How to Replace the Serpentine Belt in a Dodge Caravanby Contributor
To replace the drive belt or serpentine belt on a Dodge Caravan, check the engine size. For 2.4L engines, a serpentine belt runs the air conditioning compressor and alternator. For 3.0L models, the alternator and power steering share a belt with a separate belt for the AC. Dodge recommends checking the belts every 15,000 miles or 12 months for possible replacement.
Use a flashlight to check a belt for wear. Look for any crumbling on either side of the belt. Noises may also be another wear indicator.
Find the belt tensioner. On most Dodge Caravan models, the drive belt tensioner will be toward the back of the engine area.
Loosen the upper locking nut using a wrench--specific size varies by model--and adjust the belt tensioner to relieve tension on the belt. For a power steering belt, you may need to loosen a pivot bolt. Depending on your engine and model, you may use a wrench on the tensioner bolt, or a ratchet tool that fits into the bolt structure.
Take the serpentine belt from the idler pulley and other components.
Check the routing diagram for your serpentine belt. You can find belt routing diagrams for the Dodge Caravan on the Dayco parts site, where the parts catalog comes with visual maps of drive belts.
Adjust the belt tensioner again to slip the new serpentine belt on and re-tension the belt.
Make sure the belt is seated on each pulley, and run the engine to test for appropriate tension on the belt.
Things You'll Need
- Wrench or ratchet tool to adjust the belt tensioner
- Replacement belts
- This is a general guide: check your Dodge Caravan model year for any different layouts of the belts or tensioner specifics.
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