idler pulley siezed up?

General information about the first-generation Nissan Maxima in the US. What was the Datsun 810 became the luxury leader Maxima in the US in 1981.

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padlamoij
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Location: East Point, GA

idler pulley siezed up?

#1

Post by padlamoij » 12 years ago

Hey everyone... I've had my 83 maxima station wagon for a year and a half and this site has been soooo helpful to me. I use it all the time. thanks to everyone who helps out around here.

Also, I'm a long long way from a car expert.

I now have a problem that i cannot find the answer to here. My car started making that squeeling noise you hear when the power steering is turned too far in the cold or something like that. well sure enough i was driving down the street and the noise started up and then my power steering went out.

I opened the hood and could hear a loud grinding/squeeling and it sounded like it was coming from the idler pulley. also the belts would lock up. I banged on the pulley a few times with a wrench. seemed to stop the problem for the 3 minutes that it took to get home.

My question is... Would a bad idler pulley bearing lock up the belts on its own? And if it is the idler pulley, where is a good place to go hunting down a bearing? I'm not to sure about setting the tension on the belt when i put the pulley back in. I've never done that before.

And if you're thinking I should have someone who knows what they are doing do it, then i would say your right, but of the 40 places I called no one would go near it with a ten foot pole.

Any help would really be appreciated. I hope I gave enough information and didn't make any party fouls.

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kassim503
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#2

Post by kassim503 » 12 years ago

Welcome to our sandbox! :-D
Dont forget to fill out your profile in your spare time
And if you're thinking I should have someone who knows what they are doing do it, then i would say your right, but of the 40 places I called no one would go near it with a ten foot pole.
Dont get intimidated by the car, its got a roomy engine compartment, with easy to fix old school technology.

A frozen idler pulley on the ps belt could lock up the belt because the belt wraps around quite a bit of it. I never experienced a PS idler freezing, but when my A/c idler froze it would stop the belt when the clutch was engaged (under load)

Its not really hard to take apart and change the bearing, they are sold at FLAPS, I got my replacement from napa for 11-12 bucks, IIRC. Pull out the idler pulley itself, its made out of 3 pieces, the pulley itself, the bearing, and a sleeve that goes between the inside race of the bearing and the stud its mounted on. The sleeve probably wouldnt come off too easy, because if it was tight enough to freeze up, im sure its in there good. Take a huge flathead screwdriver, anything and hammer the sleeve out, then you need to locate a circlip plier, and pull one circlip out, hammer the old bearing out, take the new bearing, hammer it in with a socket that would make contact only to the outer race of the bearing, then re-assemble and shes good to go.

I know that paragraph is a hike, but thats really the step by step directions on changing the bearing in this. Everything isnt pressed in, so everything will come out with a small hammer.

When you take apart the idler pulley, just check for extensive scoring on parts, and replace them with some JY Z car or maxima parts, or if you can find them new, all the better.

Also when you get/order a new bearing, make sure you find its place of origin, shy away from the made in china ones, poor quality builds lead to premature failure, and a hassle. I always try shooting for american or japanese bearings, with america as my #1 choice, try to preserve some american jobs.

Belt tensioning- tighten the belt till the slack is out, then keep tightening while periodically pushing on the belt with a finger with about 20 lbs of force, and tighten it until the belt only goes down 1-.5 inches, like just push on it and see how much deflection it has. it shouldnt be impossible to push down, I keep them around 3/4 of an inch, If its a new belt thats getting tightened, take it for a 20 minute cruise for it to break in, and recheck the tension by pushing it. Just gotta put it in to the level where its not squeaking when its wet, and also you dont wanna tighten it too much, because it hurts the bearings on whatever the belt wraps around.

Sorry for no pictures, I dont have a camera with me right now, im sure I could find some photos on the internet if you have trouble doing the job.
'83 maxima sedan, l24e, a/t, black

227K SOLD 6/7/2012

padlamoij
Posts: 6
Joined: 12 years ago
Location: East Point, GA

#3

Post by padlamoij » 12 years ago

wow, thanks a lot. that really helps me out. i was the most worried about getting the tension right on the belt.

I checked out napa and found a couple bearings for like 15 bucks. i guess i'll give it a shot and see what happens. thank you.

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asavage
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#4

Post by asavage » 12 years ago

Please take a minute and update your Profile (select "Profile" at the top of any page) and fill in at least your geographic location. If you add your car's specs to your Signature, it will save a lot of Qs later.

I've moved this thread to "Gen1 Maximas" because it applies to both gasser & diesel.

Kassim has given you good advice.

The vee-belt idler bearings (both PS and A/C) are fairly easy to replace.

(click on any image for larger)
Image Image

The bearing industry number is 6203, and you want it with seals both sides. The "seals both sides" suffix nomenclature varies from mfgr to mfgr, so it's best just to ask for "seals both sides" and let the salesperson figure out how to turn that into their part number suffix.

