AC Compressor and AUX Belt Issues - S240

Hi, has anyone had any problems with the AC compressor causing further issues to the AUX belt and pulleys?

I’ve had my car for a couple of years now and in that time, I’ve had to replace the AC compressor clutch, 2 pully’s, belt and now the tensioner has failed. So new tensioner and belt has been fitted. The dealers have just called up to say the clutch on the AC compressor is not engaging and it looks like the compressor may have failed FFS.

would a failing AC compressor potentially cause the other components to fail over time?

Sounds annoying :frowning:

I did have an issue where my alternator had broken free from the supercharger nose bracket, and the car ran “fine” like that for at least 2 years -and possibly longer since before I owned the car.

The tensioner was able to deal with the effective change in belt length but I think it took its toll, as eventually it developed a rattle. Turning the AC on caused awful rattles, which I thought was sign of my compressor failing (it wasn’t, it was just adding load to all of the other pulleys that were struggling!). Eventually it killed my alternator, I think because the body of the alternator was slumped down and eating a load of vibrations. When I finally discovered the root of all this, I found my idler and tensioner pulley were both worse for wear and needed swapping out.

Do you know what belt length was fitted previously?

I think it’s just had the standard OE belt fitted to be honest. Not sure on the length

I only ask because it’s the only common link between all of the components you’ve had problems with. May be worth double checking it, not a Lotus thing but I’ve heard of slightly too-short belts causing premature failures before, if the tensioner is pushed to its limit.

Aside from that, perhaps some sort of alignment issue on one or more of the pulleys causing a strain on the rest.

Afraid I’m just guessing though, sorry :frowning:

Slightly off topic but how often are people changing aux/ac/charger belts on their cars? And how hard is the swap?

Mine has had about 5 belts in 3 years but only because if constant faffing :mrgreen:

Should be every 2 years.

Dead easy to change, clearance to the tensioner nub that you use to slacken the belt can be a bit tight so I find a low profile 19mm (6 sided) socket on a 1/2" ratchet with extension on the handle is best.

Access from below, loosen tensioner and then just grow a third hand to wrap the new belt around, voila.

Probably allow an hour first time you do it, you’ll be doing it in 12 mins after your fifth.

Lovely thanks. Where do you get your belts from?

Seriously Lotus :thumbup:


Just an update on this, I ended up having the entire tensioner assembly replaced, as it had a groove in it… a new belt and the tensioner (which wasnt cheap) but it seems to have resolved the problem, no more noisy AUX belt which is good, and no more worry that its going to let go!