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I have a 1996 with a 5.8 and would like to know if there are any aftermarket belt tensioners that really limit the tension on the belt so that it does not slip
 

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Did you eliminate anything dragging or otherwise being janky in your belt loop? Running a 200 amp alternator? Any other crazy accessories?

Tensioner do get tired. If there’s a chronic issue with tensioners on your truck, I’d be checking the accessories.
 

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Yo Bronco3,
  • CHECK drive belt for looseness or GLAZING and REPLACE or ADJUST tension of manually tensioned belts if necessary.
  • CHECK belt tension and ADJUST (manually tensioned belts only) if necessary. CHECK condition of drive belt and REPLACE if necessary.
  • Binding tensioner arm.
  • REMOVE drive belt from drive belt tensioner and VERIFY that tensioner arm is not frozen in position or that arm does not bind when manually moved throughout its operating range.
  • Frayed Drive Belt
  • Drive belt not seated correctly (poly-V belt).
  • REPLACE drive belt
 

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I had an issue with my tensioner. I watched a Utube video on it and will try and find it again..... but the issue was how the spring sat on the mount. The spring is suppose to ride in a groove and it tends to slips out of the groove. if you look closely at the bottom of the spring you should see where it should sit on the mount.

found it..... hope this helps

FORD 1993-96 F150 F250 F350 E150 E250 E350 Belt Tensioner - YouTube
 

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95 5.8L MAF XLT, Hedman Shorties/MF SS Y & Muff, E4OD, Man hubs, KYB Quads, 31x10.5x15, 304K miles
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Are you dealing with an old used (stretched, glazed, all cracked up on the underside) belt or a new belt? Are all your accessories turning freely (as in Fan clutch, Alt, smog pump, A/C clutch, Water pump, PS pump and anything else I might have forgotten)? They make a plastic wheel version and a metal wheel version!
I'm on my second tensioner it is the metal version and all is quiet here, with 312K miles on the engine.
 

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Motorcraft BT37 belt tenshioner and its not even that much more expesnive than aftermarket. but it sounds like you have another issue


 
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