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7th Gen new aux belt & Alternator DIY

TheHole

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Here is the DIY to show How to remove the old (Long) Aux belt and replace it with the newer 'short' version which reduces load on the alternator bearings... I have also removed and replaced my alternator with another unit.

My car USED to sound like this.. this is the sound of the clutch / pulley bearking going.
Click here.
A better quality video is here: Here

Now as a word of advice. Do this mod BEFORE you get alternator problems. its cheaper and easier just to replace the aux belt then have to do all the other things that require an alternator replacement!

Nowi would like to say thank you to:
Salim.. who spent the time to write this Alternator change thread: Here
and
jmcg who also has spent the time to write up the HOW TO replace the alternator Clutch Pulley thread: Here

To be honest, the above two threads made this job very easy.. on a scale of 1-5 (5 being Hardest and 1 being easy) i would say this is a 2/3.
its not 'hard', you just need to take your time and make sure things are done properly.

Now to get on to the nitty gritty bits.

tools you may / will need:
10,14,19 & 12mm sockets / spanners
lots of extension bars for your socket set
a 14mm 'swan neck' or 'offset spanner' now i made one of these by grinding down a halfords pro 14mm socket and welding a 4x12mm x 450mm bar on the end ( will get a picture up) this tool i used to release the tension on the aux belt.
jack & 2x axle stands


Now lets move on to the job.

this is the belt length difference :



now jack up the front of the car: ( i used the central jacking point)

and secure with the 2 x axle stands... i put these under the main front suspension bush/ chassis joint as it is very strong around here


Next get your tool of choice to slacken the aux belt tensioner and attach to the nut (the wheel below the 'golden' colour idler puller


now try and get the tool as far forward as you can as you will be pulling back towards the front of the car. picture below shows how far i was able to get back


Pull towards you like so:


and quickly get the belt off the top pump, once the belt is off the top pulley. release tension on the auto tensioner.. it will go forward quite a long way but this is fine.
 

TheHole

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spend a few minutes pulling at the old belt and it should finally come off:


Now lets get rid of that pointless idler pulley!


A hint with the above.. it will be mighty tough to get this moving, use an extension bar or such to make light work of it. Once its free, swap to an open ended spanner and undo it the rest of the way.
DONT use a rachet spanner as i did as you cant fully wind the bolt out if you do!

once its nearly off take care not to drop the 'bits'



Now if your just replacing the belt then undo your driver side wheel and partly remove the undertray that comes und and by the main crank pulley.
feed the new belt down from the top observing the new routing


My advice here is feed the belt over the alternator pulley and down on to the pulley to the left. then get under neath and feel just above the crank pulley and the belt should be there.
pull the belt down and around the bottom two pulleys. this should leave you with just the belt tensioner and the very top pulley left without the belt. Now feed the belt around the tensioner to leave a 'loop' of belt for the top pulley ONLY.
put your tool back on the tensioner and pull forwards to give you the slack you need to hook it around the top pulley.
BEFORE you release tension, check the belt it correctly on all the pulleys!!!

If your changing your alternator aswell then look at Salim's thread Here

to add to Salims thread / info..
you need to frome the fan guard there is no way about it! i tried!. remove the fan guard and the top tank for the cooling fluid. move this tank as far right as possible as this is the ONLY way to get the alternator out.
With the fan guard removed undo the bottom two bolts first, then undo the top two

if you lose track of which bolt goes where, its fairly easy. 2 x bolts are identical in length, these are the two bolts which go on the PULLEY SIDE. 1x bolt is slightly shorter and this goes on the lower side at the back of the alternator, and the really short one goes on the top right.
 

TheHole

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Undo all the gubbins from the back of the alternator

and now the difficult bit.. push the pipe for the AC forward towards the engine and slowly slide the AC unit towards the front Rad and then slide it towards the center on the car (where the expansion tank is/ was).
once the alternator is on the right hand side of that AC pipe it should just lift out.

