Having a car makes your life very easy. You can go wherever, whenever you want to. However, if your engine fails in the middle of the road, you can face many difficulties. So, it is important to learn some hacks and tricks to repair your car on your own when you do not have the provision to call a mechanic, even though it is best advisable to call one.
Most people struggle with over-running alternator pulleys. It is very vital. It plays a very important role inside accessory belt drive systems (ABCDs). Whenever you are changing your gears or the engine is shutting down, the motion in the alternator creates resistance against the belt. Due to this resistance, overrunning alternator pulley allows the car to move in a casual way to move freely when the belt slows down. This helps to reduce friction and saves the engine from being damaged and making sounds. The over-running alternator is fit into every other car, and it becomes important to know about its functions. Not only technicians but also useful information for car owners so that they can handle and maintain it better.
How to use overrunning alternator pulley?
Overrunning alternator pulley is a semi-unidirectional clutch system. Rather than a simple solid pulley, they include a one-way clutch that allows the alternator to keep spinning at high revs when spun up but the engine revolutions per minute suddenly drop with a harsh upshift. In addition, they make things easier on the rest of the belt accessories. They are supposed to improve fuel efficiency because the alternator is never dragging on the belt. They make a huge difference in movements. They, however, tend to need replacing after a while, unlike a solid pulley normally would. When they go wrong, they tend to seize up, and the over running feature will be lost, but they make very bad noises in the process, and many complain that they make a knocking sound that you get to hear.
You can check when and whether to change the over-running alternator by checking if it has seized up by just trying to turn the alternator through its body. You need to turn the opposite to its direction of rotation by just pushing on the fan blades, and if you can turn it one way and not the other direction to which it does move would be the overrunning clutch letting it slip. Be careful when you do this because they are not very strongly built. If the pulley is working properly, it should move easily. If you cannot turn it either way, then the overrunning pulley needs a replacement. You can also take the belt off and detach it from the alternator. Then you can treat it like any other pulley and check for lateral play or slip or lash. Also, check for noise or scratchiness as you spin it. If they are bad, they will seize up, and you know you have to change it.
Things to consider when using overrunning alternator pulley
You need to remove the pulley from the car as there is not enough space to work. The shaft is made up of strong steel. You need to take a hex of a size that is suitable for the pulley. You need to get a square drive attachment, which you can attach to a bar. The special spline tool inserts in the upper section of the pulley, and it is hollow. You can get a bit through it to hold the shaft. the tools slide around this concentrically, and then both can be inserted into the pulley simultaneously, and then you work the hex on the tool with a spanner of some arrangement. It can be useful to use some penetrating oil so that it loosens up a bit. You should also check the thread direction of your pulley as it is not marked on most of them.
While this is a hack, there are other ways to do it. The much easier way to do this is to use an impact wrench. Even though it is simple, you need to be careful while using this tool. It should be handled with care as you have the risk of hurting yourself. You need to take your wrench, place it over your bolt, and start it to unleash or loosen the bolt. Then when the bolt is loosened up, you can turn it in both directions so that it comes out.
There is another way if you do not want to use a special tool. If you have a spare belt in your garage, you can use it too. Make it go around the Ac pump and the crank pulley to turn anti-clockwise and loosens the bolt. Make sure you have the right setup for this to work. Now you have to take your appropriate hex and turn it anti-clockwise. With the tool’s pressure and the belt in between the pulley, the bolt will come loose, and you can then remove the pulley easily.