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91 camry- how to remove alternator drive belt?


The swap out seems straightforward enough- disconnect the battery, be gentle with the alt plugs, etc., but how do I get the belt off? The belt runs from the alt pulley to the a/c compressor to a third pulley and back to the alternator.

The 3rd pulley is probably the tensioner pulley. There is a mechanism to tighten/loosen belt on that pulley. Loosen the center bolt, which locks the pulley in place, then find the tensioner bolt and loosening that should relieve the tension on the belt.

If you look down at the alternator, you’ll see the head of bolt pointing up. That’s the jack bolt. If you look down in front of the bracket for the jack bolt, you’ll see the head of another bolt. That’s the lock bolt. So first loosen the pivot bolt for the alternator bracket, loosen the lock bolt, and then turn the jack bolt to release the tension for the alternator belt.


There’s a 1/2" gap in front of that pulley, because of the wheel well… I can’t fit a ratchet in there.

I think Tester is right. I was thinking a 3rd pulley in addition to the crank pulley would be a tensioner. But if those are the only 3 things on that belt then that 3rd pulley is the crank pulley and you aren’t going to mess with that. The tension is adjusted at the alternator.

The pivot bolt is the big 14mm one in the back, right? I’m going to need a long bar to loosen that, it’s on super tight.

Should I totally remove the lock bolt, so that way the alternator can pivot on the pivot bolt?

All the bolts only need to be loosend. No bolts need to be removed.

And by the way, if the alternator doesn’t drop as you turn the jack bolt, Use two hammers. Place the handle of one hammer on top of the alternator, and hit the head of that hammer with the other hammer to force the alternator down.