: Help needed before I break something...

05-13-09, 05:17 PM
Greetings all...I searched the forums but didn't get a definitive answer, so here I am. My '02 ETC has recently begun having an intermittent squeal that I attributed to the belt or pulley. My issue is this: When coasting off-throttle it doesn't squeal. It only squeals when I'm putting the gas to it. This is what's throwing me here...I'm figuring it would squeal all the time if it were a bearing in a pulley, maybe not if it were the belt. Any ideas where I can narrow this down to? I know this may be hard to diagnose on-line, but if it helps, it's making a squeak--squeak---squeak sound at idle as opposed to one solid squeal...Then it goes to a solid squeal under throttle. Ranger?....Anybody?....Thanks as always...Jim

Harry Yarnell
05-13-09, 06:04 PM
Spray some belt dressing on the running belt and see what happens. I've had squeally belt happen on a number of Northstars, and i think the worst. Spray the dressing and the noise shuts up. For a few minutes...
I replace the belt, and the noise goes away.

05-13-09, 07:51 PM
Thanks for the response Harry...I'll try the belt dressing. I'm thinking you believe that the true fix is replacing the belt? The car has 45k on it, and I can't imagine the belt having been replaced on it before. Probably time...Thanks again, Jim

05-13-09, 09:21 PM
Personally I would not use belt dressing any more. It will be temporary at best. Sounds to me like the belt is slipping (under load) which would point me to the tensioner. Check it to be sure it is supplying enough tension and is not rusted and frozen.

05-14-09, 07:46 AM
Most serpentine belts will last to 75000-100000 miles. Take Ranger's suggestion and check the tensioner and idler pulleys for binding or rattles....stick a breaker bar in the socket drive hole in the tensioner and relieve belt tension. Spin the various pulleys to see if any is noisy. Parts can be found at www.rockauto.com or call Luke, in Parts at Lindsay Cadillac, over there ---------->


05-14-09, 08:36 PM
I agree with Sub. Also, remember the water pump belt and tensioner. I think the squeak is a bad pulley bearing

If you remove either belt and turn each idler or tensioner pulley by hand, you will be able to tell which one it is. Personally, I replaced both the idler and tensioner pulleys since I had it apart, but in my case it was the idler pulley that was squeaking.

05-15-09, 11:09 PM
Thank you all for your responses. I'm going to check the pulleys and tensioners as you said. I appreciate the help...The last thing I want to do is let it go until something stupid happens. I'll let you know what I find...Jim