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Old 10-22-2011, 04:09 PM   #1
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Default Belt Tensioner.

My truck has been making this odd grinding/ rattling sound (hard to describe) that I mostly hear while idling. From what I've read on this forum and other sources on the internet, I was going to pull off the tensioner assembly and check the bearings on the pulley. I believe I read on here that I could simply replace the bearings instead of the pulley or the whole assembly so that's what I was shooting for.

Also from what I've read there seems to be a lot of confusion on how to remove the tension from the belt. Some people say that there should be a square hole on the unit so that you can fit a 1/2 drive ratchet into, others say it's 3/8, others say that you use the torx bolt on the unit. Some people say you rotate counter clockwise while others say it's clockwise.

From everything I've read I've come to the conclusion that in my case (a 4.2L V6) you're supposed to use the torx bolt and rotate counter clockwise. Well, I did that and got the unique sounding squeak of a bolt getting too tight. I stopped, and tried to apply pressure clockwise; I simply got nothing then. With that being said, I'm guessing the assembly is seized and I'm going to have to replace the whole thing.

My questions are these: Am I correct in what I've said above? Does a V6 4.2L only have the one bolt holding the tensioner assembly on, or does it have three? How else do I relieve tension from the belt?
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Old 10-22-2011, 04:16 PM   #2
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Hey man I just, a few minutes ago pulled mine off. I have a 2000 V6, and it has a hex head holding the pulley on, which is LEFT HAND THREAD, YOU TURN IT CLOCKWISE TO LOOSEN. To pull the arm off, it has a #50 Torx head bolt, which is RIGHT HAND THREAD, YOU TURN IT COUNTER CLOCK WISE TO LOOSEN ( normal type bolt, lefty loosy righty tighty). Mine was a **** to break loose, made a nasty creak sound, but after that all the torque was off of it and I backed it out with my fingers. I use a long handle 3/8 drive ratchet with the handle off of my floor jack as a cheater bar. I was to the point that is was coming off period, and if I broke something it was going to be towed to the Ford dealer to fix it. I am on my second belt in three weeks, it would be great for a week or so then slowly start making a slipping noise, the tensoiner would lose it's tensoin and it would start slipping. I am headed to autozone in a few for a new tensioner arm and pulley (57.99) and a new belt. I am going to scothcbite the smooth pulleys and clean them with brake cleaner before I put on another belt, and use anti-seize compound on the bolt.
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Old 10-22-2011, 04:17 PM   #3
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to relieve the tension on the belt, put a 15 mm socket on a long ratchet or breaker bar, place it on the hex head bolt on the tensioner pulley and pull it towards you (as you should be standing on the passenger side and leaning over) then slip the belt off the closest pulley, for me it was the alternator.

Now wiggle the belt off all the pulleys and pull it up, viola it is now off!
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Old 10-22-2011, 04:47 PM   #4
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Hope these pics help
Attached Thumbnails
Belt Tensioner.-pic1.jpg   Belt Tensioner.-pic2.jpg   Belt Tensioner.-pic3.jpg  
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Old 10-22-2011, 11:34 PM   #5
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Actually that helped a lot. After all the searching I've done on this, these are the first clear pictures I've seen that show me what I'm working with. Thanks a lot!
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Old 10-22-2011, 11:39 PM   #6
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Did mine with a couple 6203 Bearings total cost about $ 8.00. While you are at it remove the seals in the bearings with a pic or nail file and pack with a good quality grease.
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Old 01-27-2012, 11:48 PM   #7
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gutterball:

You are the man!!!! Great pictures and I really needed the Torx #50 info - I did not want to buy a whole set of Torx drivers, when I only need one right now. Thanks for saving me a lot of work you already did!
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Old 01-27-2012, 11:48 PM
 
 
 
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