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Subject: "Do not use STP belt dressing!" Archived thread - Read only
 
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DP
Charter Member
161 posts
May-26-04, 01:50 PM (EST)
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"Do not use STP belt dressing!"
 
   Since it's starting to get hot here, I've been using the a/c a lot more. My 164 squeals like a mofo now. So yesterday thinking it was the alternator belt, I went and bought some stp belt dressing and sprayed my alternator belt. 2 blocks down the road and my serpentine belt breaks! After talking to Wes he concluded that the stp belt dressing really did my belt in. So I don't know if my belt slipping all week led to the weaking of my belt or not, but I'm not using the belt dressing anymore.

Luckily my car didn't overheat when the belt snapped!

Danny
Dallas, Texas
91 164l Blue
83 gtv6 3.0
90 Honda Civic


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Do not use STP belt dressing!, DP, 01:50 PM, May-26-04, (0)  
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mjkhpns
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4209 posts
May-26-04, 06:33 PM (EST)
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1. "RE: Do not use STP belt dressing!"
In response to message #0
 
   Danny a serpentine belt slipping all week not a good sign no wonder it snapped. Just finished reviving Stephen's S after I found serpentine belt remains in with timing belt under front cover. You are lucky yours didn't do that same trick.

Even using a new 425K7 belt I had to readjust it 3 times to stop it from squeeling when a/c engaged. It keep stretching so I hope new belt will settle in and be quiet. I plan to recheck belt tension after we get plates on it and it state inspected.

I don't much care for belt dressing either as I believe in finding problem of why belt sounding off.

Ciao, Alfisto Steve
Virginia Beach, VA

91 White 164B Originale
91 Black 164L Alfa Rescue Society project

A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine


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c m smith
Charter Member
913 posts
May-27-04, 00:09 AM (EST)
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2. "RE: Do not use STP belt dressing!"
In response to message #1
 
   Belt dressing might have lubed the belt enough to make the slippage worse and speed the demise of the belt. However, the AC compressor bearing failure is so common that is likely your problem. The pulley/clutch assembly bearing tends to fail, seize and take out the belt and compressor!

Michael Smith
91 164L White
150,000km original owner


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DP
Charter Member
161 posts
May-28-04, 10:15 AM (EST)
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3. "RE: Do not use STP belt dressing!"
In response to message #2
 
   I'm thinking it's not my a/c compressor because I can spin it pretty freely with my hand. The belt didn't start slipping until I turned on my a/c. Let me know if my assumption is wrong.

I think Sandro nailed it in another post. I think the serpentine belt rubbed against the alternator belt causing it to break.

I'm cleaning the pulleys with carb. cleaner this weekend and am going for a smaller toothed serpentine belt. Do you all have a good technique in tensioning the belt without killing the water pump bearings? My water pump went out after 12k miles last time.

Danny
Dallas, Texas
91 164l Blue
83 gtv6 3.0
90 Honda Civic


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c m smith
Charter Member
913 posts
May-28-04, 09:41 PM (EST)
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4. "RE: Do not use STP belt dressing!"
In response to message #3
 
   The compressor is not connected to the pulley unless the engine is running and the electro magnetic clutch is engaged. How do you think you spun the compressor by hand?

The failure mode of the pulley bearing occurs when the clucth is energized which loads the bearing causing the belt to overload and squeal on the pulleys. If you took out a water pump then likely the belt was overtensioned and this would also overload that pulley bearing on the AC clutch. I had a similar problem.

Tensioning these drive belts is quite tricky. High tension is required but not too high. Alfa uses a special tool and deflection gauge to set the tension, officially!

Squealing belts is often due to insufficient tension, but I have known that excess tension can cause squeal also.

The serpentine belt is grooved not toothed is it not?

Michael Smith
91 164L White
150,000km original owner


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tiefenback
Charter Member
636 posts
Jun-09-04, 04:05 PM (EST)
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5. "RE: Do not use STP belt dressing!"
In response to message #4
 
   Wouldn't one want to clean any oil leakage from the pulleys and serpentine belt? I have a suspicion that a little oil is the culprit in much of this squeaky serpentine belt discussion. Of course, the complaints are made in the summertime, and maybe the elevated temps around the serpentine belt make it run warmer and expand a bit. My wife's 164L is squealing now, and it didn't all winter even when the AC was engaged. Similarly for the daughter's 164L: she reports it is starting to squeal intermittently.

I have been considering spraying the belt area and pulleys with brake cleaner and then maybe even a bit of belt dressing (Oh, the shame of it!).

Michael


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mjkhpns
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4209 posts
Jun-09-04, 04:15 PM (EST)
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6. "RE: Do not use STP belt dressing!"
In response to message #5
 
   Michael retension the new belt we put on daughter's 93L and get new one to go with preplanned belt maintenance on your wife's 91L REAL SOON. Get a new serpentine belt from Autozone, Pep Boys or NAPA to go along with TB scheduled change parts already laid in.

Ciao, Alfisto Steve
Virginia Beach, VA

91 White 164B Originale
91 Black 164L Alfa Rescue Society project

A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine


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Bob C
Charter Member
1386 posts
Jun-09-04, 10:05 PM (EST)
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7. "RE: Do not use STP belt dressing!"
In response to message #6
 
   I had tried belt dressing before but IMHO they are only good for silencing the belt for 30 seconds or so. Fix a slipping belt by re-tensioning it or by replacing the belt ASAP or it will just get worst - real fast! If the belt or pulley is oily or dirty, I suggest use some mild degreaser solution and then hose it off with water. Other solvents (carb cleaner, brake cleaner, ... etc.) might attack the rubber compound of the belt!

Bob C


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c m smith
Charter Member
913 posts
Jun-11-04, 11:36 PM (EST)
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8. "RE: Do not use STP belt dressing!"
In response to message #5
 
   AC compressor won't engage in winter if temp drops below about 5 degrees C (40 F). Even if Auto or AC is selected. There's an anti frost switch to prevent this.

Michael Smith
91 164L White
150,000km original owner


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