Exposure to heat, vibration and contamination makes belts and hoses
wear out faster than any other components in your car. That's why
regular inspections are so important. Here are the belt and hose
types in your car, along with their applications.
Accessory Drive Belts
While some accessories in your car are electrically powered by the
charging system, others use the engine itself as their power source.
The power for these accessories is delivered by a system of pulleys
of these accessories are:
Water Pump for engine cooling
Power Steering Pump
Air Conditioning Compressor
Radiator Cooling Fan
Many late model cars use a single serpentine
belt in place of individual belts to drive these accessories.
hoses that convey your car's fluids are made of two rubber layers
with a layer of fabric in between. Typical hoses include:
Radiator and Heater Hoses - These hoses convey coolant to the
engine and heater core.
Fuel Hose - As the name implies, this hose transports gasoline
from the tank to the engine.
Power Steering Hose - It connects the power steering pump to the
You know that long belt that snakes around the front of your engine? It’s called the serpentine belt.
The serpentine belt is driven by the engine as it turns.
It powers your alternator, air conditioning
compressor, and power steering pump. On some vehicles it also runs the water pump, radiator fan,
and power brakes. Sounds like a lot of important stuff doesn’t it?
If your serpentine belt were to break on one of our Northeast Ohio roads, your battery would die in a
few miles. If it runs your fan or water pump, your engine could overheat. And steering and braking
could be more difficult. Obviously, the best thing is to replace your serpentine belt before it
Check your owner’s manual for when it’s recommended that you replace your serpentine belt – or just
ask your Macedonia or Nordonia Ohio service advisor at Nordonia Tire & Service in Northfield OH. He can inspect the belt as well to
see if it’s in trouble.
You may have been told by a service advisor in Macedonia to look for cracks in your belt to see if it
needs to be replaced. Of course, cracks are still a concern, but modern belt material doesn’t crack as
often as old belts did. What we look for these days is the thickness of the belt. We have a special
little tool at Nordonia Tire & Service that measures the depth of the grooves in the belt to see if
it needs replacing.
A worn belt can slip or be misaligned, putting undue stress on the accessories it runs.
Now you can imagine it’s important for the belt to be tight, so there’s a tensioner pulley on your
engine that puts pressure on the belt to keep it at the right tension. The spring on the tensioner
wears out over time so we recommend replacing the tensioner pulley at the same time as the serpentine
Replacing your serpentine belt on schedule, or when an inspection warrants it, will keep you from an
Let's address a very important maintenance item for everyone in Macedonia Ohio – timing belt
replacement. It's important because letting this one slide can lead to very expensive engine damage.
Your timing belt choreographs the timing of your combustion process. Your pistons
travel up and down in the cylinder. Intake valves open at the right time to let in air and fuel, they
close at the right time to allow the fuel to burn and then the exhaust valves open at the right time
to let out the exhaust.
All this happens thousands of times a minute and it's your timing belt that makes sure the valves are
opening and closing at precisely the right time. If the timing is off, your engine won't run. And
that's the best case.
The worst case is that a valve is opening at the wrong time and collides with the piston. The result
is bent valves and maybe even more damage to the cylinder head. Repairs can run several thousand
Now, timing belts just wear out naturally so you want to replace a worn belt before it slips or
breaks. Check your owner's manual or with your service advisor at Nordonia Tire & Service in
Northfield Ohio to see when they recommend you replace the timing belt. If you've never replaced
your timing belt and have 60,000 or more miles on the clock, talk with your Macedonia service
advisor at Nordonia Tire & Service right away to see if you're due.
On some engines, the water pump is driven by the timing belt as opposed to the serpentine belt. If
that's the case, it's a good idea to replace the water pump when you're replacing the timing belt, and
vice versa since much of the same work has to be done for either. The same is true for the timing belt
tensioner – it should be inspected and possibly replaced.
Now, replacing a timing belt is one of the more expensive routine maintenance items on your service
schedule. But not replacing your timing belt can lead to some of the most expensive repairs you're
likely to ever have.
Simple Answers from Nordonia Tire & Service for Macedonia:
Timing Belt Replacement
My friend had a broken timing belt and it was very expensive to repair his engine. What can I do to
avoid a broken timing belt?
Nordonia Tire & Service Answer:
Well, a broken timing belt can lead to one of the most expensive engine repairs Macedonia drivers
will ever face. The good news is that replacing your timing belt on its recommended schedule can help
avoid those problems. Here's a brief overview of what the timing belt does:
Air is drawn into the cylinder of the engine through the intake valves. After the air and fuel mixture
is burned, it's pushed out through the exhaust valves. The timing belt, which is driven by the engine,
turns the camshafts which control when the intake and exhaust valves open and close. It is that the
opening and closing of the valves take place at exactly the right time for the engine to run properly.
Beyond that, on some vehicle engines the valves actually extend into the combustion chamber far enough
that they can be hit by the piston as it moves up and down in the cylinder. When everything is timed
just right – no problem. When the timing is off, the piston will slam into the valves and cause big
damage for Macedonia drivers.
The timing belt makes sure everything is timed just right. However, the belt does have a useful life.
Beyond that it can break or slip – and that's when the damage can be done. If your vehicle has a
timing belt (some have metal timing chains) it will have a recommended interval for replacing it. Be
sure to check your owner's manual or with service advisor at Nordonia Tire & Service in Northfield
Ohio to make sure
you know when your timing belt needs to be replaced: there is a lot at stake.
Now, getting to the timing belt requires a lot of labor so it is service item, but it is certainly
less than repairing a damaged engine. If your timing belt drives your water pump, change them both at
the same time to save labor costs down the road. Ask your Nordonia Tire service advisor
when you timing belt should be changed and get an estimate for what it will cost so you can budget for
Nordonia Tire & Service is your Northeast Ohio tire
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Goodyear Tire & Service at 10235 Northfield Road in Northfield Ohio,
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