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Why does my alternator belt squeal so much on initial start up?

Posted by njdaewoo, May 14, 2010

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  1. njdaewoo

    njdaewoo Proven Member

    162
    1
    Joined Oct 19, 2009
    Piscataway, New Jersey
    Hello all,
    My question is, whenever my car sits overnight. The initial cranking in the morning causes the alternator belt to really squeal. I replaced the belt and adjusted the new belt's tension several times but it has no effect on the morning squeal! After about 30 second or so the squeal stops and its good for the rest of the day. Is this a sign the alternator is on its way out? Thanx for any replies...
     

    406  0

    1995 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    · 2G DSM
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  2. XtsiXguyX

    XtsiXguyX Probationary Member

    12
    0
    Joined Jan 30, 2010
    sandusky, Ohio
    I have the same problem and would like to know the answer as well...
     
  3. FLASH1970

    FLASH1970 Proven Member

    880
    7
    Joined Aug 22, 2005
    Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
    How much belt deflection is there when you tighten it?
     
    FLASH1970

    1K  0

    1992 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    manual · 1G DSM
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  4. jnbracing

    jnbracing Proven Member

    59
    0
    Joined Nov 23, 2009
    EC, Massachusetts
    If the belt is good and adjusted properly, what condition are the pulleys in? Any rust on them?
     
  5. Aceman

    Aceman Proven Member

    83
    3
    Joined Apr 3, 2004
    Wonderland, Kansas

    603  0

    1999 Mitsubishi Eclipse GST
    manual · 2G DSM
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  6. marcmsj

    marcmsj Proven Member

    1,019
    11
    Joined Dec 20, 2004
    Laurel, Maryland
    Have you tried another brand belt? Another old trick would be to lightly sand the pulley and rough them up a bit, this will give more grip between the pulley and belt.
     

    527  0

    1992 Plymouth Laser RS Turbo AWD
    · 1G DSM
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    michael keenan likes this.
  7. xspsi4

    xspsi4 Proven Member

    8
    0
    Joined Sep 26, 2004
    Champaign, Illinois
    Yup this is a very common problem, It is not the belt.
     
  8. stevestevesteve

    stevestevesteve Proven Member

    295
    2
    Joined Mar 20, 2009
    Waukesha, Wisconsin
    Cheap Aftermarket Belts, or a failing alternator were my cause of it.
     

    555  0

    1997 Mitsubishi Eclipse GSX
    · 2G DSM
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  9. black_gst

    black_gst Proven Member

    1,617
    24
    Joined Jun 16, 2008
    IE, California
    because its a dsm and thats just something you have to live with :)
     

    1K  0

    1996 Eagle Talon TSi
    13.687 @ 103.210 · 2G DSM
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    miliman13 likes this.
  10. awdtalon21

    awdtalon21 Proven Member

    145
    0
    Joined Mar 4, 2007
    St. Charles, Illinois
    Lol, my wife's galant does the same thing every morning.
     
  11. rEclipserGST

    rEclipserGST Proven Member

    1,565
    49
    Joined Nov 17, 2007
    Columbus, Ohio
    Nice, agreed. My belt makes a lot less noise AFTER my water pump was replaced. But it only squeals for 15 secs or so whenever it is fully cold. But after that, its good to go all day.

    BUT before the water pump replacement, I can honestly say it was embarrassing when my baby would howl for a good 2 minutes.
     

    Street Build 642  25

    1995 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    187 whp · 200 lb/ft · 2G DSM
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  12. mistagst

    mistagst Proven Member

    152
    0
    Joined May 1, 2009
    Elgin, Illinois
    i have been having the same problem as well i replaced my alternator and it squeaks at every startup unless warm. at night it is the worst i turn it on sqeaks for 15sec very loud then when i turn on my headlights the sqeak does not go away till i turn them off then on again i dont know what could be the problem with mine
     

    367  0

    1999 Mitsubishi Eclipse GST
    · 2G DSM
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  13. DSM1G90

    DSM1G90 Proven Member

    4,840
    60
    Joined Apr 6, 2008
    Nampa, Idaho
    Tighten the belt up since the ALT is under load when motor has just started. Belts do stretch after time.
     

    1K  0

    1990 Plymouth Laser RS Turbo
    · 1G DSM
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  14. dannyd97gst

    dannyd97gst Proven Member

    173
    0
    Joined Mar 9, 2007
    DURHAM, North Carolina
    Same thing happened to mine, even after a harmonic balancer install. In my case the alternator itself was loose causing the belt to ride slightly out of alignment. Tightened the alternator and tightened the belt banjo string tight, no more noises.
     
