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Old 04-01-2011, 09:25 AM   #1
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couple of tips, serp belt & rad draincock

these things are based on issues i recently had and figured out and didnt really find any adequate info here (or elsewhere) that helped.
while changing my serpentine belt on my 97 with a 2.5 (power steering and no a/c) I encounted a couple things:
first, never trust the parts store to give you the right part. research it yourself on their website and take them the part number. even a few millimeters of difference can be the deciding factor between the belt fitting or not. i have read a lot of info on the web about guys fighting to get the belts to fit. if this is the case, ITS THE WRONG BELT.
the belts are sold in millimeter size and its important to have the correct one for your options (a/c or not and ps or not)
if the belt is too small and you shoehorn it on, you can bind your pulleys and end up burning up a bearing and ruining an otherwise good part.
that being said, the haynes/chilton manuals suck and completely show the installatioun procedure for the belt incorrectly.
the tensioner bolt to the left and below the power steering pump (when facing the engine) is probably rusted and prone to break. if its tight, just put a long ass pipe on the ratchet and go ahead and snap it off., remove the assembly completely.
here is what i did: i cut off the ends of the long tensioner bolt, lubricated the pulley bolt that passes through the same block and installed it like an old school v-belt. just use a pry bar, get the tension you need and tighten it. mine is working just fine with no long bolt, just one tight bolt through the brackets adjustment slide.

as for the radiator, the one that came in my jeep was an older, all metal style that was rotting at the top. i bought one from a junk yard out of a 99 but it had no draincock and the older style one in my radiator didnt fit. the dealer was out of them and they were 28 bucks, though the local napa store had them in stock and for 5 bucks and it was both pieces, the plug and the insert. (no modifying like the generic help ones sold at autozone)

hope it helps someone.

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Old 04-01-2011, 09:36 AM   #2
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If OEM put a bolt there it probably serves a purpose. But hey if it works for you it works! That being said i'd still wanna put that "long bolt" your talking about back in. But to each his own.

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Old 04-01-2011, 12:41 PM   #3
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the only reason the long bolt is there is to push the pulley out or retract it in so you dont have to put leverage on it. with the old style v belts, you have to use leverage to tighten the belt, then tighten the bolt that would hold it in place.
in this case, without the long tension bolt, you apply leverage and tighten the bottom bolt which slide along in the track on the bottom of the power steering pump bracket. just get the belt tight and then tighten the bolt, this bolt is what holds it.
the reason i am explaining this is because the cheap manuals dont list this repair and the part stores dont have the part. if like mine, the bolt is rusty and breaks, then you dont have to be screwed with no way to fix it, you just continue on.
i have a fab shop, i could have drilled and tapped the hole and replaced the bolt, but thats a lot of work for nothing and most people dont have those accomodations.
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Old 04-01-2011, 01:53 PM   #4
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Thanks for your thoughts and tips.

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Old 04-01-2011, 03:30 PM   #5
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Okay got yah. I have the I6 and that long bolt on mine was definitely needed lol that's why i was wondering
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