HOW TO: Change your serpentine belt on a 95-02 2.2L


Classicrocjunkie
10-30-2004, 01:19 AM
With all the false information people are saying about one of the simplist repairs to do... changing the serpentine belt..I have decided to take 30 min and compile all of this usefull info.. This is valad for 95-97 2.2L and 98-02 2200 SFI......

I will even include a color picture to help everyone figure out where there tensioner is, along with naming the other pullys that the serpentine belt rides on... lets begin...

http://files.automotiveforums.com/gallery/watermark.php?file=/500/1724872200.JPG

Brown circle- Power steering
Blue circle- Idler pully
Purple circle- Alternator pully
Green circle- A/C if applicable
Yellow circle- Water Pump pully
Pink circle- Crankshaft Pully

and finally...

Red Arrow points to your tensioner.. get a socket wrench w/o socket and place square end into hole or knotch w/e you want to call it and push down to release pressure, and short breaker bar may also be needed to get you more leverage... if you cannot figure out the tensior from this then you need to consult a mechanic or have a buddy lend you a hand. I would be more than willin to help anyone out in CNY.....other printed on the top of your hood is a diagram on how to re weave the belt on the pullys and on the back of some of the new belt boxes..

Note:
Now on the older 2.2l and 2.0 engines the tensioner is the idler pully, GM found out later down the line that it was best to just add a tensioner instead of using the idler... I don't have an exact year of when they changed becuase i have changed them on 96 with the tensioner and i've been gettin some feed back that 97's haven't so... if you the tensioner above use that and not the idler and if no tensioner use the blue circle... idler pully...Note


A serpentine belt is the only drive "belt" not to be confused with the drive chain, that a cavalier has and its also one of the most overlooked very important parts of your vehicle. Without it.. your basically going nowhere.

How do I know when i need a new belt?...

Here are some signs...

~Noticeable deep v cracks
~High pictched squeeling that only gets louder when more time passes

Over the years while driving my cavy, i have notice when the car starts up there was a squeeling noise comming from that part of the engine while the hood was closed so i took note of it and figured it was nothing. But as more time passed it had gotten worse. So i pyhsically inspected the belt and noticed it was dry rotting and had cracks deeper than allowed by NYS state inspection. So it was time for a new belt. When cracks form in the belt it causes the cracks to slide against eachother causing the annoying noise...

What brands are there?

Personally when i buy somthing that you need to be realiable and good quality cheaper isn't better...

Here are some brands i know of...

GM brand.. buy at dealership
Delco
Goodyear gatorback Poly V

All are of quality and serve their purpose.. Delco has a few differnet quality line ranging in price from 17 here in NY up to 27.99 for their POLY V... I personally run the Goodyear GatorBack POLY V since its the quietest belt made( Personal opinion and their sales pitch but so far its has held true)... After tax it was 32 somthing at Autozone... don't buy it from a goodyear Gemni store...they quoted me 60 somthing...

That basically sums it all up... g'luck and no more misguiding info!

KJRich
10-31-2004, 08:10 AM
Good write-up.

Langning
10-31-2004, 01:42 PM
On my 96 2.2 Cav LS, the tensioner is the idler pulley. The belt removing tool is too long to pull down to give me enough slack when putting the new belt on and I needed a low profile (thin) 3/8 ratchet with 15mm (?) hex socket. My Gatorback Poli V belt is only around $20 from my local autozone.

Classicrocjunkie
10-31-2004, 11:09 PM
prices differ by state and tax... tax here is 8.25%.... and the on the early model 2.2 you have to use the idler, don't you like your gatorback?... i love mine...

public
10-31-2004, 11:44 PM
Cool write up. Great photo. On the older 2.0 and 2.2 the idler is the tensioner and they have no idler.

I love the gatorback belt. It is the only one that last more than a year here in Fla.

jaccardi
06-28-2005, 10:19 AM
Man, I really appreciate this. I needed this information after replacing my alternator. Thank you.

johno1
06-28-2005, 05:42 PM
Need help in getting the idler puller tensioner loose. ANy tips, tricks would help. Used Wd 40. have a 97 2.2L. Belt came off. got the new belt on except around the idler.

