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Is it possible to drive the car with the air-con drive belt disconnected?
The reason I ask is that I'm trying to decide whether my engine noise is coming from the compressor or not. Obviously I dont want to go replacing things without knowing the problem. I know that this way I would eventually solve the problem but it would prove unecessarily expensive.
cheers,
Mick
 

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Driving without the A/C belt on is perfectly fine. Obviously, you must keep the alternator & water pump belt on...

When inspecting the A/C drive system, pay close attention to the idler pulley (not the pulley on the compressor, but the small one mounted on the front of the engine to tension the belt). During my major service, I had replaced the bearings with a (unknowingly) lesser grade. It had lasted for about 2000 mi and eventually seized.

This doesn't mean you shouldn't inspect the compressor too. Spin it it over by hand with the compressor clutch disengaged and engaged (it may be difficult to spin over by hand while engaged, so maybe leave that test for when the belt is still on and the engine running).
 
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