Belts, Hoses & Filters
At Ewing Auto Service in Mount Vernon, serving the southern Illinois Area, we see a lot of problems caused by neglected hose, belt, and filter maintenance. These items are durable and last a long time, but not forever, and rarely give warning before they start causing trouble. For this reason, people often find themselves inconvenienced by a failed belt, hose, or filter; it’s one of those things that simply slip your mind until it causes you trouble.
Rubber belts experience two types of wear; mechanical, and age. When your engine is running, your belts are wearing out. The belts drive everything on your engine - the alternator, water pump, A/C, power steering, and even the camshafts and valve train. Constant wear and tear from moving pulleys coupled with repeated heating up and cooling down eventually wear a belt out completely. Belts also dry rot with age and become weak and brittle after years of contact with the environment. Belts are necessary for your electrical, charging, and cooling system to operate - if one of them snaps, you’ll likely find yourself stranded. A timing belt can cause far worse problems, likely costing you an engine. Proper inspection and replacement is key to maintaining a reliable vehicle.
Hoses are also susceptible to wear from heating and cooling, and age. Hoses generally contain pressure, which constantly puts stress on them while the engine is running. For this reason, a small tear or pinhole can quickly develop into something much more serious, and suddenly you are rapidly losing coolant, fuel, or vacuum. Damage can occur from moving parts, repeated expansion, or dry rot. Hoses should be changed before a problem arises if they are visibly cracked, damaged, or worn...broken hoses cause huge messes, overheating, fire hazards, and are generally inconvenient.