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Old 01-02-2021, 11:19 PM   #1
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HELP! Stuck in Albuquerque, NM

I broke down in Albuquerque on my way from Kansas City to California. Snapped a serpentine belt because of a frozen ac compressor. I was going to try to release the clutch on the pulley so that it would spin again, but I ran into a host of problems. Long story short, I think Im going to have to replace the entire compressor or at least the pulley. Problem is, no parts stores seem to be able to even find the part online. Im driving a 2003 Bluebird Mini Bird with a 6.5L diesel.

Going to try Pull-a-part tomorrow.

Is there anybody in the ABQ area that can help me at all?

Robert
510-361-1095

Thank you!!

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Old 01-03-2021, 01:33 AM   #2
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Look for Dorman part# 34158 or 4 seasons part # 88950 Both are available at autozone. I am not in new mexico but if you need parts advice my phone number is (510) 691-6757
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Old 01-03-2021, 06:03 AM   #3
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Short answer, A/C compressors are the same for 4.3 V6 / 4.8 / 5.3 / 6.0 gas V-8 and 6.6L diesel V8 from 2003+. So it doesn't HAVE to come from a diesel GM vehicle. Any GM pickup / SUV / van with a gas engine from 2003 through at least 2007-2009 should use the same compressor. Try searching car-part.com in the Albuquerque zip code, I found at least 8 possible matches, from various GM truck/SUV/van with various engines.

I can never remember whether the Micro Bird is the WorkHorse chassis and the Mini Bird is the Express / Savana chassis, or vice versa. Is yours a cutaway van cab or one of those Picasso-looking Step Van clone deals?

I seem to remember another member recently had similar issues with the same package (tried to remove a perfectly good system and could not reinstall the belt -- DUH...)

In trying to help them solve their issue, I found there is some fabrication and finagling required to make the Dorman part work. In the even that a good used compressor cannot be sourced, I've noticed most GM setups can continue with just a swap to a shorter belt, not sure if this one can or not. I did that once on exactly the same problem with a 3.1 Lumina and it worked like a charm. Compressor was seized to the point the engine could not crank. Shorter belt and it started and ran fine. Serpentine belt part #s go as follows:

Example

338K6 = 33.8 inches, 6 grooves
724K5 = 72.4 inches, 5 grooves

Some Delco numbers put the grooves first, then the inches...

6K598 for the Lumina, for example (I believe it was 59.8 inches)

On the Lumina I mentioned, I think I used a belt that was about 11 inches shorter, as memory serves, which would have been a 6K488. But look at how your compressor is mounted and how the belt routes around it from the previous and succeeding pulleys to determine if a shorter belt would bypass it without issue. If it will, measure the run up and over your compressor from the closest pulleys, subtract that number of inches from the first three numbers of your stock belt part #, and it should work.
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Old 01-03-2021, 06:15 AM   #4
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Wonder if you look up a gm truck with 6.5 and no ac if you can just route the belt around the compressor to get you home.
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Old 01-03-2021, 06:29 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
Wonder if you look up a gm truck with 6.5 and no ac if you can just route the belt around the compressor to get you home.
I was thinking the same thing with a shorter belt, but it appears the orientation of the other pulleys in relation to the compressor would cause the belt to rub against itself. Maybe a smaller water pump pulley?
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The good news is that the compressor is not unique to the diesel for '03s, any RWD truck/SUV/van with a gas V-6 or V-8 from 03-09 uses the same compressor as the diesel.
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Old 01-03-2021, 08:15 AM   #6
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Well damn cause that is what I was going to suggest was a re-wrap and shorter belt

when the smog pump went out I did this on my 302 using a shorter belt and wrapping it as a 5.0 without.

worked well, I never replaced the Smog pump actually and drove the van for many many years that way

If you can get a junk compressor even you can install it and not worry about the Air Con lines or anything.


Cheese Wagon why you gotta bring up Lumina's lol? I hated working on them
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Old 01-03-2021, 01:52 PM   #7
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Thank you everybody! I’m going to try finding a compressor today.

I believe my bus (2003 mini bird) is in a Workhorse P42 chassis. At least that’s what the VIN pulls up. It is basically a step van without a folding passenger side entrance and back door (emergency exit).
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Old 01-05-2021, 01:19 PM   #8
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THANK YOU EVERYBODY! This community is the BEST! I ended up pulling a compressor off a 2003 Sierra. I was able to leave Albuquerque Sunday night and had no issues driving my baby all the way home to the California coast! Im now sitting pretty in Pismo Beach!
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Old 01-05-2021, 03:59 PM   #9
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Good. Kick some sand for me. I haven't been to Pismo in 25 years.
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Old 01-05-2021, 04:29 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bus_A_Move View Post
THANK YOU EVERYBODY! This community is the BEST! I ended up pulling a compressor off a 2003 Sierra. I was able to leave Albuquerque Sunday night and had no issues driving my baby all the way home to the California coast! I’m now sitting pretty in Pismo Beach!
Good, I'm glad the info helped. And who knows, you may be able to get your A/C working again with an O-ring kit and some R134a, that compressor is likely perfectly okay, but it won't be for long if it's not reconnected or corked up with tape to keep the dirt and moisture out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RolesvilleMarina View Post
Cheese Wagon why you gotta bring up Lumina's lol? I hated working on them
I had a 1990 Euro 3.1 Sedan. Those weren't near as bad as the 95-99s that were basically a 4-door Monterror Carloud. I know about those -- I used to work at AutoZone and we were instructed not to replace batteries on the 95-99 model or several others where GM tried to get cute. I also know about the chintzy rear caliper parking brake setup. GM showed long ago that they needed to stop trying to think outside the box.

My 1990 was actually a really good car though. I was a taxi owner-op once and went through about a car every 12-18 months on average -- none had less than 100k at purchase. The only thing the Lumina lunched was the A/C compressor, a coolant level sensor (drove me nuts because it cut the sensor voltage and made the PCM appear faulty), and possibly an alternator, not even sure it was THAT car that needed one.

Timing chain broke at 206k (350k worth of idling and stop-and-go) and after replacement hoping it wasn't hurt, it still ran fairly well on 5 cylinders, given that a valve was embedded in a piston on the cylinder that was down. I drove that car 1000 miles in one day across 21 hours once. I had a side deal with a courier as an independent contractor. Between that and running fares when the courier had nothing for me, I drove about 60-100k miles per year.
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