Classicrocjunkie
06-28-2005, 08:30 PM
You need an angled box wrench, its going to require a little effort. I remembered i was only able to get 3 fingers on the wrench itself and oh boy were my fingers hurting after that. G'luck.

johno1
06-28-2005, 08:36 PM
Need help in getting the idler puller tensioner loose. ANy tips, tricks would help. Used Wd 40. have a 97 2.2L. Belt came off. got the new belt on except around the idler.

Thanks for the advise. Son is at school so we'll give it a go in the morning. Give the results...good or bad sometime tomorrow. Out

johno1
06-30-2005, 09:59 AM
You need an angled box wrench, its going to require a little effort. I remembered i was only able to get 3 fingers on the wrench itself and oh boy were my fingers hurting after that. G'luck.

Got the idler pulley moved, but belt still will not fit. Is there a sequence on how the belt goes on? for instance, does the belt
go over the idler last? Since it does not wrap around the idler (about an inch to go before it fits snuggly) do you use some kind of lever
to slide the belt over the idler?

KustmAce
06-30-2005, 07:25 PM
Thanks for the info Cody! Consider it stuck'd

Jjman969
07-24-2005, 05:15 PM
since the 97's 2.2's are quite a bit diff than that diagram if anyone needs a diagram for a 97 i got one

daveb2012
08-29-2005, 10:37 PM
wow man thanks so much for making this I have been spending the 2 days trying to find out where the tensioner pulley bolt was, I think Im not affraid to get a new serpentine belt now too, I purposely had to stretch it off because I couldn't release the tension. thanks a lot man.

daveb2012
08-29-2005, 10:49 PM
actually I have a 97, now im confused again.

jstillings
08-30-2005, 12:49 PM
This is a great thread and helpful picture. I need to change a water pump and have been struggling with getting the serp belt off first.

My '96 Cav 2.2L does not have the tensioner - so from your post I assume the tension is applied by the idler. Question is how to release the tension on the idler. I have the 15mm center bolt on the idler pulley almost loose, but am hesitant to take it out with the belt loaded... is there a release mechanism on the idler ass'y somewhere?

BTW, as you indicated, it took a lot of very small turns with an offset 15mm wrench to get the nut loose - not a lot of room in there.

thanks in advance.

vsLAN
08-31-2005, 01:08 AM
Is there a way to by-pass the A/C with a smaller belt? the A/C compressor went out, and we dont use the A/C... its a 97 Cavalier 2.2L

mileena
09-24-2005, 05:38 AM
This is a great thread and helpful picture. I need to change a water pump and have been struggling with getting the serp belt off first.

My '96 Cav 2.2L does not have the tensioner - so from your post I assume the tension is applied by the idler. Question is how to release the tension on the idler. I have the 15mm center bolt on the idler pulley almost loose, but am hesitant to take it out with the belt loaded... is there a release mechanism on the idler ass'y somewhere?

BTW, as you indicated, it took a lot of very small turns with an offset 15mm wrench to get the nut loose - not a lot of room in there.

thanks in advance.


On my 91 Cav 2.2, you put the 15 mm box wrench over the idler pulley bolt and press down on the wrench handle, clockwise (as if you were tightening the bolt). But the idler pulley moves down before the bolt tightens too much. The idler pulley springs back up when you take off the wrench. Don't be scared to press down on the wrench handle to move the pulley. Press down, clockwise, towards the ground. When the pulley is in the down position is when you remove and then install the new belt.

vamc
09-24-2005, 11:59 PM
On my 96 2.2 Cav LS, the tensioner is the idler pulley. The belt removing tool is too long to pull down to give me enough slack when putting the new belt on and I needed a low profile (thin) 3/8 ratchet with 15mm (?) hex socket. My Gatorback Poli V belt is only around $20 from my local autozone.


How far are you from HOLYOKE, sorry to be a little off subject. Just wondering.

jakegday
09-25-2005, 12:27 AM
How far are you from HOLYOKE, sorry to be a little off subject. Just wondering.

you might try emailing him, since his post is almost a year old....

Langning
09-26-2005, 03:52 PM
you might try emailing him, since his post is almost a year old....

I gave away my Cav and now spending time on the Grand Prix forum :). Marlblorugh, MA is probably 1 to 1.5 hours on I-90 from Holyoke, MA...

