Friday, March 16, 2012

DIY Diagnosis: Loose Fan Belt or Serpentine Belt Sound

We were asked why someone's car was making a high pitched squealing sound when the person first started the car, or took off from a stop.  The most common cause of the squealing sound is a loose fan or serpentine belt.

As the belt ages, the rubber will tend to glaze and crack in spots.  You can easily inspect the belt's condition with the vehicle turned off.  The glazing will cause the belt to slip, and the slippage is what causes the noise.  If the belt was recently replaced, it may just be loose and not have enough tension.  Another thing to check would be the belt tensioners, which can go bad if the car is getting old. 

If the quick checks above don't solve the problem, there may be a few more sources to check, but we recommend you take your vehicle to a qualified mechanic who specializes in your vehicle. 

Happy motoring and keep on driving!  Enjoy the St. Patrick's Day weekend!

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