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  #1  
Old 6th January 2009
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Sam900T Sam900T is offline
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Question power steering belt install

I tried searching for this first but search wasn't working for me at the moment. I have two questions. I currently don't have a power steering belt installed on my '85 t16. Is it bad for the car to drive without it or is it fine? I actually bought a new belt but I heard that installing new belts yourself is tricky and you should take it to a shop to have one put on for you. So is it possible to install it myself (I don't have much mechanical skill at all), or take it to a shop? I live right down the street from Scanwest Autosport here in Seattle which specializes in Saabs, so I could take it to them as a last resort. Thanks!

Last edited by Sam900T; 6th January 2009 at 04:33 PM.
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  #2  
Old 6th January 2009
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it is very easy to install, but if you feel you could not tackle it, they should do it in about 5 mins. not having it just means you feel like you are trying to pull a lorry with flat tyres round corners, and moving steering when staionary is virtuallly impossible or at least very hard, as the fluid (if still in there) is not being pumped round to help, the fluid is stationary so you are fighting against it. but the steering rack might have lost all it's fluid and /or the belt broke so they drained it, but you will see if you have got fluid anyway by checking the fluid level on the passenger side,fluid level bottle/container on top of the wheel arch near to screen. If you look down the back of the engine from pass side you will see the pipes and pump and V wheel for belt (and adjustment bracket)and on the bottom of the engine you will see the crankshaft V pulley with the 2 alternator belts on, and the power steering one goes on the outside of those two.
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Old 6th January 2009
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Thanks! Do you have any pics of where it's located? Is there a special tool you need to adjust it?
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Old 7th January 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam900T
Thanks! Do you have any pics of where it's located? Is there a special tool you need to adjust it?
Look at the bulkhead end of the engine bay.

If you've got air con, the air con compressor is on top of the engine, with a single belt heading round a tensioner and down to the crank pulley. To the left (looking from the front, so US passenger side) of that, behind the cylinder head, is the power steering pump, again with a single belt. To the other side of the compressor is a pair of belts driving the water pump and alternator.

To replace the p/s belt, you just need to loosen the adjuster on top of the pump, slip the belt round both pulleys, then tighten the adjuster so the belt has a bit of deflection, about 5-10mm pressed in the middle of the longest stretch.

You'll need to remove the aircon belt to get to it. From memory, I can't remember if the p/s is behind the pair of belts or not, though. If it is, you'll need to remove those, too. But you'd be wise to replace the lot in one go.
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Old 7th January 2009
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12/13/14/15mm sockets/spanners should do the trick (I can't remember off the top of my head what size the nut is on the sterring pump bracket.)
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Old 7th January 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Rock
12/13/14/15mm sockets/spanners should do the trick (I can't remember off the top of my head what size the nut is on the sterring pump bracket.)
Almost certainly 13mm. Everything else seems to be.

I didn't even know I owned a 13mm spanner or socket until I bought the flamin' 900.
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Old 7th January 2009
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13mm it is on all 3 nuts on the pump. I was getting confused with the 8V pump. If there is no aircon then the belt comes off without disturbing the alternator/waterpump belts. If A/C is on the car that belt needs to come off first


I can't believe I've had the '89 6 years and not changed the belts yet
Maybe when it comes back from the bodyshop next week I'll treat it, now that it starts and runs better after changing the coil...
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Old 11th March 2009
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So my car has a/c and I was able to get the a/c belt off. When I loosened the bolt off from the power steering pump, however, I wasn't able to move anything? Is there more than one bolt I have to remove from the power steering pump? Also I wanted to double check, the power steering belt does go behind (towards engine) the a/c belt?
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Old 12th March 2009
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like the alternator there is a securing bolt and a tensioning bolt, get a torch and look down at the machanism the belt runs on,you should see the bolt that secures it, if you cannot see in daylight well enough
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Old 12th March 2009
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Alright I've finally got the power steering belt installed and it's running great! Now I have to change my signature. Thanks guys your info really helped. I used to like my saab, but now that I can actually TURN it, I love my Saab.
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  #11  
Old 12th March 2009
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Hi Sam,

I'm glad you got the belt done in the end. I was going to post this the other day when I read your highly entertaining 'learning to drive stick' thread but I didn't have time and as it turns out, since you have aircon, it wouldn't have worked

For anyone who doesn't have aircon (so the P/S belt is the nearest to the bulkhead/firewall), the only tool needed to fit a new belt, after the old one is cut off or has broken, is the ignition key!

You loop the new belt around the crank pulley and as far round the P/S pulley as you can get it. Crank the engine and the belt will either walk onto the pulley or ping off. If it pings off, just repeat but put the belt onto the P/S pulley the opposite way to the first time. With the engine stopped, check the tension in the belt and 9 times out of 10 it will be fine.

Warning: don't be tempted to hold the belt in place and have someone else crank the engine.....unless you don't need your fingers

Cheers

Chris
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Old 12th March 2009
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So I took my car out for a test drive to see how the power steering was working and from a standstill, major improvement. Couple questions. Although it turns a lot easier when stopped, when going around traffic circles (islands) the steering will get tougher. I assume this only happens when the wheel is turned mostly to the left or right. Is this normal? Could I have a leak maybe somewhere?
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