Re-reading of my original post, the low profile ratchet is called "Gear Ratchet" at Sear's retailing for around $40 or so a full set of MM/SAE 1/4 & 3/8 sockets. I used them on my other projects (especially on rear strut top nuts) and it is a time-saver... If anyone want to remove the belt on Cav, it is the must-have tool.

vamc
09-26-2005, 08:24 PM
ok!

03Ragtop
10-22-2005, 06:13 PM
Is there a way to by-pass the A/C with a smaller belt? the A/C compressor went out, and we dont use the A/C... its a 97 Cavalier 2.2L
Mine just crapped out on my 01 with only 65k miles. I'd love to just bypass it for the winter.

ricebike
10-28-2005, 06:20 PM
u can just bypass it when u goto the parts store & mention your car doesn't have AC... correct me if i'm wrong...

1stcavyz24
03-24-2006, 12:54 AM
would this write up work for my 99 2.4?

vamc
03-24-2006, 12:48 PM
Should!

1stcavyz24
03-24-2006, 01:14 PM
alright i guess i'll give it a shot then :P:)

Prophet222
04-26-2006, 04:52 PM
I know this thread is a little old, but...

I need a diagram for a 1996 2.2L *WITHOUT* the tensioner (tensioner/idler pulley combined). The parts stores don't have a diagram for this, they all include a seperate tensioner and seem to think I'm lying about not having one.

http://img255.imageshack.us/my.php?image=serpentine7to.png

Thanks in advance for any help at all!

Cavalier2000
04-26-2006, 04:57 PM
i would think your lying as well. Take a pic of the side of your engine somehow

Prophet222
04-26-2006, 05:09 PM
i would think your lying as well. Take a pic of the side of your engine somehow

You're probably a parts guy, too.

If you've worked on these, you know what you're asking is pretty much impossible without pulling the engine or having some super slim wide angle camera. Here's the best I can do.

http://img138.imageshack.us/img138/4346/img27294km.jpg

This is a shot of the PS pulley. If it had a seperate tensioner, it would be right below. It does not.

Prophet222
04-26-2006, 07:56 PM
Finally got it. If this ever comes up for someone else...

http://img270.imageshack.us/img270/6114/serpentine1mr.png

This is for a 2.2L in a Cavalier with a manufacture date of 1/96.

ricebike
04-27-2006, 08:38 AM
I know this thread is a little old, but...

I need a diagram for a 1996 2.2L *WITHOUT* the tensioner (tensioner/idler pulley combined). The parts stores don't have a diagram for this, they all include a seperate tensioner and seem to think I'm lying about not having one.

http://img255.imageshack.us/my.php?image=serpentine7to.png

Thanks in advance for any help at all!

Prophet, that's the weirdest ?... u do have a tensioner/idler pulley combined on that vehicle... it's right next to your power steering belt pulley!

Prophet222
04-28-2006, 12:08 AM
Prophet, that's the weirdest ?... u do have a tensioner/idler pulley combined on that vehicle... it's right next to your power steering belt pulley!

okay, I think I worded my question poorly. What I meant is

"I need a diagram for this car without the seperate tensioner

my idler and tensioner are combined into a single device"



anyhow no worries all problems solved

Cavalier2000
04-28-2006, 09:55 AM
sounds a little better, i though you were saying you had something like an old school motor were you lossen the altenator to get the belt off

Cavalier2000
04-28-2006, 09:57 AM
o and not parts guy here I work in a law firm

spazmo
07-07-2006, 12:28 PM
nice pic.... very helpfull...just thought id add this to get this closer to the top where it woulda stopped me from makin a new thread.....i know lots o ppl probably can use that pic...

rayzur9
10-02-2006, 12:13 PM
1999 Pontiac Sunfire GT 2.4 L Serpentine belt.
No room between tensioner pulley and firewall to even put the flat bar tool with the short socket extension rented from Autozone in between there to "turn" the tensioner pulley. Thats all B.S. anyways.
Take a bar, any bar, even a broom handle, and push DOWN on the top of the tensioner pulley arm. This will push the arm down, and you WILL have to hold it down, or it will spring back up on ya. You can fully remove the belt at this point. For installation, get your belt all wound around the right pulleys and leave this tensioner and the alternator for last step.
Push again down on the tensioner pulley arm, and slip the belt over the alternator pulley. DONT EVEN READ the CHILTON MANUAL ON THIS, I spent three days trying to do different things to use a socket/wrench/etc. to rotate the pulley, and there just is not a way to do it.
Push down on the pulley arm from the top with a bar or broom handle and you will find it easy to remove/install your serpentine belts.

