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How do you change the Polyrib belt?

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How to you change the Polyrib belt on a 2002 996? Are there any tips, tricks or problem areas that I should watch out for? Is it as simple as just taking the old one off and putting the new one on? Are there any special tools that are needed or that would be helpful?

Thank you in advance for your replies.


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On a 996, you first remove the airbox held in place by a 13mm bolt towards the back of the car. You also need to unplug the MAF sensor and dislodge its cable from two clips that hold it to the airbox. Once you get the air box out, use a wrench as shown to loosen the auto tensioner. Replace belt and re-assemble. Airbox has two pins at bottom that fit in holes to position it in place. Oh, you must loosen the air tube clamp that holds it in place by the throttle. Make sure that the belt is properly seated in the pulleys. Should take about 20 minutes. Good luck! Lou

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It is inspected at 30,000 miles and replaced at 60,000 miles.  Doubt it is time on a 2002.

This is how we do it on a Boxster.

Tool Pants, thanks for the picture. It may be hard for you to believe but, I am getting close to that point on my 2002. I believe I have the highest mileage 2002 911 in the world. Just over 52,000 miles and still running strong so, I should be at 60,00 pretty soon. :)

Loren and ninerguru, thank you both for your help.

This Board is a tremendous source for information.


Edited by b-man
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  • Moderators

Loren has the instructions. The idler pully has a lot of tension since it is spring loaded. If you are strong you can do it with a 27mm combination wrench. I use a 2' breaker bar and a 27mm socket for more leverage like you see in the first picture. Rotate the nut clockwise and pull the old belt off.

This is another Boxster.


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  • 3 months later...
  • Admin
Just FYI for anyone doing this, the tension pulley in my car (2002 c2 coupe) takes a 24mm tool instead of a 27mm tool.  I used a 15/16" combination wrench (which works out to 23.8mm) and it worked fine.


I'll have to double check the Carrera. I got the number from the service manual (wouldn't be the first time it was wrong). I don't remember what I used last time - just grabbed a wrench that fit :lol:

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How could the shop manual be wrong? ;) Just found out the price on the Boxster shop manual has more than tripled!

It is listed as 27mm in the 996 manual but 24mm in the Boxster manual. For all the money Porsche charges they should at least sell accurate info.

There are also errors in the Boxster shop manual.

I know it is 24 mm because I took this picture of my largest 36 mm socket and the correct 24 mm tools before I did a second belt change for a local Boxster owner. My original pictures show my 24 mm combo wrench and socket.

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Loren and others:

I was going to post a today to thank Loren for his great DIY pages. I did my own 60,000 mile service today. While this is my first 996, a '99 model, it is not my first 911. The DIYs were clear, concise and accurate. My tensioner required a 24 mm socket too. Thanks again to Loren for taking the time to create such a valuable resource for all of us.

Hank Cohn

Edited by Hank Cohn
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Hank, what you may want to consider doing as a gesture of appreciation is to make a donation to this website by clicking on the Paypal link at the bottom of this webpage. I agree with you, the information that is avaiable here is amazing.


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