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Discussion Starter #1
As the title suggests, the tensioner pulley bolt is broken. Not sure if the mechanics done this but it is done now. Car was booked in today to have the water pump and drive belt replaced. When my partner went to check on the car (we hadn't heard from them all day and I knew I was gonna get pissy at them) they advised that this bolt was broken, and that they 'forgot' to call us and advise of this. To me that indicates they're guilty, at the very least grossly incompetent. My partner says I should give them the benefit of the doubt. Needless to say I got the car out of there quick smart without paying anything. I cannot prove whether they broke the bolt or if it was an old break. It 'looks' like an old break, but i'm aware this could be deliberately discolored to make it look like an old break. Anyway. Is this going to be an easy job for the dealership? I just don't trust mechanics and I knew something was going to go wrong.

Unfortunately I didn't inspect this bolt before taking it to the mechanic. What will be involved? Just drill out the old bolt and replace the complete tensioner? We need the car asap and from where I stand I can only hope the dealership is more competent, albeit a LOT more expensive.
 

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That isn't a bolt. Rather it a 19mm hex nut attached to the tensioner. Breaking them off is fairly common for those who don't know how to properly replace the drive belt and pull past the point of tension release.

You will need to replace the belt tensioner. The only purpose for that nut is too loosen the tensioner for belt removal. Since your belt looks toast anyway, I would cut the belt, replace the tensioner, replace the water pump, and install the new belt. Then bleed to coolant obviously.

Here is a great video for tensioner replacement:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfSJvN-CE2E

Obviously just forget the part where they remove the belt as you will cut. I would also remove the entire dog bone bracket from the engine.

Hope that helps.
 

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Pictures of the broken belt tensioner
Like hardtop said, that isn't actually a bolt, and there isn't anything you can drill and replace. I attached a pic of what the tensioner looks like, with an arrow pointing to the broken section. That piece, as you can see, looks like a nut, but, is actually where you put a wrench to remove and replace the belt. Any competent shop can easily replace it, and unless your only other option is the dealer, i would see what other places are around, it might be less expensive that way, and, if you can do it yourself, would be even cheaper.

 

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Discussion Starter #5
Cheers. So do I need the genuine part for this (around $300) or the cheap one ($100) or the intermediate Dayco tensioner about $180?
 

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Cheers. So do I need the genuine part for this (around $300) or the cheap one ($100) or the intermediate Dayco tensioner about $180?
That is a question i would ask guys like Hardtop, or CorollaCharlie, and see what they recommend. In my limited Toyota experience though, the cheaper the part, the faster it will cause issues down the road. This is one where the guys who have the most experience with these cars would be the best ones to answer.
 

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Cheers. So do I need the genuine part for this (around $300) or the cheap one ($100) or the intermediate Dayco tensioner about $180?
OEM parts tend to be the best choice, but... my 2 cents, not that it is right, is that if you are doing the work, and it is not a big job, you could blow through 3 of the cheaper ones and be at the same price. Your immediate cash flow is reduced, you'll get some life out of the less expensive one (1 year, 2 years, 3 months...??) and if it goes South you just replace it. Now, on this I don't know what the failure mode is and what that results in. In other words, I'd rather not put a cheap part in that will fail while at speed and cause the engine to stop working, stranding me on the side of the road. That's not worth the immediate savings. But if the part will fail in less dramatic fashion, meh, I go for aftermarket generally. But I do stay away from the cheapest aftermarket, as I tend to think they will be more problematic (I've seen lower ball joints for my daughter's CR-V that were less than $20, and I was afraid to even look at those on the screen too long!) Did you check toyotaonlineparts.com or the site vendor here for a better OEM price?
 

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Cheers. So do I need the genuine part for this (around $300) or the cheap one ($100) or the intermediate Dayco tensioner about $180?
Australian exchange rates trip me out.

I would run the Dayco or a Gates if you can find it. Rockauto has the Gates tensioner shipped to Australia for $156 AUS with 5% discount code.

http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/moreinfo.php?pk=679047&cc=1434115&jnid=487&jpid=0

Did you already buy the water pump? If not, since shipping is so high, buy the Aisin pump and drive belt all from Rockauto.

A Goodyear Gatorback Belt, Gates Tensioner, and Aisin Pump are $254.22 shipped to your location. All you would need is coolant and some FIPG.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
OEM parts tend to be the best choice
Agreed. I have decided to do the job myself, and the money saved will go toward the OEM tensioner. Having said that, I am a little fearful, not of the job itself, but given my luck lately with our Camrys, I can just envisage me breaking off one of the 4 12 mm water pump pulley bolts. The tensioner job looks easier than the water pump job!

Just read through the DIY water pump and belt replacement thread on here from finish to end and picked up a few tips n tricks, hopefully it all runs smoothly (does it ever though?).