ALSO, just had my temperature sensor wires come off the bracket clip from the bottom of the overflow tank and the wires fell into the belt and it sanded the wires/plastic covering down to the bare wires. Check this and use a ziptie to restore location.

Lockdown_2001
10-31-2007, 03:01 PM
On my 91 Cav 2.2, you put the 15 mm box wrench over the idler pulley bolt and press down on the wrench handle, clockwise (as if you were tightening the bolt). But the idler pulley moves down before the bolt tightens too much. The idler pulley springs back up when you take off the wrench. Don't be scared to press down on the wrench handle to move the pulley. Press down, clockwise, towards the ground. When the pulley is in the down position is when you remove and then install the new belt.

I have an 87 cavalier 2.0 I4 and I'm trying to put the belt on. The tensioner looks like this:

http://info.rockauto.com/Gates/38109.jpg

Is the way to relive tension the method mentioned above?

colesb
11-05-2007, 10:09 AM
Great diagram. I had a 2000 cavalier and this was spot on to change the belt. Now I have an 04 Cavalier and it is completely different. Only 4 pulleys and the belt can't be 14" in diameter. The engine is mounted so close to the side, how do I get in there to access the tensioner? I'm thinking there has to be something easier than dropping the engine! Thanks

ricebike
11-05-2007, 10:48 PM
Great diagram. I had a 2000 cavalier and this was spot on to change the belt. Now I have an 04 Cavalier and it is completely different. Only 4 pulleys and the belt can't be 14" in diameter. The engine is mounted so close to the side, how do I get in there to access the tensioner? I'm thinking there has to be something easier than dropping the engine! Thanks


hmm, u gotta remove the pass side wheel, mebbe jack and keep that side up in the air to work underneath as needed....

i remember taking off the plastic wheel wellshield on my sis' 97 model

to have better access to routing the belt. so this part may be optional

then i used this:

http://www.etoolcart.com/ProductImages/lisle/LIS57600.jpg

free loan tool from autozone to release the tensioner while a buddy removes/ reinstalls serp belt:popcorn:

construct30
11-22-2007, 12:36 AM
I have a 97 and changed the belt myself. I used an off set box end craftsman wrench and cussed a lot, a helper would have been great. I put the box end wrench on the tensioner and turned clockwise and no big deal, just a tight pain a couple of inches more for a socket would have been nice. The newer cars are easier. Someone should change the title of this thread, because it does not work for a least the 97. Be prepared, you can get a short socket on there, but once the tension is off you can't get the socket back off and you can't get the new belt on with the socket stuck on there in the way. The right tool would help, but it is possible with the off set box end wrench.

mark

xr0nx
02-08-2008, 10:56 PM
i know this thread is pretty old but does anyone have 97 cavalier 2.2l belt diagram? because some one reply to this thread that this thread does not applied to 97 cavalier? so i wonder does anyone have the belt diagram for it? i just replace my new alternator and new belt too. autozone gave me the diagram and its does not match.

Lockdown_2001
02-08-2008, 11:29 PM
The pulley your looking for is the idler pulley, do any of the diagrams the first person posted look like your setup?

Classicrocjunkie
02-09-2008, 01:49 AM
http://files.automotiveforums.com/gallery/watermark.php?file=/500/1724872200.JPG

You just don't have the tensioner. Your tensioner is the idler pulley. If you don't have A/c let me know and i'll tell you the routing.

xr0nx
02-09-2008, 03:35 AM
97 CAVALIER 2.2L OHV
My engine belt route set up is little different from the first #1 picture that post up there. The belt route in my car look like the #2 simple belt diagram and I did the #2 set up and its work. Just use the wrench and turn in the way to tighten the 97's "TENSIONER" - actual name "IDLER PULLEY" that would move the belt and give your belt a space to get on the alternator. Picture #2 diagram is successful for 97 cavalier


