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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 11-02-2013, 08:54 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 6,062
My Ride: 2001 330Ci
Tip: Reinstall Serpentine Belt

Replaced the CCV and the OFHG gasket yesterday. Took about 7 hours with the hard part being connecting the new hoses to the CCV. What a real PITA! Of course, one of the last items was the reinstallation of the serpentine belt. I've always had a rough time whenever I've had to install/reinstall that belt. Yes, the tensioner has always been fully retracted. Still a PITA.
This time I figured out an easier way:

- the mount for the idler pulley next to the alternator is offset and has a pin that slides into a slot on the OFH.
- I unscrewed the bolt just enough so that the pin was free of the slot
- I allowed the mount to rotate (CCW) so the the idler pulley was not exerting much pressure on the belt
- I fully compressed the tensioner and slide the belt into position
- I then user a pair of pliers to rotate the idler pulley mount CW so that the pin went into the slot
- I tightened the idler pulley bolt

A whole lot easier than wrestling with the belt.

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Old 11-02-2013, 12:14 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: DC
Posts: 2,243
My Ride: 2002 325i
The belts can't be any easier to deal with as they are. I've never experienced any frustration when dismounting and reinstalling, using the tensioner lugs.
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