Newer Honda models are equipped with a serpentine belt, which is also known as a multi-vee, poly-v, or a multi-rib belt. Named for the way the belt “snakes” around the various pulleys, it’s used to drive different components of the engine including the alternator, power steering pump, water pump, air conditioning compressor, and air pump. It’s a single belt instead of multiple belts operating different jobs, so the serpentine belt is more efficient and cost effective and simpler to install when the time comes to replace it.

When to Replace?

Serpentine Belts usually last around five years or up to 100,000 miles. If obvious signs of wear are visible on the belt, then it should be replaced immediately. But most of the time, even excessive damage is difficult to see just by taking a look under the hood. Cars.com explains that the belts are made with a synthetic rubber called EPDM and “are less likely to crack or lose chunks of rubber than other types.” Only a trained technician will be able to to measure the depths of the grooves on the underside of the belt to determine its degree of wear and damage. If the grooves have worn down too much, the belt will slip around the pulleys and operate the engine components sporadically or at reduced power and efficiency. Drivers should replace their serpentine belts:

  • After five years or 100,000 miles
  • If there are visible signs of wear
  • If the grooves on the underside of the belt have worn down
Mechanic charging car battery
Mechanic Working on Computer

Adverse Effects of Wear

There are some signs to look out for when your serpentine belts is getting worn down and not operating as it should. The engine cooling might be affected and cause overheating, the battery might not be able to charge, and there could be issues with the power steering and air conditioning. Another sign that your serpentine belt needs to be replaced is a high-pitched or whistling sound when you start the engine or accelerate on the road.

Honda Civic Hatchback Steering Wheel
2018 Honda Accord Dual Zone Climate Control

Replacing and Maintenance

If you think you may be experiencing issues with your serpentine belt or it’s time to have it replaced, your nearest Metro Milwaukee Honda dealer is here to help. Our trained technician can replace parts and provide service and maintenance to your Honda to keep it running at its best.