Tensioner deflection WTF? - PowerStrokeNation : Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 05-18-2011, 03:33 AM Thread Starter
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Tensioner deflection WTF?

'95 F250 ECLB 4x4 5-speed, 69,000-ish miles (really!). Mostly stock. Mostly unknown service history.

Just doing my usual pre-trip systems check, lights, fluids, etc, I happen to notice the belt takes a funny angle coming off the passenger-side idler. All the pulleys seem to line up, but then I notice the tensioner pulley is actually angled a bit. So I wind up the spring to de-tension the belt and slip it off, and everything "straightens out". When I swing the tensioner without any belt tension, it pivots nice and straight. But as soon as it's loaded with the belt and has to tension it, it takes on a funky angle.

Tensioner body doesn't seem to be loose on the block. The pulley turns smoothly and quietly enough. Spring feels normal when I wind it up with a wrench. But something is letting it deflect as it loads.

Here's a short video of the action. Hopefully you can see that, while I'm holding the wrench and keeping tension off the belt, everything's nice and straight. But as I release the spring, and belt tension loads up, the whole thing gets canted.

Is there something in the pivot mechanism of the tensioner that wears, and no longer allows it to track straight? BIG question is, is it safe to drive it this way, aprx. 450 miles, before I have a chance to replace it? Any recommendations on a FLAPS-available brand?

Anyway, here's the vid:

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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 05-19-2011, 01:18 AM
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Re: Tensioner deflection WTF?

replace the whole thing. would not go down the road like that. dont get stranded with a broken belt.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 05-19-2011, 01:37 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Tensioner deflection WTF?

+1; I didn't relish the thought of effing with the belt on the shoulder of the Interstate. Found a Gates 38119 at O'Reillys for just north of $80; a whole 15 minutes to R&I. Dang, I wish the tensioner in my Saturn were this easy....
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