93 mercedes 190e belt tensioner
Has there been a known problem with this part going out? My mom took it in to get the
belt replaced and after they put the new one on they came back and said that the belt
tensioner was squeaking and appeared to be loose and told here that it needs to be
replaced. They said that it was going to be 400 for the part and 3 hours of labor. When
she told me this I thought they were blowing smoke in her face cause I found the part at
auto zone for 188.99. Is it there fault it's supposedly not working right?
It is a wear item and since her car is a 1993, it was probably overdue. These typically need to be replaced around 80K-100K.. It's the pulley bearings that wear out first, and they sometimes are part of the tensioner assembly, so the whole part has to be replaced. $400 is for the OEM dealer mark-up part. If you good wrenching, you might want to replace it for her to save some cash.
The trouble with these tensioners is mechanics that don't know what they're doing. The tensioner is adjusted by a 13mm bolt which stands vertically from the adjuster body. This is connected to a rod which inturn is connected to a kind of cam washer inside the adjuster body. Now, what people often don't know when trying to adjust the aux belt is that the cam at the end of the rod is locked in place via a 19mm bolt going horizontally through the front of the adjuster body and that trying to make any adjustment without first undoing this 19mm bolt can cause the tensioner to break at the bottom part. It really isn't that difficult to change and the 3 hours repair time is a load of tosh. 1.5 - 2 hours tops for a reasonably competent mechanic with a repair manual, a socket set and a couple of allen/hex keys
The 19mm bolt is actually 17mm and is located here... http://www.dognmonkey.com/media/91mercedes/17mm_tensi on.jpg and this is a picture of the cam washer which gets broken... https://www.carpartsdiscount.com/auto/archive/pictures/136 816/600/1/P/67F74E5/mercedes_190e_1990_belt_tensioner_ adjuster_oem_103_200_02_36_1032000236.jpg
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