So many different Permatex RTV's to choose from though, which one is right for this job? (Toyota wanted $40 for a smallish tube of their black FIPG maker....)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Australian exchange rates trip me out.
Tell me about it! Don't they understand more people would buy their parts though if they were more 'reasonable'! Having said that there is a fair difference between different dealers too.

Did you already buy the water pump?
Yeah got the OEM water pump a few weeks back (made in Thailand, wtf?!)

Also have the Bando belt here for the job too, as well as the Toyota red LLC and the distilled water.
 

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I would not spend double the money on an OEM tensioner. The Gates parts are VERY high quality and I would run it without hesitation.
 

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UPDATE: work was all completed now. Ended up getting the Toyota tensioner (made in Slovakia!) for $330. The Gates one retail was $289 (all $AUD). So what was meant to be a $400 job turned into an $880 job :facepalm:.

So to summarise got new drive belt (Bando) Toyota water pump, and Toyota belt tensioner. They also re-adjusted the hand/park brake which had no grab what soever. Cooling system filled with Toyota Red LLC and distilled water.
 

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UPDATE: work was all completed now. Ended up getting the Toyota tensioner (made in Slovakia!) for $330. The Gates one retail was $289 (all $AUD). So what was meant to be a $400 job turned into an $880 job :facepalm:.

So to summarise got new drive belt (Bando) Toyota water pump, and Toyota belt tensioner. They also re-adjusted the hand/park brake which had no grab what soever. Cooling system filled with Toyota Red LLC and distilled water.
Next time use RockAuto and do it yourself.
 

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Sorry for reviving this old post.

Yesterday I replaced my water pump (car was overheating), alternator and belt (not yet). Well while trying to install the belt, the 19 mm tension bolt (dummy bolt) broke on me. I've already ordered a new belt tensioner.

Yet until that arrives, is there anything else I can do in order to relieve tension and install the new belt?
 

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Sorry for reviving this old post.

Yesterday I replaced my water pump (car was overheating), alternator and belt (not yet). Well while trying to install the belt, the 19 mm tension bolt (dummy bolt) broke on me. I've already ordered a new belt tensioner.

Yet until that arrives, is there anything else I can do in order to relieve tension and install the new belt?
Cut the belt (it will not be scary, I did it on mine) then after A LOT of sturggling remove the tensioner. There will be one bolt that is too long so you will have to lift or lower the engine. Make sure to remove the alternator to make more space. My solution to the reinstall is a slightly smalller bolt. The original bolt is about 85mm long so I replaced it with either a 75mm or a 70mm. Just make sure it is a strong bolt.
 

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Cut the belt (it will not be scary, I did it on mine) then after A LOT of sturggling remove the tensioner. There will be one bolt that is too long so you will have to lift or lower the engine. Make sure to remove the alternator to make more space. My solution to the reinstall is a slightly smalller bolt. The original bolt is about 85mm long so I replaced it with either a 75mm or a 70mm. Just make sure it is a strong bolt.
Well good thing is I was in the process of installing the new belt. So I was basically 90% finished when this occurred. So the belt is already off, i was just hoping there was some sort of "mickey mouse" way to being able to install the belt. lol.

BTW - Your right about the lifting (or lowering) of the engine...everything I've seen/read indicates that's a necessary step.
 

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Well good thing is I was in the process of installing the new belt. So I was basically 90% finished when this occurred. So the belt is already off, i was just hoping there was some sort of "mickey mouse" way to being able to install the belt. lol.

BTW - Your right about the lifting (or lowering) of the engine...everything I've seen/read indicates that's a necessary step.
Saw that we're in the same situation here @CobraKai
I'm trying to figure out the best way to lift my engine enough to give that bolt clearance over the frame. I've already removed the "dog bone" mount. But even with the wood block on my jack, I can't seem to lift the engine enough. Saw somewhere that there may be an additional mount I have to remove. Any solutions?
 

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Sorry for reviving this old post.

Yesterday I replaced my water pump (car was overheating), alternator and belt (not yet). Well while trying to install the belt, the 19 mm tension bolt (dummy bolt) broke on me. I've already ordered a new belt tensioner.

Yet until that arrives, is there anything else I can do in order to relieve tension and install the new belt?
just press down on it with a pry bar and have someone help slide the belt on. it's just a handle. mine is still broken
 

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just press down on it with a pry bar and have someone help slide the belt on. it's just a handle. mine is still broken
Thanks for the suggestion...

I ended up purchasing belt tensioner assembly via Amazon. I paid less than $31 shipped. Plus my pops surprised me by taking the car to a shop for the installation. The charge for the installation - $65. So in all, I ended up paying less than $100 and I learned a valuable lesson. lol
 
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