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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My serpentine belt had cracks in it so I brought my 2002 Outback in to get that changed and get an oil change. A couple days later there was a whining noise from the engine and a bit of smoke coming out, I was done using it for the day. Went to take a short spin and see if it was happening the next day and the car lost power steering and I had to get it towed. Brought it back to the shop and they said the idler pulley and the bracket broke off and thus the serpentine belt came off.

At this point I am pretty pissed. A $125 serpentine belt replacement has now turned into a $625 job. Is this something that can normally happen or more importantly, should happen? Should I be furious and put up a stink to the repair shop about how this is their fault? I am pretty upset that a piece they directly worked on then lead to more failures and more expenses. Does anyone have any feedback or had similar issues? Did they put the belt on too tight or something leading to a failure? What options if any do I have for dealing with the repair shop?

Thanks,
Chris
 

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Meh.
I has wagons.
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12,348 Posts
Well, a thorough shop would replace the pulleys along with the belt. A budget job would not. A fresh belt with more tension could hasten the death of an already failing pulley.

Difficult if not impossible to prove causation not correlation unless there are signs of obvious damage/failure from over torqueing or not tightening bolts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yea, I tried not to get too frustrated at first because I could see a new belt providing more pressure and thus breaking it. But now I feel like I have just been taken for a ride. I called another shop and they quoted a price almost half of what the current shop is charging me, but the current shop already did the work on the car. So between what I think was a lack of due diligence and now hefty prices I am pretty pissed off.
 
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