If you have an internal retaining ring plier, you can remove the ring fairly easily. Tap out the center bushing. To remove the bearing from the sheave, support the sheave on a couple of blocks of wood spaced just wider than the brg's outer race, then beat on the bearing's inner race. Since it's a bad brg, you don't care that this removal technique damages the brg's races.

You may want to dress the brg seating area in the bore of the sheave with some sandpaper to clean it up, then lightly lubricate it, and tap the new brg in place using 2x4 or any chunk of wood to get it to the flush point, then tap it the remainder (below flush) using a suitable chunk of pipe, a brg driver, a large socket, or a punch if you're very careful, working around the edge and not slipping and damaging the seal.

Put the retaining ring back in, clean, lube and tap into place the inner bushing, etc. If it requires more than a "tap" to install the bushing, support the brg's inner race on a socket so the impact is not going through the balls.
Regards,
Al S.

1982 Maxima diesel wagon, 2nd & 4th owner, 165k miles, rusty & burgundy/grey. Purchased 1996, SOLD 16Feb10
1983 Maxima diesel wagon, 199k miles, rusty, light yellow/light brown. SOLD 14Jul07
1981 720 SD22 (scrapped 04Sep07)
1983 Sentra CD17, 255k, bought 06Jul08, gave it away 22Jun10.

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asavage
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#5

Post by asavage » 12 years ago

Another tip: you cannot replace the PS belt (with a new one) without removing the fan clutch and water pump sheave. I've tried. If you succeed in installing a new PS belt without removing the WP sheave, it will fail shortly. I've tried.

The fan clutch comes off by loosening the four 10mm head nuts on the WP sheave, then loosening the alternator (14mm head bolt at the top, 17mm for the two bottom bolts) to take tension off the sheave. You can remove the sheave without slackening the alternator belt, but you can't get it back on.

1983 Wagon that had battery acid left all over it (click on image for larger):
Image
Regards,
Al S.

1982 Maxima diesel wagon, 2nd & 4th owner, 165k miles, rusty & burgundy/grey. Purchased 1996, SOLD 16Feb10
1983 Maxima diesel wagon, 199k miles, rusty, light yellow/light brown. SOLD 14Jul07
1981 720 SD22 (scrapped 04Sep07)
1983 Sentra CD17, 255k, bought 06Jul08, gave it away 22Jun10.

padlamoij
Posts: 6
Joined: 12 years ago
Location: East Point, GA

#6

Post by padlamoij » 12 years ago

thanks for all the pictures... that really helps. I just went outside and looked at it again and listened. It's definitely that pulley that's grinding.

I don't plan on replacing the belt. it looks like its in good shape and that sounds a lot more chances of me screwing things up. that retaining ring might be a pain to get out without the right pliers, but i'll give it a shot.

Where you go to buy a bearing? I looked it up on napa and there are two different ones... before and after 7/83. do you know how to figure out if the car was before or after 7/83? I guess i'll just have to pull it out and look at it.

again, thank you very much for all the information.
1983 Diesel Maxima

Carimbo
Posts: 459
Joined: 14 years ago

#7

Post by Carimbo » 12 years ago

padlamoij wrote:I don't plan on replacing the belt. it looks like its in good shape and that sounds a lot more chances of me screwing things up.
Might as well buy the belt while you are there. If it locked up the steering as you described, chances are it burned thru portions of the belt. A few extra $$ now will save you the bad words when you have to take (almost) everything all apart again to replace the belt.
padlamoij wrote:do you know how to figure out if the car was before or after 7/83? I guess i'll just have to pull it out and look at it.
You will like this: Look at the edge of the driver's door right near the latch mechanism-- is there a mfg. sticker there that contains the build date?

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asavage
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#8

Post by asavage » 12 years ago

(click on image for larger)
Image
padlamoij wrote:that retaining ring might be a pain to get out without the right pliers, but i'll give it a shot.
You can buy a very good retaining ring pliers set (or a KD, which is pretty good) for $30. A cheap one for under $10. You will curse a lot less if you have one. You can make do with two or three No. 0 flat-blade screwdrivers for this particular job, but with all the money you saved by only having to replace the brg instead of the whole idler (11945-W1700, $68), you can afford to enhance your tool situation to include this tool. You will use it again.
Where you go to buy a bearing? I looked it up on napa and there are two different ones... before and after 7/83. do you know how to figure out if the car was before or after 7/83?
Carimbo has given that answer: the riveted-on data plate on the driver's door jamb has the Production Date.

However . . . 7/83 = 1984 Model Year, and if you have a factory diesel, it's not an '84 (no LD28s in Gen1 Maximas in 1984).

Nissan FAST (the parts lookup program) only lists a single brg for all years/all models of Gen1 Maxima for the PS Idler. I've given you the industry number upthread: go into pretty much ANY parts store and try that number first, don't even tell them what it's for. If they go,"huh", go somewhere else.

You can also buy from a bearing supplier. McGuire, KAMAN, Applied Bearing Technologies, there are dozens of bearing suppliers.

