What does the drive belt do?
The drive belt (also known as the fan belt or serpentine belt) is a belt made of durable rubber that is located on the engine pulleys. The drive belt transfers energy to the alternator, water pump, power steering system and air conditioning system. This allows all of these parts to work properly. Most cars have one or two drive belts. If there is only one, it is generally referred to as a serpentine belt.
Although drive belts are designed to be durable, they may eventually wear and snap. When this happens, all of the components listed above will stop working. When this happens, your cooling system will not work. This can lead to your engine overheating if you are not careful. Fortunately, replacing the drive belt is usually a simple, straightforward process. Your trusted mechanics should advise when your car is being serviced if you need a drive belt replacement .
How to tell if your drive belt has snapped:
Since the drive belt controls so many different functions, it will usually be quite obvious when it snaps. Below are some of the most common symptoms to look out for:
- Battery light on the dash – When the drive belt breaks, your cars alternator will stop charging your cars battery, which will cause a battery light to come on the dash and possibly the Check Engine Light (in late model vehicles)
- Your car is difficult to steer – When a drive belt snaps, one of the first things to stop working is the power steering system. This means that turning your steering wheel will require a lot more force and can be very dangerous.
- Your engine is overheating – When the drive belt snaps, the water pump can stop working. This will lead to higher engine temperatures. As you continue to drive, the engine temperature will rise. This can lead to serious engine damage. For this reason, we recommend pulling over as soon as you can and putting your vehicle onto a car tow truck to your trusted local garage to repair. This will be far cheaper than trying to drive to the nearest garage and overheating / damaging your cars engine further.
- The air conditioning is not working – Since the drive belt powers your air conditioning system, it will immediately stop working when the belt snaps.
- The drive belt appears to be ripped, frayed or damaged – The best way to determine if your drive belt is snapped is by examining it yourself or ask your trusted local garage to check it for you. Look for a black rubber belt near the alternator and water pump. If you notice visible tearing or damage to the belt, it will need to be replaced.
Is it safe to drive with a snapped drive belt?
Although your car may still run with a snapped drive belt, we strongly recommend that you avoid driving. There are a few reasons why driving with a snapped drive belt is a bad idea. Firstly, your power steering system won’t work. This can make it difficult for you to turn quickly, especially if you are used to driving with power steering. Secondly, your cooling system will not work correctly. This can lead to engine damage, resulting in an expensive engine repair or replacement being necessary.
The best thing to do is to pull over as soon as possible and arrange for the towing of your vehicle. This will keep your engine safe from overheating.
Drive Belt Replacement Service in Hamilton
Have you experienced a snapped drive belt? If so, you’ve come to the right place! At Grimmer Motors, we can help you get your drive belt fixed in no time. This will prevent your engine from overheating when you drive. Drive belt replacements are usually fast, lower-cost jobs, meaning we can give you the best value repair possible.
For drive belt/serpentine belt replacement services in Hamilton, contact Grimmer Motors today!