Originally Posted by 95neongirl
come on I know someone has some suggestions for me to check out when i get off work!
Okaaay... weelll... The last time I had a problem that I _thought_ was the tensioner, it actually turned out to be bad bearings in the alternator.
When the engine was idling, I could see the tensioner jumping around every now and then, with the belt jumping along with it, and I thought, "Ah-ha! I'll replace the tensioner and life will be perfect again!" But the dealer said, No, it'* the alternator, and since (1) they were offering to replace the alternator for free under warranty, and (2) alternators cost more than tensioners anyway, I figured I had nothing to lose by letting them replace the alternator. Lo and behold, that was it.
So I'd suggest that Step 1 would be to remove the belt (not that hard to do, really, as long as you have the right socket and a breaker-bar handle or torque wrench to get enough leverage), and see which component really has the slop in it: the tensioner, the alternator or something else.
P.*. Be sure you're pushing on the tensioner (in order to release the drive belt) in the right direction. For example, the alternator belt on my '93 SSEi is loosened by turning the hub of the tensioner belt _clockwise_, not counterclockwise. It'* got a honkin' big spring in it so you need to push hard to back it off, which is why you want as long a handle as possible on the socket.