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RoopsPhoto.com
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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 2003 Honda Accord 2.4L - 4 cylinder car. I bought, what was supposed to be a OEM Bando Belt, which according to the Bando website, it is the same belt that Honda uses: Genuine Honda 38920-RAA-A03 A/C Compressor Belt with zero differences. I was expecting the packaging to be the same as the one on Amazon: Amazon.com: Bando 7PK1781 OEM Quality Serpentine Belt: Automotive


On the amazon page, it says "Bando has one line of belts for both OEM applications and the aftermarket. The same belt the manufacturer specifies and installs is the same belt sold in the aftermarket"

The packaging looks different.
I want to know if this is a counterfeit?
Is also the EXACT same belt that is sold to Honda for the Honda OEM belt?

EDIT:
Okay. I got my answer. Bando responded to my email. It is genuine Bando. I am happy now :)
This is a Bando belt. This belt was provided by a third party vender for Amazon.
At Bando we call the a Federated Bando sleeve. It came from one of our Distributor that belong to the Federated Group.
Be assured that this is a premium Bando Belt.
If there are any further questions fell free to give me a call.
Thank You,
Robert
 

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RoopsPhoto.com
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Discussion Starter #3
Does that even matter as long as the belt is good and is the right length?
It matters to know if it's genuine and it will last the desired time period of a genuine belt. I have bought after market before and always hated how quick they wear out and start making noise compared to OEM.
 

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Roll Tide!
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^ no it doesn't. especially since you here instead of on the phone with the vender and/or manufacturer. last time i checked, buying a belt from the manufacturer of an oem belt is not the same as buying an oem belt.

it's funny how people want oem but weasel out of buying the eom part over less money than they blow on fast food after a night out clubbin'.

counterfeit belt, lol.
 

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RoopsPhoto.com
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Discussion Starter #5
^ no it doesn't. especially since you here instead of on the phone with the vender and/or manufacturer. last time i checked, buying a belt from the manufacturer of an oem belt is not the same as buying an oem belt.

it's funny how people want oem but weasel out of buying the eom part over less money than they blow on fast food after a night out clubbin'.

counterfeit belt, lol.
Thanks for making superb assumptions. I have respected your other posts on here jimijam. This one is plain rude though. I have emailed the manufacturer already, but haven't gotten a response. The forum is a wealth of information, and this post will help others after I find my answer. I have never heard of Federalted auto parts. My previous accord I went straight honda brand on everything vital. After reading on here and doing heavy research for about a week, on the Bando brand belt, it seems to be OEM exact without honda name. That is what everyone here says. I saw a certain exact belt that everyone recommends as the exact belt bag Honda rebrands as their own. I bought this expecting it to look like the one that everyone bought, but now it looks different with another company name on it. China can copy entire iPhone. They can copy anything.

My previous accord, the PS belt and the alternator belts were not as big of a deal. With this generation accord, I can ruin my engine trying to make it home with a busted belt.

I do like OEM quality for my belt, and if this is not, then I'll be dissappointed and know not to buy this one again. I would not buy the gaterback belt or their other alternatives. This Bando is highly recommended on this forum.
 

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Roll Tide!
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i get it, but we are only talking about a difference of a little more than a dollar per month over the span of the 12 month warranty. and if it lasts longer than that, that's some good gravy, man.

recommend you throw your old belt in the trunk along with the belt tool after you install whatever new one your decide to go with so you don't ruin your engine. i'd hate to read about a broken serp belt causing a ruined engine.
 

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Where did you get the idea that aftermarket belts make noise quicker thank OEM?

I had an OEM serpentine belt from Honda when I had them do my first timing belt job. I was at the dealer, and the dealer put it on, the belt was direct from their parts department, which is distributed but who knows who. It started squealing after 40000 miles. Does it matter that the serpentine belt is OEM? NO, DOES NOT MATTER AT ALL. I then used Gates, and now I'm using Goodyear Gatorback. It's a belt. As long as it doesn't snap, it's fine to me. Just make sure you don't get a counterfeit from China, that's all you should care. And I'm Taiwanese.
 

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My OEM Bando belt last 166K and I only changed it because I felt sorry for it. It was not out of specs and had no cracks. It now has the easy life, in my trunk.

