How to Tighten a Mazda 323 Drive Belt

by Shayrgo Barazi

Although a reliable and very affordable little car, some components on the Mazda 323 may need replacing over time. The drive belts on your Mazda 323 will inevitably loosen and start to squeal at start-up or while turning. To correct this annoyance and to prevent a break down, tighten the drive belts if you detect that they have loosened. Tightening the drive belts is straightforward and can be accomplished with a few basic tools in under 30 minutes.

Open the hood and prop it up.

Place a ruler against the loose belt and push down it. Measure how far down you are able to push it. If you can push it down more than 1/2 inch, then tighten the belt.

Tighten the belt tensioner with a ratchet or wrench. The tensioner will be located adjacent to the belt and will have a long bolt going through it; tighten this bolt.

Measure the belt deflection again. If it is over 1/2 inch, keep tightening; if it is under, loosen it to prevent damage to the engine accessory.


  • check If you cannot reach the tensioner or lock bolt with a ratchet, you may need to use a small wrench to get to them.


  • close Wear safety glasses to protect your eyes from injury.

Items you will need


About the Author

Shayrgo Barazi is a college graduate with a degree in automotive engineering technology (B.S.c.) from Ferris State University. He is a successful writer and has taken a college level technical writing course. He currently works for Time Wave Media writing automotive DIY articles. He has an intuition for technology and has the capacity to write, too.