Picture #1 Cavalier YR 98+ 2200 SFIhttp://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg71/publicx/watermarkphp.jpg
Picture #2 MAY APPY TO 97 Cavalier 2.2L OHV/PUSHRODhttp://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg71/publicx/serpentine1mr.png
MY FIRST SET UP BEFORE REMOVING OLD ALTERNATOR.http://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg71/publicx/alt.jpg

abigpapa2cul
03-13-2008, 07:51 PM
97 CAVALIER 2.2L OHV
My engine belt route set up is little different from the first #1 picture that post up there. The belt route in my car look like the #2 simple belt diagram and I did the #2 set up and its work. Just use the wrench and turn in the way to tighten the 97's "TENSIONER" - actual name "IDLER PULLEY" that would move the belt and give your belt a space to get on the alternator. Picture #2 diagram is successful for 97 cavalier


Picture #1 Cavalier YR 98+ 2200 SFIhttp://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg71/publicx/watermarkphp.jpg
Picture #2 MAY APPY TO 97 Cavalier 2.2L OHV/PUSHRODhttp://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg71/publicx/serpentine1mr.png
MY FIRST SET UP BEFORE REMOVING OLD ALTERNATOR.http://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg71/publicx/alt.jpgDude,thank you for your diagram,I tried from 11:00 in the morning till 5:00 in the afternoon to put that belt on. When I saw your diagram, I said to myself,Oh my God. The first one ain't even my motor. My air filter hose comes out of my throttle body and goes straight to my air filter. Hey man thanks again.

Frankenstipe
04-09-2008, 11:07 PM
Thanks for making this thread, it's really hard to find good info on the Cavalier online.

I had to replace the Water Pump on my sisters 97 Cavalier and now I'm trying to get the serpentine belt on but it just won't go on. I've been trying to wrap it around the idler pulley last but trying to keep the box end wrench on the nut is hard enough with 2 hands let alone 1. I even tried using my dad to hold the wrench down while I slipped the belt on but there's just not enough slack. He said he had it pushed down as far as he could get it but there were hoses in the way. Is there any other way to go about doing this or should we just keep trying?

:banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead:

lilredcar22
07-08-2008, 07:01 AM
Thanks to whoever mentioned belt conf sticker on the hood, was going crazy looking all around the engine compartment. (my belt broke, had no idea of the config). Note: I found it easiest to slip the belt over the alternator pulley while pushing down on the idler. Here's a modified pic, incase anyone is missing theirs and wants to print out another.
http://i250.photobucket.com/albums/gg249/dogtoon/22serpbelt.png

sachiel
10-16-2008, 10:29 PM
actually I have a 97, now im confused again.

From 95 to 97 te tensor pulley is the idler, 98 to 02 the configuration of the motor change a little by agregating a tensioner and other things (position of the ign coils, fuel injector line, etc.).
the first piture diagram works in 98-02 2.2l engine and the 95-97 is another i have the diagrams if somebody needs, please tell me.
Sorry for my poor english, but im from mexico i hope you cand understand me & i want to be helpfull as posible.

ballizticbucket
10-25-2008, 07:46 AM
ok my belt tensioner bolt came loose and made the tensioner spring unspring. I used a wire with a looped end to hook the springs hooked end and pulled it into place but now I cant get the bolt tightened because there is no room between the frame rail and the popped out front of the tensioner. what do I do? try to get a wrench in there or buy a whole new tensioner and is it possible to replace the tensioner with the engine in the car? please help. thanx, marc e-mail tuffytime@msn.com













With all the false information people are saying about one of the simplist repairs to do... changing the serpentine belt..I have decided to take 30 min and compile all of this usefull info.. This is valad for 95-97 2.2L and 98-02 2200 SFI......

I will even include a color picture to help everyone figure out where there tensioner is, along with naming the other pullys that the serpentine belt rides on... lets begin...

http://files.automotiveforums.com/gallery/watermark.php?file=/500/1724872200.JPG

Brown circle- Power steering
Blue circle- Idler pully
Purple circle- Alternator pully
Green circle- A/C if applicable
Yellow circle- Water Pump pully
Pink circle- Crankshaft Pully

and finally...

