If it is time to replace the belts on your 5th generation GTO, you came to the right place. The owners manual recommends to change the belts every 150,000 miles. I personally think this is way too long. Dayco recommends inspecting your drive belts at 60,000 miles, and replacing worn belts at 90,000 miles. Below is an excerpt taken right from the Dayco Belt Training write up:
“Over the past 25 years, serpentine belts have changed considerably. 25 years ago
vehicles had multiple serpentine belts that only had up to 4 points of contact. Today,
serpentine belts can have over 10 points of contact, creating very complicated drive
systems. These complicated drives offer many more opportunities for issues such as
pulley misalignment, resulting in unwanted noise. Today’s belts are also made to last
longer than their predecessors of 25 years ago. Years ago, belts were
made with a Neoprene rubber compound that lasted 50-80,000 miles
before failure or replacement. Today’s serpentine belts are made with an
EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) compound and should be
inspected for wear starting at 60,000 miles and worn components should
be replaced at 90,000 miles.”
Follow the below steps to change your vehicles drive belt:
- Under the hood look for the serpentine belt tensioner, marked with a red arrow below:
- Remove the plastic radiator shroud. Should be 4 push pin plastic body fasteners holding it in place, as well as a metal clip at the center of the shroud, underneath the plastic. Pull gently making sure to not break or crack the plastic shroud or the clip that hold it in place.
- You will need a 15mm socket and a breaker bar or long handle ratchet. Place the socket on the bolt head and turn it to the right/clockwise to move the pulley tensioner. With the tensioner turned, this will release the pressure on the belt and you will be able to easily slide the belt off of the pulley. Release the tensioner, and completely remove the belt.
- Begin installing the new drive belt using the diagram below. Route the belt in a way that the only pulley left is the belt tensioner you used to release the old belt.
Note: If you are also replacing your air conditioning belt, remove and replace that belt before installing the new drive belt. Same concept applies. Use the 15mm socket on the tensioner and turn clockwise. Release the belt. Install the new A/C Belt first, before installing the drive belt. The air conditioning belt sits behind the drive belt on the harmonic balancer, so it must be installed before installing the drive belt.
- Again using the 15mm socket, turn the belt tensioner clockwise and slide the new belt over the pulley. Release the tensioner and the new belt should be in place and tight.
- Reinstall the plastic radiator shroud. Line up the metal clip on the underside of the shroud and gently snap into place. Install the 4 plastic push pins theat hold the radiator shroud in place. Congratulations, you changed your belts!