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Unread 02-10-2013, 12:13 AM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Denver, Colorado
Posts: 2
97 ZJ Belt Problem

Alright folks I cant find the problem on the ZJ. Stock 4.0 with the bad design (IMO) tension adjuster, long bolt through idler pulley. The belt keeps coming off and wedging itself behind the water pump pulley. I checked all alignment and all pulleys for wobble/loose etc. All seem OK. The part where I am stumped is it only happens when motor is shut off. I can fix it drive 1000 miles no problem then every third or fourth time the I shut it off it slips behind the water pump pulley. And only behind it stays put on everything else. What the heck!!!

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Unread 02-10-2013, 12:42 AM   #2
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1995 ZJ 
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How does the belt look on the pulleys before it get thrown? Is it riding right on the edge of the w/p? Hating the tensioner design is ok, but if it was the design itself then a lot of us would be having this problem, you either have something bent, or out of line.
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Unread 02-10-2013, 10:19 AM   #3
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Like I said everything looks good when on everything, I will have to say the belt is a little to close to the back edge of the wp pulley. Visually everything runs good lined up and everything. It only slips off when I shut off the motor. Running will stay on all day long.
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Unread 02-10-2013, 10:23 AM   #4
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1989 YJ Wrangler 
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Location: quechee Vermont
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take pictures... might try videoing it when shutting it off also
1998 ZJ 5.2 Auto

1989 Wrangler Black Bone Stock 2.5l 5spd
/l , [____],
()_) ()_)==O=)_)
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Unread 02-10-2013, 03:32 PM   #5
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2007 WK 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: NY
Posts: 1,311
The problem is not the tension adjuster but most likely one of the pulleys is mis-aligned. Look at the vibration damper on the crank pulley, when they wear out the rubber piece fails and lets the part that the belt runs on slide in or out. Mine was starting to do something similar and it was definitely the vibration damper.
2007 WK Limited Hemi QDII
1998 ZJ Laredo 4.0 Selectrac
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