking on the outside of the belt and then you also want to inspect the ribs, and this belt is actually in really good shape. You want to inspect for any cracking on the outside. You want to find where the belt seams which you can see kind of where it changes color here. That's where the belt is pressed together and that's where it will usually crack first. This one, again, looks like it's in good shape.

You're going to reference your diagram in trying to feed the belt down here. The hardest thing is getting it down and around the crank pulley at the bottom. You just kind of let it fall down in there. Put it down and around the AC pulley then pull it up, it's tight a little bit. In the left hand, I'm pulling it up around the crank pulley and also around the serpentine belt tensioner and I'll put it down around the power steering pulley and then pulling it up onto the alternator there. I got it on the power steering pump. It's on the alternator. It's around the serpentine tensioner. Let's see, I can't get there right in there. There, it's not on the idler pulley yet. It is down around my AC pulley and it's down around the crank pulley. It's definitely not correct. Now, what you can do is you're going to pull on the belt this way. You can kind of hook it onto the bolts that are on the idler pulley. I just heard it pull and it's no longer around my crank pulley.

I'm going to grab on to it. Pull it back around the crank pulley, back around the AC pulley. Then kind of hook it on to my idler pulley bolt here. Now, you know you kind of got it set up right. It's on my alternator. You could see down there, it's not hooked around the pulley but it's kind of hooked around the bolt. That's a good position preliminarily. We're going to take the wrench. I'm going to hook it on from the back side here, hooking it on to my belt tensioner, again, just like we had it. There's my wrench hooked on to that tensioner. Now, what I'm going to do is I'm going to pull and I'm going to reach through here and I'm going to pull on that wrench which is going to give me slack. Then with this hand, I'm pushing down and I'm pushing it the belt onto the idler pulley.

Then it's all on. We can do a quick check. Looks like it's on the power steering. It's on the alternator. It's down there on the AC compressor and it's down on the crank pulley as well. Now, we'll hook up the battery and start up the engine and make sure it's running correctly.

We hope this helps you out. Brought to you by www.1AAuto.com, your source for quality replacement parts and the best service on the internet. Please feel free to call us toll free 888-844-3393. We're the company that's here for you on the internet and in person.

Tools needed for replacement:

    Wrenches - Metric

  • 15mm Wrench
  • 8mm Wrench


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