Thread: changing belts?
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Old 12-22-2004, 10:49 AM   #4
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Re: any one have trouble changing belts? looks hard to reach

You probably don't want to go to all the trouble. You might be able to get the 4 nuts holding the fan on while the shroud is in place, but it won't be fun and is really best done with the shroud removed. Plus it's real easy to drop the nuts that hold the fan on and they end up in places that are hard to see and get to, even with the shroud removed. But, if you're game (and it's a real good time to clean out your radiator while you're at it), here's how:
  • Remove the front splash guard under the front of the vehicle, 6 bolts, remove 5, leave the center rear one in place but loosened 3-4 turns, the hole in the plate is a notch and it will slide off it and you won't have to support the plate as you work.
  • From below, unclip the bottom semi-circlular portion of the fan shroud from the rest of the shroud, this will allow the shroud to lift out with the fan in place.
  • If you have an automatic transmission vehicle, feel along the bottom of the fan shroud for the transmission cooling circuit lines and pull them out of the clips on either side of the fan shroud.
  • Back up top, near the driver's side of the radiator, remove the bolt holding the bracket for the plastic intake resonator tube and pull the resonator tube out of the intake behind the headlight.
  • Remove the bolt holding the coolant overflow reservior near the passenger side of the radiator.
  • Remove the two (plastic I think) bolts holding the fan shroud to the top of the radiator.
  • I believe you will need to disconnect the small rubber hose from the radiator neck to the overflow reservoir.
  • Disconnect the upper radiator hose from the radiator. You will spill several ounces of coolant so be prepared to collect as much as possible to re-use if possible, or properly dispose of otherwise. Promptly rinse any coolant that spills in the engine bay and on the ground, thoroughly diluting it so that it cannot present a harm to animals/pets that might drink it.
  • Position/secure the end of the hose so that it points upwards to minimize coolant loss.
  • You should now be able to lift the shroud out, but it will not go easily and require a little tugging. Watch the sides for obstructions, particularly the passenger side, there is something that it will catch on as I recall.
  • Take care not to allow anything to hit the back of the radiator and damage the fins.
  • You can now remove the 4 nuts holding the fan and remove the fan.
  • You can now easily access the belts for replacement. Be sure that there is no coolant that can contact the new belts, it will damage them.
While you're at it, now is a perfect time to clean out your radiator...
  • Remove the two nuts holding the plates that secure the top of the radiator against the front of the engine bay (radiator support).
  • Tilt the radiator back and remove any debris between the radiator and the A/C condenser, take care not strike the cooling fins.
  • Tilt the radiator back into position, and carefully use a hose with your thumb over the end (moderate water pressure) to thoroughly rinse the radiator from back to front, particularly the lower portion. The water should flow clear, and if there's any mud etc. in there, it may take a while, keep at it.
  • Tilt the radiator back again and carefully (do not damage the fins) rinse the A/C condenser from back to front, again paying attention to the lower portion. Space is tight towards the bottom, watch your knuckles and the hose near the fins.

Reassembly is pretty much the exact opposite of assembly. The shroud will go in about as smoothly as it came out, a little shoving may be needed, watch for snags. Also be sure to rinse off any coolant that spills when you re-attach the hose (especially the belts) and top off the coolant when you're done.

Good luck,

Schlud, this might be a good one to move to the how-to section in a bit...
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