If you notice a squealing noise coming from the front of your vehicle, it could be from the serpentine belt. It could just be due to slippage, misalignment, or some other easy fix. The only way to make the noise go away is to either tighten and align it or replace it — so you have to understand the serpentine belt pattern to fix it. Keep reading for other serpentine belt symptoms.
- Power steering/AC not working
If the serpentine belt completely fails and breaks, then you’re going to be stuck wherever you happen to be. If it’s failing or broken, you will notice a loss of power steering, the air conditioning won’t be cold, and the engine steadily get hotter and hotter. If the power steering fails when the vehicle is moving it could cause dangerous safety issues. Preventative maintenance is one way to make sure your belt does not break while you are driving.
- Engine overheating
Since the serpentine belt helps provide power to cool the engine, a failing belt can cause your engine to overheat because the water pump will not turn. As soon as your engine starts overheating, you should stop driving because it can lead to a breakdown and cause damage to your engine. REPEAT: If your engine overheats, pull over! You don’t want to send your Volvo to an early grave.
- Cracked, worn belt
It is a good idea to physically inspect your serpentine belt each time you change the oil. Check for cracks, chunks missing, abrasions, rib separation, and damaged ribs. If you notice any of these, it is time to replace your serpentine belt.