When the serpentine belt on your Dodge Caravan, Chrysler Town & Country or Plymouth Voyager minivan falls off when driving in heavy rain or going through puddles, even after the belt and tensioner have been replaced and pulleys checked for proper alignment and smooth operation, you might be happy to know there's a solution.
The Gates Corporation, a major supplier to the OEM and aftermarket, has created a kits to solve this pattern failure which is commonly seen on some of the 3.0 and 3.3/3.8 liter equipped Chrysler minivans from model year 1993 to 2000.
The original belt routing and tensioner location and design might allow water, slush and snow to get between the smooth surfaces of the belt and tensioner pulley. Add some pulley misalignment or sag in the tensioner and you have the conditions for a belt to slip off. If this happens, you could become stranded, since the serpentine belt is used to run all the engine pulleys. In addition to the total loss of power steering, and alternator power, it's not likely you could drive for more than a few minutes without overheating the engine from lack of coolant circulation.
To solve this problem, Gates created a conversion kit which includes a serpentine belt that is ribbed on both sides and ribbed pulleys instead of the original smooth "back side" type.
Gates also sells replacement conversion parts individually in case you ever need to replace the belt or any of the other components.
Be sure to ask for this kit by application, since the 3.0 and 3.3/3.8 engine are shown listed with different part numbers.
If you have any trouble sourcing these kits locally, you can order online from the links below.