It is vital to inspect your vehicle's belts and hoses on a regular basis because often times a damaged piece has serious effects on the condition of your vehicle. Research shows that while most people are attentive when it comes to regular oil changes, they hardly devote any concern at all to the condition of their belts and hoses. A leaking hose or a cracked belt will cause you more trouble than an overdue oil change ever will! The following is a brief description of some of the different belts and hoses we inspect:
Visual Inspection of Belts
● Search for clear indications of
damage (cracking, glazing, softening, or peeling)
● Test for correct tension
● Test for correct alignment
● Record belt condition for future
Visual Inspection of Hoses
● Search for leaks, cracks, hardening,
● Test cooling system for leaks using
state-of-the-art pressure technology
● Record hose condition for future
Get your vehicle's belts and hoses inspected on a regular basis because
damaged pieces can seriously harm your vehicle. Research shows that while
most people get regular oil changes, they neglect the condition of their
belts and hoses. A leaking hose or a cracked belt will cause you more
trouble than an overdue oil change ever will.
Below are brief descriptions of some of the different belts and hoses we
The engine itself is used as a power source to drive some of your vehicle's accessories. Instead of being supplied by electric power, these accessories rely on a series of pulleys and belts to operate. Some of these accessories include:
Most older vehicles require a single serpentine belt to power these accessories (as opposed to several individual belts).
If you think of hoses as your vehicle's circulatory system, then you'll have an appropriate representation of how important they are. Channeling car fluids to their correct destination, hoses are composed of two rubber layers with fabric in between. Types of hoses vary on make and model, but typically they include:
Fuel hose (sends gasoline from the gas tank to the engine)
Radiator hose (delivers coolant to engine)
Power steering hose (connects power steering pump to steering equipment)
Heater hose (provides coolant to heater core)
You know that long belt
that snakes around the front of your engine? It’s called the serpentine
belt. The serpentine belt is driven by the engine as it turns.
It powers your alternator, air conditioning compressor,
and power steering pump. On some vehicles it also runs
the water pump, radiator fan, and power brakes.
Sounds like a lot of important stuff doesn’t it?
If your serpentine belt were to break on one of our
roads, your battery would die in a few miles. If it runs your fan or
water pump, your engine could overheat. And steering and braking
could be more difficult. Obviously, the best thing is to replace
your serpentine belt before it breaks.
Check your owner’s manual for when it’s recommended that you replace
your serpentine belt – or just ask our service
advisor for assistance. We can inspect the belt as well to
see if it’s in trouble.
You may have been told by a service advisor to look for
cracks in your belt to see if it needs to be replaced. Of course,
cracks are still a concern, but modern belt material doesn’t crack
as often as old belts did. What we look for these days is the
thickness of the belt. There are tools available that measures the
depth of the grooves in the belt to see if it needs replacing.
A worn belt can slip (squeal) or be misaligned, putting undue stress on the
accessories it runs.
Now you can imagine it’s important for the belt to be tight, so
there’s a tensioner pulley on your engine that puts pressure
on the belt to keep it at the right tension. The spring on the
tensioner wears out over time so we recommend replacing the
tensioner pulley at the same time as the serpentine belt.
Replacing your serpentine belt on schedule, or when an inspection
warrants it, will keep you from an unexpected breakdown.
Radiator & Coolant Hoses
Cooling hoses should be
replaced every 5 years or 100,000 miles.
TIMING BELTS.... WHAT ARE THEY?
Piston engines can generally be divided into two groups-Interference
AND non-interference engines.
If a timing belt breaks on a non-Interference engine the engine will
'free-wheel' and the piston will not contact the valves.
On the other hand, interference engines will not 'free-wheel".
Severe valve train and piston damage can result if the timing belt
breaks while the engine is running.
TIMING BELT REPLACEMENT GUIDE
Most manufactures have recommended replacement Intervals for
replacing timing belts. A typical service Interval in between 50,000
and 60,000 miles. It is important to replace timing belts at
recommended Intervals even if the vehicle has a non-interference
engine. Proper maintenance prevents expensive tow bills and possible
accidents due to loss of engine power while traveling at highway