Noisy serpentine belt tensioner - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

SLK R170 General Discussion SLK 200, SLK 230K, SLK 320, SLK32 AMG

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#1 Old 06-07-2019
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Noisy serpentine belt tensioner

A while back (injured myself so a couple of months back) my 1996 slk230 started to make an intermittent sort of scraping noise (it was while driving home from putting 4 new tyres on it - typical). The noise appeared to emanate from the area around the water pump/tensioner area.
I dropped the serpentine belt off and ran the engine and it was quiet as a mouse. As a matter of fact it was the quietest it had ever been.
When I rotate the tensioner pulley it makes a lot of noise considering it is being rotated by hand. I am assuming that when doing this it should be extremely quiet to noiseless or is this noise caused by the belt not being connected up?
So after that short novella my question is: With the serpentine belt removed should the tensioner puller assembly be noisy when rotated by hand? I am certainly hoping the answer is no as is then a cheap and easy fix.
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#2 Old 06-08-2019
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posting reply as I cannot see my question listed in the forum
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#3 Old 06-08-2019
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You need to change it, also rotate the water pump it has to be quite as well.
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#4 Old 06-08-2019
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The water pump is completely silent. Spinning the tensioner pulley with my finger is very noisy. I think the noise has been there since I have owned the car but was a lot quieter until recently.
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#5 Old 06-08-2019
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I had to change my pulley (m272 engie ), it get stuck and damaged my belt and my thermostat.
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#6 Old 06-08-2019
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Hi,

Very common, change it now, it sounds like it is at the stage of the one above, if it lets go there is all sorts of repercussions that could result in a wrecked Engine ..............

Don't risk it for a 30 tensioner and a 10 belt is my advice

HTH, Cheers Dave
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#7 Old 06-09-2019
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I can't really check out the car at the moment due to rain and weather but one more question. Does any part of the tensioner unit rotate or is it just the pulley itself? When I took the belt off (during a break in our cold horrid aussie weather) the tensioner itself felt fine. Looking at pictures of the pulley on ebay it appears that the bearing is part of the pulley unit. I am wondering if I need to replace the entire tensioner unit or just the pulley itself?
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#8 Old 06-10-2019
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Originally Posted by Aardvark66 View Post
I can't really check out the car at the moment due to rain and weather but one more question. Does any part of the tensioner unit rotate or is it just the pulley itself? When I took the belt off (during a break in our cold horrid aussie weather) the tensioner itself felt fine. Looking at pictures of the pulley on ebay it appears that the bearing is part of the pulley unit. I am wondering if I need to replace the entire tensioner unit or just the pulley itself?

If the roller is loose you might be able to tighten it but I doubt it. The bearing is shot. Just buy the complete assembly and replace both. One shot and all done.
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#9 Old 06-10-2019
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Go for the complete tensioner pulley.
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#10 Old 06-10-2019
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Yeah - better to get the whole tensioner than just the pulley. My two cents is that you get the ebay kit that includes the idler(s), tensioner and belt. It's a "while you're in there" preventive maintenance kind of thing. The idler (or idlers) surely aren't far behind, nor is the belt.

tn
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#11 Old 06-11-2019
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Hi,

Agreed, always change the whole Tensioner, it's not just the bearing that wears, it also has a pivot and rubber bushing, pulley can be running squint in extremely old hi mileage ones

Guys, just beware of EBay parts, know what brands to buy, much of EBay parts are cheapo Chinese junk, so unless you like revisiting jobs on a regular basis it is prudent to find an OEM Version, such as Gates in this example, use them all the time for belts, pulleys etc, no problems over many years.

Beware of First Line and Meyle stuff, CHINESE, yeah sure they'll give you another part under warranty that cost 'em 5 dollars to produce, but if the "whatever" is an absolute bear to change, then beware !!

HTH,

Cheers Dave
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#12 Old 06-11-2019
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Cut the old belt off, install the idler. Ten minutes.
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#13 Old 06-20-2019
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Thank you all very much. I now have a working car after 10 weeks (not laziness, illness). Rotating the pulley on my finger it sounds like it is full of gravel. I have had the car for a couple of years and I always thought it had a loud engine. It seems it was this bearing giving up the ghost.
Now all I have to do is register it again and all will be A-Ok for my test journey tomorrow.
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