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How do you Change, Replace, or Install 1997-2003 Chevrolet Malibu Serpentine Belt Tensioner Replacement





Tools required:

  • 3/8 Drive ratchet handle

  • 15mm socket/ratchet with extension

  • 18mm socket/ratchet with extension

  • Jack/Engine Hoist


Step 1: Open the vehicle's hood.

NOTE: Using the jack (or engine hoist), support the engine weight. DO NOT jack the engine UP, yet, as we only want to support the engine as we remove the mounting bolts.

Step 2: Loosen and remove the 18mm engine mount bolts (2) on the PASSENGER'S side of the engine.

Step 3: Loosen and remove the 15mm engine mount bolts (2) on the PASSENGER'S side of the engine.

Step 4: You can now LIFT the engine up using the jack or hoist. Remove the engine mount bracket.

Step 5: Using the 3/8 drive ratchet handle, insert the square end into the opening on the BOTTOM of the belt tensioner. Turn the tensioner COUNTER CLOCKWISE to release the tension on the belt. You can now remove the serpentine belt. SLOWLY ease the tensioner back to its resting position.


The belt tensioner is located just BELOW the alternator.

NOTE: If the serpentine belt looks frayed or worn, we recommend replacing it, as it'll never be easier than it is right now!

Step 6: Loosen and remove the 15mm mounting bolt (1) that secures the belt tensioner to the engine. You can now remove it from the vehicle.

Step 7: Mount the new belt tensioner by tightening the 15mm bolt (1).

Step 8: Using the belt routing diagram posted near the radiator, on the UNDERSIDE of the hood, or in the owner's manual, route the belt around the proper pulleys.

Step 9: Once the belt is in place, use the 3/8 drive ratchet handle to turn the tensioner CLOCKWISE, securing the belt's position.


NOTE: The belt should be taut, but not overly tight or stretched!

Step 10: Lower the engine jack or hoist slightly, aligning the engine mount at the proper height. Attach the engine mount bracket, and tighten the 15mm (2) and 18mm (2) bolts about ¾ of the way.

Step 11: SLOWLY lower the engine onto the bracket, and tighten the bracket bolts (4) the rest of the way. Once they are fully tightened, you can lower the jack completely.



These Part Change / Installation Instructions Apply to
03 2003, 02 2002, 01 2001, 00 2000, 99 1999, 98 1998, 97 1997 Chevrolet Malibu Serpentine Belt Tensioner Replacement Instructions
- POPULAR GUIDES: CHEVROLET MALIBU -

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