belt squeal on cold days

bmike

Thread Killer
Joined
Jan 3, 2002
Location
central CT
TDI
1998 Jetta - sold, 2010 A3 - sold
These last few cold days, approximately 1 minute after startup I get a 5 second belt squeal from the engine. It goes away and the car is running fine otherwise, any thoughts....98 A3 Jetta 50K miles
 

bowlerman

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 31, 2001
Location
medford, NJ
TDI
2001 jetta tdi black
what belt? but doesnt matter here's the trick to get rubber to last ARMORALL! spray it on belt as its running
 

bmike

Thread Killer
Joined
Jan 3, 2002
Location
central CT
TDI
1998 Jetta - sold, 2010 A3 - sold
Lets see Armorall, some of the most slippery stuff I have ever seen, sprayed on the accessory belt.....Hmmmmmm......I don't think so
 

Boundless

BANNED
Joined
Jan 3, 2001
Tighten the power steering and serpentine a bit. Prolly the power steering.

[ January 25, 2003, 11:27: Message edited by: Boundless ]
 

danmiddle

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 24, 2000
Location
Minneapolis, MN
This observation has popped up before. One theory, which I may or may not buy into, is that it isn't the belt at all, but rather the fresh air fan under the hood just in front of the passenger side. Something with the expansion/constriction of the fan due to the cold??
 

bigrichard

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2000
Location
MD in my wood shop
TDI
B4V GLX 1996; sold the Jetta PD Wagon 2004
I get 3-4 minutes of squeeking noise on cold mornings too. I've always thought that it was from the belt area. I've snugged up the power steering belt but no change. I haven't noticed excessive belt glaze or abrasion. So I'm not positive that it's from the belts.
 

RIP TDI

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Feb 16, 2000
Location
Santa Barbara, CA
TDI
'15 GSW SE 6MT...... '01 Golf GLS 5MT.... '96 Passat Variant....
Here's how to determine if this is caused by a weak serpentine belt automatic tensioner spring unit. After starting a stone cold engine, immediately check to see if the tensioner roller is jumping up and down with the engine idling. If so, its spring has lost tension. If in good shape, it should be absolutely motionless. Replacement is the solution, though the problem will recur in a couple of years.
 

Lance Allison

Requiesce In Pace October 20th, 2019
Joined
Jul 28, 1999
Location
Central Illinois
TDI
98 Jetta, Classic Green
I have this problem as well, but it has happened in cold weather since the car was new.

Recently, I installed a new serpentine belt roller and tensioner, new serp belt, and new PS belt...the noise is still there for maybe 1-3 minutes after a cold startup. The tensioner had really started bouncing around quite a bit, so I went ahead and replaced it. It no longer moves, but the noise hasn't improved either.

The other A3 Jetta I'm very familiar with makes the same noise for about the same duration.

I'd love to know how to get rid of the noise, but I've learned to live with it. It's a minor annoyance that lasts for a short time, but I don't think it should be there.
 

dboard9

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 28, 2002
Location
Sacramento, CA
TDI
Passat B4 TDI 1996 White
My '96 Passat does the same thing for the first few blocks when cold... the belt tensioner apppears to have good spring tension, but it's shaft (that runs through that big alternator mount casting) is loose due to worn bushings (one is hanging out), allowing the tensioner pully to jump around. Since you can't replace the bushings, I priced a new assembly at a dealer, it's $275.20. I proceeded straight to a VW dismantler Roseville, CA and bought one with no discernable wear for $50.

I'll let you know if it solves the squeakies.
 

Lug_Nut

TDIClub Enthusiast, Pre-Forum Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 20, 1998
Location
Sterling, Massachusetts. USA
TDI
idi: 1988 Bolens DGT1700H, the other oil burner: 1967 Saab Sonett II two stroke
My serpentine tensioner has good tension from the rubber blocks. The jumping of my tensioner is due to the idler wheel center bearing not being concentric with the idler circumference, a manufacturing issue that put the bearing off center.
My squeal is from the alternator itself. It ceases when the after-glow phase ends. I can get the squeal to return by switching on the rear window demister and turning the cabin fan on highest speed. It happens only when the temperature of the alternator is sub-freezing. If I heat the alternator pulley area with a hot air gun prior to starting, no noise occurs. It's been this way for three years now, so siezure is only a remote possibility.
 

GMCpatrick

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2001
Location
Atlanta
Originally posted by Jonathan Bartlett:
My squeal is from the alternator itself. It ceases when the after-glow phase ends.
<font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">I figured this was the source of my morning belt squeal also. High alternator load to replace the battery's cold morning start loss and power the glow plugs. Usually goes away by the time I back out of the garage. Replacing the belt tensioner last year helped, but didn't stop it entirely.

FWIW, my motorhome's alternator does the same thing on a cold morning.

Patrick
 
Top