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M62 8-Cylinder Engine Drive Belt Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

M62 8-Cylinder Engine Drive Belt Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$150

Talent:

****

Tools:

Set of sockets, wrenches, screwdrivers

Applicable Models:

BMW X5 Sport Utility (2000-06)

Parts Required:

Drive belts

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine

Performance Gain:

Proper engine accessory operation

Complementary Modification:

Replace tensioner or pulleys

In this article, I'll go over the steps involved with replacing the drive belts on the BMW E53 X5 models with the M62 8-cylinder engine. Be sure to work with a cool engine and remove the key from the ignition. With your engine cold and turned OFF, inspect your drive belts for wear. The belts should be free from cracks, fraying, glazing and missing chunks. Replace your belt if any of the previously mentioned issues are present or every 4 years.

Remove the engine splash shields, the cooling fan and drive belts before beginning. See our tech articles for these procedures. You do not have to remove the engine-cooling fan, however, it makes replacing the belts much easier.

BMW E53 models equipped with the M62 8-cylinder engine utilize two multi-rib engine drive belts.
Figure 1

BMW E53 models equipped with the M62 8-cylinder engine utilize two multi-rib engine drive belts. A small inner belt drives the A/C compressor (blue arrow) and the larger outer belt (green arrow) drives the alternator, coolant pump, and power steering pump. This photo shows the belts with the engine cooling fan removed. Note the belt routing here and reference this photo during reinstallation.

To replace the belt, the tension is released on the tensioner pulley (green arrow) and the idler Pulley (blue arrow).
Figure 2

To replace the belt, the tension is released on the tensioner pulley (green arrow) and the idler Pulley (blue arrow).

To release the tension, locate the tensioner (green arrow).
Figure 3

To release the tension, locate the tensioner (green arrow). Then, loosen the two 13mm tensioner fasteners (blue arrows). The yellow arrow points to the 17mm hex used to tension the belt.

Once tension is released, remove the drive belt from the idler pulley, then from the remaining pulleys.
Figure 4

Once tension is released, remove the drive belt from the idler pulley, then from the remaining pulleys. With the accessory belt removed, you can now remove the A/C belt. See the following step.

Working from below the engine, Loosen the two 13mm tensioner fasteners (blue arrows).
Figure 5

Working from below the engine, Loosen the two 13mm tensioner fasteners (blue arrows). Once tension is released, remove the belt from the tensioner pulley (green arrow). Install the new A/C belt and loop it back over the tensioner pulley. Once the belt is properly routed, rotate the 17mm tensioner hex (yellow arrow) until it reaches the stop. Hold in place and tighten the 13mm fastener at stop. Then tighten the 13mm fastener that secures the 17mm hex. Tighten 8.8 grade bolts to 22 Nm (16 ft-lb) and 10.9 grade bolts to 30 Nm (22 ft-lb). Consult our article on safely raising the front of your vehicle and securing it with jack stands, so you'll have room to work under your car. Also, always wear your safety glasses whenever you work under your vehicle.

Working from above the engine, install the new accessory belt.
Figure 6

Working from above the engine, install the new accessory belt. Start by wrapping it around the crankshaft pulley, then water pump pulley, then power steering pump pulley, then alternator and under the tensioner pulley. Then pull a loop of belt between the crankshaft and water pump pulleys. Wrap the belt around the idler pulley. Once the belt is properly routed, rotate the 17mm tensioner hex (yellow arrow) until it reaches the stop. Hold it in place and tighten the 13mm fastener to the stop. Then tighten the 13mm fastener that secures the 17mm hex. Tighten 8.8 grade bolts to 22 Nm (16 ft-lb) and 10.9 grade bolts to 30 Nm (22 ft-lb).

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Comments and Suggestions:
Jack Comments: What you are saying is once belt is installed, tensioner will do its job. So there is no chance to over tighten the belt if you move 17mm nut all the way to the stop. Right?

