V-belt on 2001 Audi A4 Quattro

Well I was driving to school today I noticed that the battery light came on the dash...and to my surprise the power steering starting failing. I did my research and discovered that the V-belt was the cause. Question?

Is the V-belt one of the items that I should definitely have the dealer work on or is this something I can skimp and have it done for less. What is the average price for a V-belt change (dealer vs. indie)? And how much time do I have before my care completely stops operating due to the V-belt going out? Thanks in advance!!!

Asked by for the 2001 Audi A4 Quattro
Any competent automotive technician is capable of replacing the drive belt. But you do need to take care of it immediately. A worn drive belt should have been caught and replaced as preventative maintenance, perhaps you should ask who ever replaces the drive belt to inspect the drive belt tensioner, coolant hoses and just make a list or prioritize maintenance your car needs to be safe and reliable.
Frequent engine oil changes are important on these engines as well.
The labor to replace the drive belt/fan belt is about an hour. The price of the belt could range from $35 up, some of the original equipment VW Audi belts were over $100 each.