I purchased the same Bando Belt from Amazon on that link you posted. I believe the packaging was the same as seen in the picture on Amazon. As you know though, Amazon uses multiple sellers for the same product. Federated seems to be a big company Federated Auto Parts ...big enough to have Bando rebranded pkg. The belt has "Made in the USA" stamped on it. China is usually too proud to not tell you they made it. I think it's real.

You spent roughly 20 bucks for it. I say throw it on and see how long it lasts. It's not worth worrying over. I spent more than that on two prickly pear margaritas the other night... and the chick that drank one wasn't even attractive.

PS: Serpentine belt does not ruin your engine. Once it breaks, lights should go off to tell you all is not well. You will lose power steering, AC, Alternator charging and water pump. A stationary water pump will make the engine overheat, but again, it should already be obvious that you need to stop.
 

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My OEM Bando belt last 166K and I only changed it because I felt sorry for it. It was not out of specs and had no cracks. It now has the easy life, in my trunk.
That is a monster belt and you got lucky. Must be Atlanta weather. My OEM Bando belt was squealing like mad especially in humid weather, after only 40k miles. It was way out of spec, I checked the mark on the auto tensioner.
 

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RoopsPhoto.com
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Discussion Starter #12
The packaging looks different.
Okay. I got my answer. Bando responded to my email. It is genuine Bando. I am happy now :)

This is a Bando belt. This belt was provided by a third party vender for Amazon.
At Bando we call the a Federated Bando sleeve. It came from one of our Distributor that belong to the Federated Group.
Be assured that this is a premium Bando Belt.
If there are any further questions fell free to give me a call.
Thank You,
Robert
Sorry if this was a silly question. I have never heard of Federated Auto parts before.
 

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Roll Tide!
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glad you got it sorted and hope it doesn't go out in 20k miles ;)

btw, i've been running goodyear gatorbacks on several different vehicles for the past 10 years and have never had a problem or any noise from them. in fact, i yanked a noisy toyota belt a couple years back and put on a silent gatorback, only to have the dealer put on another toyota belt when they did my t-belt/h2o service this spring; i miss my quite gatorback because the brand new toyota belt squeals like a mofo. i'll put another gatorback on in the next few weeks. ;)
 

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RoopsPhoto.com
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Discussion Starter #14
As a follow up, I was questioning whether my belt needs to be changed or not. I found the following information during my search.

All my research online says that the belt will show cracks when it is bent backward, or it will start becoming noisy.
Okay. I found my answer online on the Gates website:
Gates Use these Tech Tips to learn how to diagnose EPDM belt wear

Neoprene Belt Wear vs EPDM Belt Wear

While it's hard to tell neoprene and EPDM belts apart visually, EPDM belts far outlast and outperform their predecessors. Neoprene belts have a life expectancy of 50-60K miles, and as they wear out, cracks and chunk-outs will occur. EPDM belts rarely show these symptoms, even at very high mileage.

As EPDM belts age, they gradually lose rubber material similar to the way a vehicle’s tires wear out. Over a period of 100,000 miles, a belt can lose up to 10% of its rib material. While this may not seem like a lot, the consequences can be significant.
When EPDM serpentine belts lose material in the valleys of the ribs, the space between the ribs widens without the ribs getting shorter. As more material is lost, the pulleys ride deeper into the belt valleys resulting in slip, noise, and hydroplaning.


With sufficient material loss, the pulley ribs “bottom out” in the valleys and ride on the belt cord. This reduces the surface contact on the valley sides where the traction is generated. Wear also increases the effective belt length, lowering the tension in the system, which also reduces traction.
 

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I had NO chunks missing or cracks showing with the OEM belt bent backwards after running it for over 60000 miles. But the belt was stretched. Even though it appeared to be within spec according to the mark on the auto tensioner, it was clearly not in spec. A good test to do is to spray water onto the inner side of the belt, if the noise goes away, then the belt is the problem. You cannot go by manufacturer's recommendation, because sometimes environmental and driving conditions are factors.
 

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RoopsPhoto.com
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Discussion Starter #16
I had NO chunks missing or cracks showing with the OEM belt bent backwards after running it for over 60000 miles.s.
I think you mis read my post. My belt looks BRAND NEW, with 105k miles. I have zero cracks when bent backwards and zero noise. This is why I started to question, do I really need a belt change. Then, after reading up about this on the Bando website, I realize that a worn belt will still look brand new to the naked eye.

