I’m on the side of the road, the tension pulley bolt came loose now it won’t go back in

Its a 351 Cleveland Engine, if that makes any difference

My car has 71330 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Experienced mechanics share their insights in answering this question :
Look at the threads to see if the bolt is left hand threads, or standard right hand threads. If the threads are damaged, then use a thread chaser to clean them out. If the pulley bearings seized, it may have caused the problem. You may have to replace the tensioner assembly.

How to Identify and Fix Common car Problems ?

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Causes of Belt Tensioner Wobbling

In general, belt tensioners tend to get noisy when they fail. If your belt tensioner is chirping or makes other noises, it is often an indication that the part is old and needs to be replaced. You can even remove the belt, spin each pulley, and listen for rumbling or other noises.

There should be no movement or play from side to side. Misalignment – Misaligned pulleys will cause belt chirp noise problems and are caused by worn bearings.
Use the extension/breaker bar on the grooved pulley tensioner arm, rotate the tensioner counter clockwise to remove the pin/bolt. Slowly allow the tensioner to rotate in a clockwise direction until the tensioner reaches the low stop. Remove the three bolts that attach the tensioner to the engine.
Belt-driven accessories fail

A seized or loose drive belt tensioner can cause the belt to snap, which will disables those accessories and can cause problems such as overheating, a dead electrical system and battery, or a disabled AC system.

Tensioners: The Main Differences Explained. The primary distinction between tensioners and idler pulleys is the presence of an adjustable bolt. Tensioners are positioned on the bolt through mounting. Idler pulleys are not mounted to an adjustable bolt.
Friction f=ΔT in the pulley opposes motion and acts down on the right. Because the pulley is massless the forces on it must balance at all times – otherwise, with a finite resultant torque it would have infinite acceleration. So the tension would be greater on the left : TL=f+TR.
An over-tightened belt can burn out any bearing that the belt rotates on, including alternator, power steering pump, A/C compressor, idler pulleys, etc. An over-tightened timing belt can ruin any pulley bearing it is connected with.
The main physical difference between an idler pulley and tensioner pulley is a simple adjustable bolt! However, in terms of function and purpose, an idler pulley is responsible for guiding a belt drive in an engine or mechanical system, while a tensioner pulley is responsible for tensioning the drive belt.
A tensioner bearing consists of a base, tensioner arm, spring, and pulley. It provides pressure to a timing belt that drives other pulleys while easing the strain on that belt.
Yes it can. However, it will not charge the battery, or move the water pump, or power steering pump, or even the AC compressor. So it will be a race to see what happens first, the engine overheating, or the battery dying.
If the dampener is not able to control the tensioner arm, it can cause fluctuations in tension. The belt may oscillate between too little tension and too much tension. The belt will slip and catch, causing noise and vibration.
Driving with a bad belt tensioner is unsafe since the tensioner is meant to guarantee ample tension that powers accessories. Wear on the belt tensioner will eventually cause the belt to slip, generate loud noise, and also create an unsafe level of heat along the accessory pulleys.
When the harmonic balancer is wobbling, it would be best not to run the engine. The harmonic balancers function is to counteract the vibrations in the engine so damage doesn`t occur. When it fails, it can cause premature wear on the bearings, or lead to major engine damage.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

I’m on the side of the road, the tension pulley bolt came loose now it won’t go back in
ANSWER : Look at the threads to see if the bolt is left hand threads, or standard right hand threads. If the threads are damaged, then use a thread chaser to clean them out. If the pulley bearings seized, it may have caused the problem. You may have to replace the tensioner assembly.

My car won’t go past 35mph
ANSWER : Hi there. From the description you provided, your vehicle has problems with the transmission again. You stated it will not shift into 3rd gear again, like before the transmission was rebuilt. If the transmission is again the problem, it should be covered under warranty. It could be a faulty shift solenoid. The shift indicator not reading properly could be a faulty transmission position sensor. If this is an overall lack of performance issue, according to your last statement, then possibly you have a restriction in the exhaust system. I recommend having your vehicle’s problems inspected and diagnosed by a certified technician from YourMechanic.

I have a 2011 ford fusion that shuts off when I’m in the freeway going at 80mph. Does anyone knows what’s wrong with it?
ANSWER : It is possible that you could be having issues with your powertrain control module. This module is the computer for your engine and transmission and may require reprogramming or replacement. I would recommend visiting your local Ford dealership as they have the scan tools and other necessary equipment to diagnose such an uncommon symptom.

2008 GMC Acadia: passenger side window switch will make the window go down, but not back up. Now master switch on driver’s side wo
ANSWER : The switch internals of one or both switches are faulty or there is a bad connection to the switches. To resolve this, the switches have to be removed from the door so that you can get access to the terminals. From there it is a simple matter of testing for switch continuity or power on the right terminals when the switch is supposed to be commanding up or down operation. Any switch not working as intended is condemned and replaced. If you want these steps performed by a certified Mechanic, dispatched by YourMechanic right to your location, please request a power window switch diagnostic and the responding certified mechanic will get this resolved for you. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

My idler pulley bolt snapped off on my 98 ford contour, what does the pulley bolt go into so I can get that part
ANSWER : The part is a bracket and due to the age of the car the part is almost undoubtedly no longer available from Ford and there is no aftermarket for this part. The normal practice in a case like this is to simply drill the bolt out, re-thread the hole (with a heli-coil insert if necessary) and the problem is solved. This can sometimes be done without removing the part from the car (compact right angle drills) but even if you have to unbolt a bracket, once you have the bracket off it becomes even easier to just drill it out and thus will be much cheaper to fix what you have, and less time consuming than running around to junkyards trying to find a used part. Repair of broken bolts is no big deal and is a routine occurrence in the field. I would recommend you simply request repair service for the bolt repair and this can be resolved quickly by a mobile mechanic who travels right to your location. If you have further questions or concerns as you decide what to do, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic because we want you to make the most of your repair dollars and help you get the best possible results.

I have a 2006 Honda Accord and the dash lights and radio willl sometimes go off then come right back on when I’m going about 40 mph.
ANSWER : The code P0685 refers to the main ECM (computer) relay has lost power. Check the main relay and see if its getting hot. A hot relay will disconnect to cool off and reconnect. If the relay is getting hot, then either the relay is burned and needs replaced or there is a loose wire in the relay circuit.

If you need further assistance with your dashboard lights flashing on and off, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

Manual transmission won’t go into any gears.
ANSWER : Hi there. It is possible that the transmission may have gotten into the wrong gear at the wrong time and could have damaged that counter shaft or the main shaft in the transmission. First drain the oil from the transmission and see if there is any metal in the oil. If there is metal and maybe chunks of metal, then something came apart inside the transmission. If the oil is clean, then the shifter rail could have bent the forks or the synchronizers could have ground down. I recommend seeking out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you diagnose your transmission issue.

Do I need to replace the hubs to go back to factory wheel bolts.
ANSWER : You’re wise to go back to factory fasteners. While there are a few good quality aftermarket products out there for your car, most of the options are a kind of one-size-fits-all that involve spacers and adapters that change the design offset and lead to all kinds of suspension and wheel bearing problems. you should not need to replace the hubs as long as the threads are not damaged. It should be possible to extract the studs through conventional means. If a hub IS damaged, then there is no choice but to replace it. This will involve replacing the wheel bearing as well so it can get expensive. If this project is more than you want to take on, you can contact Your Mechanic to have a technician come to your home or office and change out your wheels for you