Of Serpentine Belts and Sticky Buns (part 1)

Of Serpentine Belts and Sticky Buns (part 1)

Aug 6, 2019 · 5 min read
Funny thing about car repairs — when you buy used Honda Odyssey models like I do — they still run but simply have more than 150,000 miles on them and perhaps a few cosmetic and mechanical challenges.

Enter Moody Blues — the 2001 Honda Odyssey we bought a few years ago. Named after the band from the 60’s? Yes. Was it also mechanically moody? Indeed. Was it also…blue? Yes.

We got it for an excellent price, as the previous owner had driven it into a wall or something, and it needed new airbags, and the removal of the locked seatbelts and installation of other, functional seatbelts.

Little did that seller know, we had a 2000 Honda Odyssey, named “Bandit” as my historic plates-wearing 1995 Honda Odyssey went by the name of Smoky, in our driveway on it’s last legs.

Smokey and the Bandit was the goal of the Odysseys’ names.

So the mechanic’s shop, E and D Auto — truly the BEST mechanic we’ve ever used and a mechanic store which has a google user rating of 4.9 from +25 reviewers, swapped the airbags and Moody Blues was good to go.

We then drove it to see the eclipse — because apparently it was important (why?) to be in the totality of the eclipse when it happened. Well, we did that — by driving from DC to the northernmost part of the path of totality:

Due to the crazy amount of people who drove down south to see the eclipse, and as most of us headed back on the same day and as the roads weren’t really built to handle that much traffic, we ended up staying an extra night in Virginia.

The traffic the next day wasn’t much better but we had to get home, so we did.

This leads us to needing to replace the transmission.

Enter the airbag-less 2000 Honda Odyssey, who nobly made another non-sentient self-sacrifice and ended up getting donated to Kars for Kids, per the norm (for us) with Moody’s old transmission inside her.

So all is well for a while, a few minor fixes here and there, up until last week.

We were driving to the swimming pool with the kids and the power doors then power windows stopped working. Then the transmission stopped working. Then all the gages (speedometer, engine temperature, etc.) stopped working. So we turned on our emergency flashers and called Triple AAA — little did Moody Blues know that her shenanigans had prompted us to get a little extra insurance.

Triple AAA picked us up in less than 15 minutes — see Of Alternators and Attitudes: https://medium.com/@homemaides/of-alternators-automotive-mechanics-and-attitude-50c5a08a3d9c

The mechanic Moody Blues was towed to told us it would be $650 to replace the alternator. Naturally, I said:

E and D auto then gave us the same price estimate.

This leads us to DIY Jeff on Youtube — how to replace an alternator in a 2001 Honda Odyssey.

The 7th step is to loosen the idler suspension. Check.

Then, remove the bolts on the alternator.

This leads us to the Serpentine Belt Pulley Tool, which I bought from Amazon for about $20.

Unfortunately, I parked on a hill since our driveway was in use by our recently-purchased silver Honda Odyssey, named Jimothy Flash Silver (why? I don’t know.) After jacking up the Odyssey many times to get enough access under it, to use the Serpentine Belt pulley tool, we completed that step yesterday.

I didn’t remove the battery as E and D Auto installed a new battery which was dead a few days later due to the alternator malfunctioning.

This leads us to the bolts.

The frontward bolt a 9mm, came off easily.

The rear bolt, a 14mm, will not budge.

Using the serpentine belt and then the newly purchased 14mm wrench, the rear bolt remained stuck and not only stuck but rounded and unable to be gripped by the many 14mm wrenches we now own.

This leads us to: extractor bolts.

After we successfully replace it (see Of Serpentine Belts and Sticky Buns, part 2), we will party with STICKY BUNS!!!

Buy some and party with us!

The Bottom Line:

Homemaide lets you buy what makes you smile and sell your style. We understand that one of your pictures is worth 1,000 purchases and we’ll help you earn the money facebook, Linkedin, twitter, etc. have been making off of you, for years.

If you update your status with an experience you’ve had working on cars, or listening to music that you love, or eating food that is beyond delicious (think: sticky buns), Homemaide lets your friends upload a pic of your status and buy the item they love the most. For your friends who are cooks, chefs, and Maître D’ positions, they might love the sticky buns part of your story. For your mechanically-inclined friends, they might like the tool products in your status update. For your other friends, they might love the music you posted or the shoes you’re wearing, Homemaide lets them purchase what makes them smile and sends YOU a commission from each purchase. That's the magic of Homemaide!

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