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How to Replace the Drive Belt on a Mazda MPV

by Eli Laurens

The Mazda Multi-Purpose Vehicle (MPV) is a minivan that uses a serpentine drive belt system to power several pulley-operated pumps and devices. This belt can wear with age, and require replacement. Several engine choices were available for the MPV, but all use a similar belt system. The primary drive belt on a Mazda MPV can be replaced by the average backyard mechanic in about 20 minutes.

Disconnect the battery by turning the positive terminal bolt counterclockwise. Lay the terminal aside.

Firmly press the tension pulley arm until there is enough slack to slide the belt from the idle pulley at the top of the motor. Release the tension pulley arm.

Remove the slackened belt from the alternator pulley wheel and the air conditioning compressor pulley wheel, if applicable. This will dramatically loosen the belt, and it can then be removed from the remaining pulley wheels and engine crank pulley. Make a note of the belt's path through the engine.

Pull the loose belt from the engine compartment and replace it with a new unit.

Slide the drive belt over the engine crank pulley first, at the center of the motor. Pulley wheels that require torque are grooved, and passing pulleys are smooth. Loop the belt over the water pump, power steering pump, and the emissions air pump. Continue to position the belt over the A/C compressor and alternator, which may become increasingly harder as the belt slack tightens.

Press the tension pulley arm firmly and slide the drive belt underneath the idle pulley. Release the tension pulley arm and the belt will tighten around all of the components to the proper tension.

Reconnect the battery by turning the positive terminal clockwise into the battery post until it is snug.

Tip

  • Use fan belt dressing spray to condition the new belt.

Warning

  • Use caution when working on the front of an engine.

Items you will need

About the Author

Eli Laurens is a ninth-grade physics teacher as well as a computer programmer and writer. He studied electrical engineering and architecture at Southern Polytechnic University in Marietta, Ga., and now lives in Colorado.

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