Fit the new alternator in the same way ( sorry i didnt take pics but it was tight in there and i had no helpers to take pictures)

re attach all the bits and peices in the same way you removed them making sure to check everything is tight.


now to replace the belt
undo your driver side wheel and partly remove the undertray that comes up and by the main crank pulley.
feed the new belt down from the top observing the new routing


My advice here is feed the belt over the alternator pulley and down on to the pulley to the left. then get under neath and feel just above the crank pulley and the belt should be there.
pull the belt down and around the bottom two pulleys. this should leave you with just the belt tensioner and the very top pulley left without the belt. Now feed the belt around the tensioner to leave a 'loop' of belt for the top pulley ONLY.
put your tool back on the tensioner

and pull forwards to give you the slack you need to hook it around the top pulley.

BEFORE you release tension, check the belt it correctly on all the pulleys!!!

once your happy, slowly release the tensioner on to the belt:


re connect the battery and start your car up to check it all works!


Again, i cannot stress that if you have not done this 'MOD' yet you NEED to do it before you alternator gives up the ghost.

for the price of £45 for the belt its really a no brainer.. as a used alternator is around £100.

I hope that this will be of some use to somebody :)

Adam
 

jmcgahern

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Nice write up. Was your old alternator totally goosed? If not, it may be worth changing the bearings and pulley yourself to see if you can get a few quid off ebay?
 

TheHole

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Jmcg... my alternator pulley / clutch is goosed. It is completely locked which is why it was making such a racquet!
 

Salim

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Excellent work mate and great write, glad it went smoothly and no more noise!
 

Rroni

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A big Thank you SALIM I have changed my belt and alternator for 2 hours thanks again, just to let you know guys I bought the belt in JapParts for £22 les than half price from Honda dealers.
 

simontown

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New belt and reconditioned alternator fitted today.....HH supplied both! Just wished I'd spotted the fix before I fried the old alternator!
 

Locrian

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The belt on my 2.2 cdti was squealing so I had it replaced at a honda dealer and I believe they did the revision with the shorter belt. They tell me that the alternator bearings are very noisy, which does seem to be the case. The price for a new alternator was £450 all in and they tell me that the bearings can't be changed. I haven't got £450 so I spoke to another honda dealer who tell me that the bearings can be changed, gave me a price for the front/rear bearings (internal) and helpfully gave me the labour time given for their mechs to do it.
I then spoke to a local indy garage who said he wouldn't even bother taking apart the alternator on his own car, not least because I may be throwing good money after bad to replace other internal parts that are old/worn out. They quoted me £230 for a new alternator + fitting (seems too cheap?). So I phoned around a few auto spares shops and prices range between £330 - £400 for a new alternator. However, one guy said they actually keep a couple of clutch/overrun pulleys on the shelf because of the regularity of this issue, and suggested taking it somewhere to diagnose whether its a knackered alternator or whether its just a case of replacing the clutch pulley.

I'm a bit of a spoon with all this and I don't know who/what to believe any more. All I know is that I'm not going to be spending £450 on this. Any advice from you learned fellows would be most welcome.
 

Salim

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They only sell the shorter belt now.

My experience is the clutch pulley starts to fail first followed by the front bearing if left too long. it's wise to diagnose the problem first.
 

Locrian

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Thanks for the response. I put a voltmeter across the battery, idling and under load (main beam on,) and also onto the alternator terminal itself - it's not charging the battery or giving out anything at all apparently, other than making a noise. I couldn't be much further away from being an expert but I'm thinking it's dead :( .

It turns out there's a place not too far from me that might be able to either fix mine or supply another alternator but they were closed by the time I found out about them, so I'll try again on monday and hope they can come up with a more sensible price than I've found so far.
In the event that they turn out to be a dead end, if anyone has a replacement for a Denso 104210-3911 unit please feel free to let me know.
 