When the belt gets worn, the ridges widen. It is very hard to see this with the naked eye. If you read the bands site, or the parts I quoted, you will understand how these belts wear out but still look brand new. The finally tell tale sign I have that my belt is definitely slipping is because 2 weeks ago, my alternator/battery light has been flashing on and off. The website says that this is one of the symptoms of a worn belt. I compared the grooves of the new belt to the old belt and the old belt definitely has wide grooves. The sides of the groves is what grab on to each pulley to supply grip.

These new EPDM belts no longer crack or break. They just wear the grooves. Eventually, your car start going bokers and you have no idea why.


Brando makes a tool that you can get for free to test for a worn belt. They also have a phone app. I tried the phone app very unsuccessfully. I tried it on my car belt and on my brand new belt and no matter what I do, it won't read the image properly.
 

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I think you mis read my post. My belt looks BRAND NEW, with 105k miles. I have zero cracks when bent backwards and zero noise. This is why I started to question, do I really need a belt change. Then, after reading up about this on the Bando website, I realize that a worn belt will still look brand new to the naked eye.

When the belt gets worn, the ridges widen. It is very hard to see this with the naked eye. If you read the bands site, or the parts I quoted, you will understand how these belts wear out but still look brand new. The finally tell tale sign I have that my belt is definitely slipping is because 2 weeks ago, my alternator/battery light has been flashing on and off. The website says that this is one of the symptoms of a worn belt. I compared the grooves of the new belt to the old belt and the old belt definitely has wide grooves. The sides of the groves is what grab on to each pulley to supply grip.

These new EPDM belts no longer crack or break. They just wear the grooves. Eventually, your car start going bokers and you have no idea why.


Brando makes a tool that you can get for free to test for a worn belt. They also have a phone app. I tried the phone app very unsuccessfully. I tried it on my car belt and on my brand new belt and no matter what I do, it won't read the image properly.
Are you aware of this???

 

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RoopsPhoto.com
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Discussion Starter #18
Are you aware of this???
Yes, but I am inquisitive by nature. I do not take things at face value. I like to know how things work and why they work. The belt looked fine, felt fine, felt flexible. Why do we change then? I did not get my answer until I found the Bando's website explaining how it works. That's why I did physics. I like to know why things are the way they are. I spent a lot of time learning about my 94 Accord, I knew it like the back of my hand. Now, I am learning about the 03 Accord.
 

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Car so nice, bought twice
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I think you mis read my post. My belt looks BRAND NEW, with 105k miles. I have zero cracks when bent backwards and zero noise. This is why I started to question, do I really need a belt change. Then, after reading up about this on the Bando website, I realize that a worn belt will still look brand new to the naked eye. .
Yeah, a lot of people don't realize that with modern belts you can't just look at them and tell when they're dying.

IMO it's something that should be treated like sparkplugs - replace on an interval. I'm a proponent of spending more up front and replacing something too early than waiting for a catastrophic failure and potentially having an even bigger repair bill.

Re: the OP, I've seen "parts store" branding on replacement parts before. My Moog end links said CarQuest on them because I guess RockAuto bought up CarQuest's stock. It's still the same part as one that doesn't have that label on it.
 

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Yeah, a lot of people don't realize that with modern belts you can't just look at them and tell when they're dying.
You can if you look at the belt tension gauge.

Yes, but I am inquisitive by nature. I do not take things at face value. I like to know how things work and why they work. The belt looked fine, felt fine, felt flexible. Why do we change then? I did not get my answer until I found the Bando's website explaining how it works. That's why I did physics. I like to know why things are the way they are. I spent a lot of time learning about my 94 Accord, I knew it like the back of my hand. Now, I am learning about the 03 Accord.
I have zero cracks when bent backwards and zero noise. This is why I started to question, do I really need a belt change. Then, after reading up about this on the Bando website, I realize that a worn belt will still look brand new to the naked eye.
Cool. I was just wondering if you had cast that naked eye toward the belt tension indicator, as it would have told you that the belt was indeed worn even before the website, the phone app and the special Bando tool would. It is always gauging the circumference of the belt.
 
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