Belt Slipping -

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post #1 of 6 Old 01-04-2017, 05:10 AM Thread Starter
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1998 ZJ 
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Belt Slipping

1998 ZJ with the 4.0L

Seems like every time it rains or sometimes in snow the drive belt slips. I say this because the ammeter on the dash dips from 14 V (normally its painted on the dash straight up at 14 V). Also, its pretty stock and I doubt any guards or shrouds are missing. In dry weather its fine.

Question: Will tightening the belt a bit help this problem or is this something that happens to a ZJ with the straight 6 ??

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post #2 of 6 Old 01-04-2017, 07:34 AM
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No, its not something that just happens.

Have you checked to see if the belt is tight? Maybe it needs a new belt...

Mine has a very slight squeak to it when I first start it if its been raining. It goes away after a few seconds and causes no other issues, so I leave it be. I would rather it be as loose as possible and cause no issues than to be over tight and wear out the bearings.

1994 ZJ-I6 w/216,000 mi
1998 ZJ 5.9 w/65,155 mi Slate Black
2004 KJ w/90,300 mi
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post #3 of 6 Old 01-04-2017, 07:37 AM
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I think that it may not be a belt problem. Have you ever cleaned your grounds in the engine bay? There are 2 on the passenger fender, 1 at the coil mount, and another near the dipstick.


2 '98 4.0 ZJs
Hers is stock, mine, BB, Aussie, 2x6 sliders, 31s, etc.
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post #4 of 6 Old 01-04-2017, 08:38 AM
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1993 ZJ 
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It doesn't do that on my 93. Couple thoughts:
Could be an old worn-out belt and it's marginal most of the time so a little moisture makes it slip.
Could be that you use your headlights and wipers and maybe the heater in the rain/snow so you're voltage would naturally dip somewhat.

I've gotten my belt soaking wet during engine cleaning and it slips but not for long. If your running consistently less voltage in the wet, the water would need to be fairly constantly getting on the belt to make it slip constantly.
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post #5 of 6 Old 01-04-2017, 11:41 AM
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Doesn't the 4.0 have a similar mechanical tensioner to the 5.2? Is it possible to tighten the belt manually as mentioned in the first post?

Replacing belts is pretty simple and not that expensive. If your belt is at all worn thats the first thing I'd do.

1993 Grand Cherokee Laredo
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post #6 of 6 Old 01-04-2017, 02:43 PM
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1993 ZJ 
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The 4.0, at least in the ZJ, uses a threaded tensioner. It isn't spring loaded like the 5.2.
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