Any driver who understands preventive maintenance, knows that “if it ain't broke, don't fix it” is not always the best auto advice. Most of the time, replacing a part before it breaks is much more cost effective for residents than after the component has failed. A good example of this is the serpentine belt.
The serpentine belt gets its name because of its circuitous path around the engine. The serpentine belt is driven by the engine and powers a number of other components and various other systems, such as:
1. The serpentine belt spins the A/C Compressor. This component contributes to the cool air generated from the air conditioning system.
2. The serpentine belt powers the alternator. The alternator generates electricity for use in the vehicle's electrical systems and to charge the battery. Without the alternator, the battery wouldn't last more than a few miles, leaving the vehicle stranded.
3. In many vehicles, the serpentine belt runs both the power steering pump and the vacuum pump for power brakes. In other vehicles, the power steering pump may be electric and the power brakes may use a engine supplied vacuum booster.
4. On many vehicles, the serpentine belt drives the water pump. The water pump keeps coolant circulating through the engine and radiator to maintain appropriate operating temperatures. In some vehicles, a timing belt runs the water pump and is recommended to be changed with the Timing Belt service interval.
When a serpentine belt fails, all of these systems are greatly affected as well. Serpentine belt failure can be prevented by replacing the belt when there are signs of improper wear, or cracking. This is one service you want to stay proactive about.
Our technicians at Best Auto Repair Experience are trained to inspect your belt with every service. If you are experiencing any noises from the engine, have your vehicle inspected as soon as possible to help prevent unnecessary serpentine belt failures and breakdowns.