Red Arrow points to your tensioner.. get a socket wrench w/o socket and place square end into hole or knotch w/e you want to call it and push down to release pressure, and short breaker bar may also be needed to get you more leverage... if you cannot figure out the tensior from this then you need to consult a mechanic or have a buddy lend you a hand. I would be more than willin to help anyone out in CNY.....other printed on the top of your hood is a diagram on how to re weave the belt on the pullys and on the back of some of the new belt boxes..

Note:
Now on the older 2.2l and 2.0 engines the tensioner is the idler pully, GM found out later down the line that it was best to just add a tensioner instead of using the idler... I don't have an exact year of when they changed becuase i have changed them on 96 with the tensioner and i've been gettin some feed back that 97's haven't so... if you the tensioner above use that and not the idler and if no tensioner use the blue circle... idler pully...Note


A serpentine belt is the only drive "belt" not to be confused with the drive chain, that a cavalier has and its also one of the most overlooked very important parts of your vehicle. Without it.. your basically going nowhere.

How do I know when i need a new belt?...

Here are some signs...

~Noticeable deep v cracks
~High pictched squeeling that only gets louder when more time passes

Over the years while driving my cavy, i have notice when the car starts up there was a squeeling noise comming from that part of the engine while the hood was closed so i took note of it and figured it was nothing. But as more time passed it had gotten worse. So i pyhsically inspected the belt and noticed it was dry rotting and had cracks deeper than allowed by NYS state inspection. So it was time for a new belt. When cracks form in the belt it causes the cracks to slide against eachother causing the annoying noise...

What brands are there?

Personally when i buy somthing that you need to be realiable and good quality cheaper isn't better...

Here are some brands i know of...

GM brand.. buy at dealership
Delco
Goodyear gatorback Poly V

All are of quality and serve their purpose.. Delco has a few differnet quality line ranging in price from 17 here in NY up to 27.99 for their POLY V... I personally run the Goodyear GatorBack POLY V since its the quietest belt made( Personal opinion and their sales pitch but so far its has held true)... After tax it was 32 somthing at Autozone... don't buy it from a goodyear Gemni store...they quoted me 60 somthing...

That basically sums it all up... g'luck and no more misguiding info!

Trip84
02-13-2009, 04:49 PM
I've changed the belt on my 95 2.2 cavalier 3 times. With the tensioner built into the idler pulley, I've found the easiest way to do it, by far, is to save putting the belt on the alternator till last. In fact this is the only way I've ever been able to do the job by myself without a second person.

This last time, though, when I blew the belt, the engine vapor locked. I put new coolant in, but the low-coolant light keeps coming on. Any suggestions?

roonie
06-27-2009, 02:07 PM
does anyone have a diagram and tips on how to do a serpentine belt on a 97 2.4lt twin cam. I see they are much different than a 2.2lt

wcowell2000
01-05-2010, 10:21 PM
This car is a pain to change. Take it to a shop and pay the $60 bucks.

wcowell2000
01-05-2010, 10:23 PM
I looked everywhere to. Felt like a moron when I found it.

J-Ri
01-05-2010, 10:40 PM
This car is a pain to change. Take it to a shop and pay the $60 bucks.

Seriously? It's one of the easiest FWD 4 cylinder belts to change. But hey, bring 'em in!, I'll take your money and do the job in 5 minutes :)

seoinage
03-15-2010, 05:11 PM
I know this is an old thread, but I am having serious issues with my wife's tensioner on her car. It came apart spring is visible etc. The issue is the fact that I can not get in there to get the bolt undone, because part of the tensioner is in the way, and it won't come off because it hits the frame of the car. I tried removing the spring so I could push this piece back in and get to the bolt but no luck so far. If anyone here can offer me suggestions I would appreciate it. About ready to destroy something. thanks

1ATony
01-25-2011, 03:59 PM
Here's a great video that will show you how to change the belt in your Sunfire.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UknSxqcguLw

plcboy
09-12-2011, 01:18 AM
hi I was reading this article but the gallery address not showing any photo and I think it is a important one. Can you please look into this situation
Thanks a lot
http://files.automotiveforums.com/gallery/watermark.php?file=/500/1724872200.JPG

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