Dave_G

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If the alternator is not putting anything out, have you been having starting issues or problems with a flat battery? If you haven't then I would guess your alternator is working and is just noisy.
 

Locrian

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Dave G said:
If the alternator is not putting anything out, have you been having starting issues or problems with a flat battery? If you haven't then I would guess your alternator is working and is just noisy.
Thanks pal, both. Initially I got a slipping belt and then bearing noise, over a very short space of time (couple of days.) I didn't actually realise the bearings were rattling if I'm honest and I had a new belt fitted. Honda, although they told me the bearings were quite noisy, didn't diagnose that it was dead (I've ***umed that they didn't test it.) Over the space of a 40 mile journey the battery was flat, so when I got back I tested/charged the battery and decided to have a go with my meter. The battery was fine but alas the alty was stone dead. I'd actually ordered ordered a new battery in the mean time, which I'll probably be sticking in the classifieds here at some point. If anyone close enough to collect needs one, feel free to let me know and I'll hurry up with it.

I bought a used unit for 100 quid inc delivery off ebay and had it properly tested before installing it using Salim's excellent guide. Sorted, thank you.
 

Dave_G

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Glad you got it sorted. I would hold on to your new battery for a couple of weeks just in case the old alternator has managed to kill off your old battery too as modern batteries don't really like being allowed to go fully flat.
 

Locrian

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I don't have the car any more mate, I part chopped it in now - but good advice ta. New battery is definitely surplus to requirements.
 

geoffdragon

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Hi there, Is this definitely the reference number for the shorter belt ?
My car has had the extra roller removed, I presume by Honda as the car has a full Honda history, and I want to get a spare belt to carry in the boot.
My current belt shows the wear maker in the middle of the indicator.
I wonder if you could confirm thats the same using this belt.
Many thanks,
Geoff
 

Zook31

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Hi Geoff
This is correct part number for Gates drive belt I just fitted it and removed idler as well car seems to run better as well.
hope this helps.. ;)
 

rhyeung

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Hi, I'm going go try and replace my old long belt soon, just seeking the 14mm long reach round spanner, so, what is the length is need, most of the length on sale from eBay are around 260-306mm is that enough?
 

iar1980

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mikdys

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Great thread and thanks for all this info'

I'm in the middle of an alternator change (just taken the old one off to exchange with Alternatorman) but I can't shift the tensioner bolt (which is what I'm going to need to do to fit the new alternator). I have a spanner that I can use to get a lot of torque on it (I can slip a jack handle over the end of the spanner) but I'm worried something is just going to snap if I do this.

Does the tensioner bolt head need some "serious welly" to shift it - it didn't appear to move when I unbolted the alternator so I suspect the adjuster may be seized - if it is I'm going to try to force the new alternator on with the old belt and tensioner in the same position - I need to be using the car and can't afford for it to be off the road more than this week - if I snap the tensioner then it's all going to get pretty involved and I don't want to go here.

Any ideas?
 

mikdys

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OK - so got it sorted in the end - answer was a "long 14mm spanner with 'adjustable crank and ratchet'". Borrowed one from the local MOT centre who kindly lent me the tool free of charge. They use this tool especially for these tensioners (12mm at one end and 14mm - fits the Accord - at the other). Easy job with this tool and the adjuster hadn't seized it just needs a lot of leverage and a lot of movement.

The tool I was lent was made by Wurth, and I estimate was 35cm long, but I have been unable to find it online. The design of the tool was almost identical to the largest one of the set linked to here:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/EXTRA-LONG-METRIC-DOUBLE-BOX-FLEX-Reversible-ratchet-wrench-set-MOUNTAIN-/351372793395

A tool like this is the "missing part" of this job and is essential I think (my "jack handle idea" didn't work because of working in small space, the movement inside the jack handle and the extreme amount of movement required).
 

Blong91

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Does the 2.4 need the shortened belt? Anyone got a link to the belt I need?
 
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