M103 belt tensioner ramp? - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-30-2014, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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M103 belt tensioner ramp?

Hi, I just replaced my serpentine belt on my 91 300te wagon, everything runs pretty well until I noticed the belt is a little loose compare to yesterday. I'm worried that the tensioner is not working properly.

The pointer past the left marker(facing the car) on the tensioner. I also recall that I can't move the pointer much during the belt change, the pointer stayed close to the left marker and didn't go to the right marker on the ramp even when the belt is slacked.

Is the tensioner dead?

Thanks for your help.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-30-2014, 02:36 PM
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M103 belt tensioner

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Originally Posted by highpeak View Post
Hi, I just replaced my serpentine belt on my 91 300te wagon, everything runs pretty well until I noticed the belt is a little loose compare to yesterday. I'm worried that the tensioner is not working properly.

The pointer past the left marker(facing the car) on the tensioner. I also recall that I can't move the pointer much during the belt change, the pointer stayed close to the left marker and didn't go to the right marker on the ramp even when the belt is slacked.

Is the tensioner dead?

Thanks for your help.
I bought the LITENS brand tensioner and idler pulley from advanced auto parts , the tensioner is made in Germany and looks OEM to me ( see my pictures on a old post ) about $100 less than parts.com but not a URO part . I am happy with it .

91 300E 91 300CE 93 400E 2000 BMW K1200RS
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-30-2014, 03:05 PM
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indeed, that sounds like a dead tensioner... I assume you loosened the main bolt through the tensioner before turning the tension adjuster screw?

if you remove the tensioner entirely, and examine it, the flats which the adjuster arm work against should be centered on the pulley, like the picture on the right... the one on the left, you can see the flats are aimed off to the right, thats bad.

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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-30-2014, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I did loose the main bolt before adjust the tensioner. I replaced it 8 month ago, its a URO brand. Looks like I need to get a Dayco or Litens tensioner.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-30-2014, 09:59 PM
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Please replace that URO tensioner asap, URO is like the plague for our cars. Failures happen very very early due to the bad quality, if you search this forum all you will see is negative comments. Nothing good ever comes from URO.

Most of us wonder how they are still in business.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 07:33 AM
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Originally Posted by highpeak View Post
Thanks. I did loose the main bolt before adjust the tensioner. I replaced it 8 month ago, its a URO brand. Looks like I need to get a Dayco or Litens tensioner.
Gates also has a made in Germany tensioner. It had an INA pulley on it. Might be easier to find.
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-03-2014, 04:01 PM
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Hi, I'm in the process of replacing my power steering pump. I am to the point of loosening the 19mm tensioner "clamping bolt" but the thing won't budge. I'm using a half inch drive rachet with the 19mm socket so I do have some leverage. I have read so much here about tensioner problems, I don't want to screw it up. Should I use my 2 foot breaker bar and lean into it, or am I going to mess it up? I've had two tensioners replaced (by an experienced Mercedes mechanic) in the last three years so I don't want to pay for another one.

Last edited by xswg; 06-03-2014 at 04:05 PM. Reason: to add that previous 2 tensioners were not installed by me.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-03-2014, 06:15 PM
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2 in 3 years suggests they were low grade aftermarket. the original mercedes ones last 10-20 years.

I dont recall that bolt being that hard to remove on mine, I think I just used my normal 3/8" ratchet set, with 6-point sockets.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-04-2014, 05:45 AM
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Just had the alternator replaced several months ago and they left the belt with several inches of play. The power steering was already making a 'bad bearing' noise and nothing else seemed newly wrong so I didn't go back to the mechanic to have the belt tightened. This too-tight bolt makes me wonder if something might be squirrely with the tensioner.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 06-04-2014, 07:58 AM Thread Starter
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I just use a little bit more force and a pipe over the handle of the torque wrench to loose the 19mm bolt, sometime the mechanic tighten the bolt way past the 75Nm required torque.
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