I advise specifying "not made in China" if you have a choice. A Chinese brg will run under $10, possibly under $5. A "good" non-Chinese brg will be four to five times that much. Brg mfgrs I like are SKF, FAG, some Nachi, NTN (OEM for Nissan in that era), Fafnir, Timken.
Regards,
Al S.

1982 Maxima diesel wagon, 2nd & 4th owner, 165k miles, rusty & burgundy/grey. Purchased 1996, SOLD 16Feb10
1983 Maxima diesel wagon, 199k miles, rusty, light yellow/light brown. SOLD 14Jul07
1981 720 SD22 (scrapped 04Sep07)
1983 Sentra CD17, 255k, bought 06Jul08, gave it away 22Jun10.

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kassim503
Posts: 1027
Joined: 14 years ago
Location: Stony Brook, NY

#9

Post by kassim503 » 12 years ago

asavage wrote:Another tip: you cannot replace the PS belt (with a new one) without removing the fan clutch and water pump sheave. I've tried. If you succeed in installing a new PS belt without removing the WP sheave, it will fail shortly. I've tried.
Wow, the diesel pulley setup is completley different from the gasser! thats pretty interesting how they set it up
'83 maxima sedan, l24e, a/t, black

227K SOLD 6/7/2012

padlamoij
Posts: 6
Joined: 12 years ago
Location: East Point, GA

Success!!

#10

Post by padlamoij » 12 years ago

I finally received the bearing in the mail and this morning I replaced the bearing in the idler pulley. The bearing ended up being a russian one with a bunch of russian alphabet gibberish which i didn't understand. If I had though about it sooner I would have taken a picture of it. I am pleased to say that its running like a gazelle. I want to sincerely thank asavage kassam503 and carimbo. without your help I would have never been able to pull it off. Especially giving me the bearing number. When i pulled the old bearing out it was completely wrecked. I would have never been able to tell what type of bearing it was. here's a picture of what it looked like when i pulled it out.
Image

You guys really bailed me out on this one. I definitely don't have the cash for a new ride. Below this i'll just describe what I did in case someone else has a similar problem.

I didn't replace the PS belt but I will have to do this very soon as it looked like it was in pretty bad shape. I was able to pull the pulley out without removing or adjusting anything but the tension screws on the pulley housing pt# 11395. By making the pulley as loose as possible i was able to slide it under the belt and remove it.

I removed the retaining ring with a pair of needle nose pliers to pinch the ring through the eyelets and a couple of small flathead screwdrivers to work it out. I would recommend that anyone who attempts this in the future should purchase a set of retaining ring pliers, as it took close to an hour and was full of cursing and pinching fingers.

The sheave tapped out of the pulley pretty easily with a few light hits of a hammer. I used a socket and hammer to tap the sheave from the busted bearing.

I i needed to use the hammer again to sit the sheave into the new bearing and them a socket and hammer to tab the bearing and sheave into the pulley. The retaining ring snapped back in pretty easily with a couple of flathead screwdrivers.

I tried to push the the pulley back onto the tension housing but was unable to generate enough pressure to push it all the way down the shaft. I eventually decided to remove the housing(pt# 11395) from the engine block and then push the pulley onto it while outside the car and then reattaching the pulley and housing to the engine block as one unit.
1983 Diesel Maxima

ChrisQ
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Joined: 13 years ago
Location: centralia washington

#11

Post by ChrisQ » 12 years ago

My idler bearing done the same thing last monday,but i did not hear any noise but i smelt rubber! I looked down at the gauges and the temp was higher than normal. It was raining hard out side so i got off I5 at tumwater and parked at fredmeyers. I opened the hood and noticed that the fan was not turning, so shut the engine off. So i closed the hood got a ride home. When i got to work the next morning and ordered a waterpump and belts.

I go up and start the car 1 more time! this time than fan is turning,then made a loud squeeeel,as i watched the idler smoking.

Stupid me if i had noticed that the night before,i could have just cut the belt and drove home. Thats what i did anyway. Now its got new bearing and belts. I kept the new water pump,its in the trunk for safe keeping

ChrisQ
2 1982 maximas. One is a nice driver.
other is for converting jeep camanche pickup to diesel!

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kassim503
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Location: Stony Brook, NY

#12

Post by kassim503 » 12 years ago

Does the fan belt have a idler on the diesel?

I would definitley not cut the fan belt off, because its spinning the WP, which really has to be spun or its game over. Did the alternator light turn on?
'83 maxima sedan, l24e, a/t, black

227K SOLD 6/7/2012

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asavage
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#13

Post by asavage » 12 years ago

The PS belt has an idler and drives the fan/WP.

The alternator has no idler and drive the fan/WP.

The A/C has an idler and does not drive anything else.

I have driven two cars with no fan belt at all. One was a '62 Mercury Comet Wagon with a 144ci Six. I drove it sixty miles without a fan belt. If there is no belt, the fan can be pushed by incoming air and will rotate a little bit, and I was babying the vehicle and not pushing it hard. Or maybe it was thermosiphoning -- like a Model T. It did not overheat.

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