Date registered: Mar 2005
Vehicle: '01-E320 & 02-ST2
Location: John 15:18-19
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 35 Post(s)
RE: "V Belt" as MB calls it or Serpentine Belt
There is no hard and fast rule on distance so far as I know. If you live in an extreme climate -- either hot or cold -- the belt will not last as long. My car started life in upstate NY, so it suffered through some cold winters; I bought it right after it's lease so that's how I know when it was replaced. Since our thread starter lives in Utah, where it can get pretty cold as well, you could expect shorter life. There are a few other variables as well (spilling oil on them is not good, for example) but climate is a key.
Now down in the OC where you are, Olivengco, you don't have any extremes, so you can expect your belt to last longer. Since your dealer just did a visual inspection on it, you can rest easy. Inspection is part of the regular A and B services (every 10K) so you can be assured it will be caught. If you take it in as scheduled you don't have to worry about inspecting it yourself.
FYI, the most common way to tell it's reaching the end of it's life is to turn the belt over along one of the straight runs and then bend it so it flexes the "teeth" out. This makes stress cracks (they run perpendicular to the belt teeth) more apparent. Cracks also will appear at joint where the teeth meet the main belt and run longitudinally along that joint. A few cracks here or there is not a big deal, when pieces start falling off (or you have shredding) it's time to change it.
Take care and enjoy the ride,