Typical Cost: Low
Mobile Repair? Yes
Typical Lead Time: 4 - 24 hours depending on mechanic availability
The auxiliary drive belt drives the range of ancillary components used by the vehicle, which can include the alternator, power steering, air conditioning compressor, water pump and still in some rare cases, the cooling fan.
This belt has often incorrectly been assumed that it is the timing belt. The essential thing is, if you can see the belt, it's not the timing belt, it's the auxiliary drive belt!
The auxiliary belt is driven by the crankshaft pulley at the bottom of the engine. It is held firmly against the crankshaft pulley and so when it is turning the belt goes round and turns each of the pulleys on the circuit.
The bet is held fim usually by an automatic auxiliary drive belt tensioner and often there is also one or more guide rollers on the circuit as well to position the belt around the other devices. This is one of the reasons it is also referred to as a serpentine belt, literally because it twists around like a snake.
Alternators are almost always driven by the auxiliary drive belt, which is why it is often referred to as an alternator belt, especially when it breaks, as it’s the usually the most common indication that it has an issue.
The same can be said for the power steering pump, again, this is why it is often referred to as the power steering belt.
In reality, it is usually one belt that drives all the units, but some engines can have two belts to spread the load, especially if routing for one belt is not possible.
Typical symptoms of a problematic drive belt include;
Changing auxiliary drive belts is a routine repair for all mechanics and can be done both kerbside as well as in the workshop, providing it is safe to do so.
Whilst there are variations between manufacturers, the basics are pretty similar.
The mechanic will;
Unless otherwise stated, the quote for your auxiliary belt to be replaced will cover;
Auxiliary drive belt replacement
Auxiliary drive belt tensioner replacement
The cost of an auxiliary belt replacement depends on your car and what parts your car's manufacturer recommends.
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No, we will not fit customer supplied parts unless they are a brand new item, purchased from a dealership with the receipt as proof of purchase. There is no flexibility over this due to insurance and warranty issues.
In this scenario, the mechanic will provide a no obligation quote for the correct repair. Should you accept this, the mechanic can alter the booking accordingly. If you decide not to go ahead with the alternative repair, the mechanic can change the booking to a call out and diagnostic booking and charge according to the time spent with the vehicle and call out.