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Air Compressor Belt

OurTown

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Yesterday I put a new motor on our compressor and noticed that it had a deformed spot in it. It has been on there since before we bought the wash three and a half years ago. It is a Kevlar reinforced type belt and an inch shorter than the manual suggests. It is supposed to be a 4L500. When I look up the that Kevlar belt it appears to be for outdoor power equipment and for clutching applications. I doubt the original belt was Kevlar. When I look for a standard V-belt I see several different types and materials. Some are also "cogged". Is there a go to belt type for a compressor? It would be nice if it was low stretch so I did not have to go back and retighten. Speaking of that it is a two person job without a belt or pulley jack. Can someone recommend one of those also? The only one I keep running across is the Supco and it has some reviews of people saying the welds break off the wings easily. I could make one but would like to have a more universal sized one.
 

Randy

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I use a 4L500 belt on my air compressor. About a year or so ago I bought a Kevlar D & D power drive belt on Amazon, it's worked well. I haven't had to go back and tighten it.
 

I.B. Washincars

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Get the belt as tight as you can get it, by whatever method you can, and tighten motor. After doing that, force the belt off by raising it up over the edge of a pulley while turning it by hand. Move the motor about 1/8" and roll the belt back on...you're welcome.
 

OurTown

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Get the belt as tight as you can get it, by whatever method you can, and tighten motor. After doing that, force the belt off by raising it up over the edge of a pulley while turning it by hand. Move the motor about 1/8" and roll the belt back on...you're welcome.
Dang that's tight! Would that be hard on bearings? I will say that after a two person tightening job with light-ish 30" long pry bar tension it does not seem super tight so maybe your method is not overly tight.
 

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Also I measured the distance between pulleys and it is about 2" so the Supco tool is not going to work.
 

OurTown

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I read a few articles about belt selection. They state that the "4L" belts are for fractional HP and the "A" belts are for more than one HP. What is really confusing is that one is measured by the outside length and the other by the inside plus one has three numbers and the other has two. So a 4L500 is the same size as a A48. Awesome.
 

MEP001

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I strongly recommend the cog-style belts. They last longer because they don't get as hot from bending around the motor pulley. vbeltsupply.com has Gates belts really cheap, shipping is kind of high so I order spares for everything at once.
 

I.B. Washincars

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I spent a couple of decades in the lawn and garden equipment biz. We used and sold 4L belts every day. I'm not buying that "fractional HP" bit. IIRC, it's +2 for an "A" belt and +3 for a "B".
 

MEP001

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I've seen lots of washes using A belts. They work fine, but they wear out pretty fast.
 
Etowah

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In 32 years of being in the car wash business running 5 air compressors I think we might have replaced maybe 4 belts. We replace them with the 4L500 Kevlar belt. On our pumps we run B52 belts, we've replaced a couple of those over the years. I had a spare Gates B52 belt hanging on the wall so long it deteriorated from not being used.
 

OurTown

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Our compressor runs a lot in the winter because of the blow down on the auto. It runs I'm guessing about ten minutes after every auto wash (below 35F) if the washes are not stacked. In the summer it barely runs at all.
 

Randy

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Our compressor runs a lot in the winter because of the blow down on the auto. It runs I'm guessing about ten minutes after every auto wash (below 35F) if the washes are not stacked. In the summer it barely runs at all.
I'd buy 2 - 4L500 Kevlar belts and call it good. We try to have a spare of everything on hand
 

OurTown

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Get the belt as tight as you can get it, by whatever method you can, and tighten motor. After doing that, force the belt off by raising it up over the edge of a pulley while turning it by hand. Move the motor about 1/8" and roll the belt back on...you're welcome.

Did this method today and it works excellent. (y)
 
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