My belt seems to be very tight after installation and recently my water pump leaks on the shaft and I am thinking that I may over tight the belt. Thus above question. Thanks.
November 11, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Can't over-tension on an automatic tensioner unless you break the tensioner, or it is defective. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Stoan Comments: ...just in further clarifying: You state "The tensioners are automatic, once the belt is installed and the tensioner is released it tensions the belt."
Meaning the hydraulic tensioner is to be slowly pushed back and the hex fastened in place at the point where the hydraulic tensioner is fully shrinked? You do not make mention of shrinking of the tensioner or the none-shrinking of the tensioner in your original article. Your article makes mention of "turning the hex until it stops", NB: it stops as soon as it gets in touch with the tensioner before this shrinks, being a hydraulic unit.
What i then need to understand is the following:
1 is the hex to be turned only until to the point where it stops being stopped by the hydraulic tensioner before the hydraulic tensioner starts shrinking? OR
2 to turn the hex, slowly shrinking the hydraulic tensioner halfway through in allowing space for tensioning movement? OR
3 to turn the hex, slowly shrinking the hydraulic tensioner fully?
_ then locking the hex in place?

This will clarify it all for me, thanks. Great day
August 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You are over-thinking this. The tensioners are automatic, they need no help in tensioning. When relieving tension, you rotate the tensioner to relieve tension on the belt, to allow removal. When installing, simply release the tensioner, it will do it;s job without help. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Stoan Comments: Great thanks, got practical on it this past weekend, successfully installed. It being a hydraulic tensioner i had to give it a slight 'slow' push-in in allowing it some play or movement during tensioning. I also realized that the belt need not be that tight as initially assumed. I had in mind the same tensioning feel and result of the spring type tensioner. Resolved thanks Pelican Staff, appreciated!
August 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. Glad we could help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Stoan Comments: I am at work now and was just thinking on the operation of this, thus not there to do some tests... looking at it again, how does the tensioner hex work, is it connected to the tensioner plate part of the tensioner plate or does it rotate the plate upwards as you turn the tensioner bolt or nut? and is this the pressure i would be working with against the tensioner unit when i turn the tensioner hex? is this the sufficient pressure required to hold the belt firmly? it makes mention of two tension points am i correct? it states _"the tension is released on the tensioner pulley green arrow and the idler Pulley blue arrow. what is the relation of these? does the idler pully sit mounted on another tensioner is the idler pulley unit also a tensioner?
August 10, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The hex is a boss used to rotate the tensioner to relieve pressure. It is an automatic tensioner, designed to tension belt with spring or hydraulic tension. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Stoan Comments: I have read this, my question is: This process does not seem to have a tensioning effect? Why on other BMW vehicles they would i.e. use a socket and sometimes a bar in support for more back-force on the tensioner to release the tension via the tensioner releasing pressure, then when replacing the new belt you would do the same, meaning after releasing your socket/spanner the tensioner pushes back with pressure against the belt to keep the tension back on the belt. I have removed my belt X5 V8 as per the removal procedure at the top, and the belt easily collapsed for removal. I am now in doubt as to when i do put back the new belt, how will the same tension be achieved if it is only by rotating the 17mm tensioner hex yellow arrow back up to where it stops? would this not be difficult to push or rotate back? Will there be no backward force tension on this bolt or part? or is there not much tension to control on this area? and if easily managed to push back to the stop position, would the tension be enough to hold or put efficient pressure back on the belt throughout? I have not replaced the belt as yet, but concerned based on how easy it was to collapse the belt, meaning by following the same procedure in reverse would the same pressure be maintained throughout the belt by doing just that? There did not seem to be a "spring force mechanism when i removed or collapsed the belt. I am just worried if my belt was or will be firm enough...? Hope you understand my concern?
August 10, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The tensioners are automatic, once the belt is installed and the tensioner is released it tensions the belt. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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Page last updated: Sat 12/3/2016 02:25:14 AM