Common Causes Of Car Belt Damages

Posted on: 17 October 2019

Many cars have multiple belts for delivering power and linking various parts of the car. These belts can suffer damage, just like other parts of the car. Below are some of the things that can lead to belt damage.

High Temperatures

Car belts are designed to operate under high temperatures, but they have their limits. If the temperature rises too high, the compounds in the rubber begin to break down. The rubber then loses some of its flexibility and begins to crack.


Each belt system is designed to handle a specific range of stress. The belt will operate within this range if the pulley system is properly aligned. If the pulley system loses its alignment, say due to an accident, the belt will be forced to twist during its run, putting more stress on the rubber than it can handle. This accelerates the wear on the belt.

Worn Pulleys

The more friction the belt experiences, the faster it wears out. For example, the rubber will wear out fast if the pulley has rough surfaces or pits that catch on the rubber's surface.

Foreign Objects

A number of foreign objects can get trapped on the belt and cause damage. Examples include pebbles, broken glass, or a loose bolt. Such foreign objects prevent the belt from moving freely, and the belt might even tear.

Oil Contamination

Too much friction is bad for the belt, but too little friction isn't good either. When the pulleys or belt is contaminated with oil, the belt loses some of its friction on the pulley, and may even slip out of its place. Such an out-of-place belt can easily get damaged.

Improper Positioning

Your car's belt may also wear out fast if the belt is not properly positioned. This may be the case, for example, if the belt is installed by an amateur or if you use the wrong belt for your car. Such a belt may move out of its position while the car is running, and that also increases wear and tear.


All belts eventually wear out and need to be replaced. The operating temperatures (that tend to be high), fuel exposure, oil exposure, friction, and the constant stress to which the belt is exposed cause minute damages that eventually accumulate to cause belt failure.

The above is not an exhaustive list of damages that might plague your car's belt. However, it gives a good indication of reasons your car might suffer belt damage. Regular maintenance of the ca should help you avoid and spot belt damages. If a belt is already damaged, consult an automotive repair mechanic for a proper replacement to prevent further problems.