Quick Answer: What Makes Serpentine Belts Break?

Is a serpentine belt the same as a timing belt?

Timing Belt.

Don’t get confused—a serpentine belt is not the same thing as a timing belt.

The serpentine belt and timing belt have very different functions in your vehicle.

The timing belt is located inside the engine and keeps the crankshaft and camshaft in sync..

How long will a cracked serpentine belt last?

With that being said most serpentine/drive belts can last for a very long time before they need to be replaced. The lifespan of the belt will depend mostly on the type of material it’s made of. Older style belts generally last about 50,000 miles, while those made from EPDM can last up to 100,000 miles.

What are the signs of a bad serpentine belt?

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Serpentine/Drive BeltSquealing noise from the front of the vehicle. If you notice a squealing noise coming from the front of your vehicle, it could be from the serpentine belt. … Power steering and AC not working. If the serpentine belt completely fails and breaks, then your car will break down. … Engine overheating. … Cracks and wear on the belt.

How often do serpentine belts break?

Most serpentine belts generally last between 50,000 and 100,000 miles. Eventually, your car’s serpentine belt will wear down from continuous exposure to heat and friction and will need to be replaced.

Can you replace a serpentine belt yourself?

Serpentine belt replacement is easy because today’s automatic drive belt tensioners eliminate the need to loosen bolts or pry components into position for retensioning. Just rotate the tensioner, remove the old belt and install a new one.

What damage can a broken serpentine belt cause?

This can lead to a sudden lost of power assist for the steering system, leading to the steering wheel all-of-a-sudden becoming very hard to turn. A broken serpentine belt may stop the water pump from circulating coolant through the cooling system, causing the engine can overheat.

How expensive is it to replace a serpentine belt?

It is very inexpensive to replace a serpentine belt whether it’s broken or loose. The replacement cost is only going to be between $100 and $200 in most cases. The belt itself will cost between $25 and $80 while the labor costs will probably be between $75 and $120.

Can a bad serpentine belt cause shaking?

Misadjusted or worn out timing belt and other belts just as the serpentine belt can cause engine vibrations. If these belts have become loose or worn out then they can also cause other parts of your engine such as fans to not operate properly – resulting in strange noises and shaking.

What does a bad serpentine belt sound like?

Think you might have a bad serpentine belt? A telltale sign is that the engine squealing comes from the front of the vehicle and that it persists. Belt squeaking is also especially pronounced when accelerating, on startup, and when making a U-turn. The noise is loud and sounds like a squeal, loud chirp, or squeak.

Will a broken timing belt destroy my engine?

The timing belt is a rubber belt that synchronizes the actions of both the camshaft and the crankshaft to keep your valves safely moving and keep your engine in good condition. If the timing belt that is a key part of the internal combustion engine is broken, this can cause the broken timing belt to destroy the engine.

Can a serpentine belt break while driving?

But if the serpentine belt in your vehicle does break during driving, the results can be terrifying – and potentially dangerous. … A broken serpentine belt stops the water pump from circulating coolant (antifreeze) through the cooling system, and the engine can overheat – anywhere!

Will a new serpentine belt improve performance?

The new belt does not slip therefore everything is turning and generating at full capacity, hence the improvement you see. Not really. All of your accessories(power steering, air-conditioning, etc.)

Can a serpentine belt cause a car not to start?

A serpentine belt has nothing to do with starting. Even when installed incorrectly or left off altogether the engine will start . … The seized alternator will prevent the starter to turn the engine over and the engine will not start.

What causes a serpentine belt to break?

Cause: Pulley misalignment is a common cause of premature belt failure. Misalignment forces the belt to kink or twist while running, causing premature wear. Solution: Replace the belt and make sure to realign the pulleys. Also check that the pulleys, pulley brackets and shafts are not bent or broken.

How long can a car run without serpentine belt?

around 70-90 minutesOnce it reads “normal” it only takes a short time before it gets too hot. The battery on the other hand, will happily run the car and accessories on average around 70-90 minutes without the alternator, provided you don’t have headlights or anything high-drain on.

Can antifreeze damage a serpentine belt?

Yes. Antifreeze will cause damage the rubber compound in the belts. If you do not replace it now then it will slip and may cause the water pump installer to not warranty the work.

Will a car start without a serpentine belt?

You CAN drive without a serpentine belt but, you won’t get far and will risk damaging the engine. Cars are designed to start and keep running for some time even after the serpentine belt has snapped, but that doesn’t mean that it’s a good idea to drive without it.