  15. DSM1G90

    DSM1G90 Proven Member

    4,840
    60
    Joined Apr 6, 2008
    Nampa, Idaho
    ..but, not too "banjo string" tight, for that'll raise havoc with the ALT and WP bearings.

    All you need is a 1/4" deflection when you push down on the belt itself with your finger inbetween two pulleys. Or, if you can twist the belt more than a quarter turn between two pulleys, it's too loose.

    Good luck-DSM
     

    1K  0

    1990 Plymouth Laser RS Turbo
    · 1G DSM
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  16. michaelsdsm

    michaelsdsm Probationary Member

    7
    0
    Joined Sep 20, 2012
    Norridge, Illinois
    yea mine squeaks when i start it up most of the time, also squeaks sometimes when i shift gears?

    94 eclipse
     

    216  0

    1994 Mitsubishi Eclipse GST
    · 1G DSM
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  17. bluehaze420a

    bluehaze420a Probationary Member

    49
    0
    Joined Apr 5, 2013
    bullhead city, Arizona
    I have this problem too only with a cold start also. I have an unorthodox pulley and high compression motor. When i shift into second on a hard pull it squeals and i haven't been able to figure it out.
     
  18. Gsxhero

    Gsxhero Proven Member

    84
    1
    Joined Jul 7, 2012
    santa rosa, California
    well i used the bar of soap trick on 2 cars(touch a bar of soap to where it rubs for a second or two). first car it made the belt quiet for as long as we owned the car. second car it made it quiet for about an hour then it started sqeeking again. Its kinda ghetto but sometimes it helps. I wonder if they have anything in the auto parts store that would work better then soap. maybe belt conditioner...

    heres a youtube vid [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDzVDNdcQiM[/ame] but since the belts i did it to where easy to get to i did it with the car running... just a touch
     

    Street Build 350  0

    1991 Mitsubishi Eclipse GSX
    000.0 whp · 000.0 lb/ft · 1G DSM
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  19. kayosfrawg

    kayosfrawg Proven Member

    39
    1
    Joined Feb 8, 2013
    Gainesville, Florida
    Mine started the squeaking on cold start due to oil getting on the pulley/belt when my dipstick shot out. Might want to clan the pulley and change the belt. Worked on my first DSM :)
     
  20. Dsmkauai

    Dsmkauai Proven Member

    3,928
    410
    Joined Feb 20, 2010
    Kauai, Hawaii
    My 95 had a this problem for the longest time also. What I discovered atleast on my engine was. The bracket that holds the lower main bolt for the alternator got really egged out. To the point the alternator moved back and forth with the bolt in place. Even tight I can imagine this would cause stress and possibly throw the belt alignment off abit. Anyway what I did since this was my problem. I drilled out the hole for a bigger bolt, got a new oem belt and the squeak went away. Just another possibility it could be a number of issues and is a early warning sing for something else failing.
     

    Drag Race Build 593  2

    1995 Eagle Talon TSi
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM

    6K  0

    1991 Mitsubishi Galant VR-4
    13.7 @ 101 · Galant VR-4

    4K  0

    1995 Mitsubishi Eclipse GST
    12.408 @ 112.930 · 2G DSM

    2K  0

    1998 Eagle Talon TSi
    manual · 2G DSM
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  21. 1990AWD

    1990AWD Supporting VIP

    1,464
    16
    Joined Apr 27, 2009
    Langham, SK, Canada
    The reason a belt squeals is because its too loose. Obviously if you're belt is worn out, your pulleys are misaligned, or a bearing is seized that will cause it to squeal, but 95% of the time, it just needs tightening. End of story.

    p.s. NEVER use belt dressing, it doesn't work!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 10, 2014
  22. DSM4me44

    DSM4me44 Proven Member

    708
    1
    Joined Jul 2, 2004
    Medina, Ohio
    This is spot on. Exactly the problem in a lot of DSMs.
     

    560  0

    1995 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    manual · 2G DSM
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  23. bkiel

    bkiel Proven Member

    31
    0
    Joined Mar 22, 2013
    Tomah, Wisconsin
    Same here, the colder it gets the longer it squeals. Sometimes through third gear
     
  24. Turbosnatch

    Turbosnatch Proven Member

    30
    0
    Joined Feb 13, 2013
    England, Europe
    Mine just does it intially on start up for about 5 seconds max, unless i turn the heating on then it squeals a little longer
     
  25. Pale Horse

    Pale Horse Proven Member

    56
    0
    Joined Oct 8, 2011
    Williamsport, Pennsylvania
    Mine used to squeal quite a lot too. I just kept tightening the belt until it finally went away. Strange though there was VERY little belt deflection to begin with. I worry now they are too tight, but it's better than the squealing and carrying on. That sh** is embarassing.
     

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