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Squeaking noise during cold idle

Help, Advice and DIY Tutorials on Volvo's extremely popular car line -- Volvo's 1990s "bread and butter" cars -- powered by the ubiquitous and durable Volvo inline 5-cylinder engine.

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Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by m96ag » Fri Jul 08, 2016 7:30 am

Hi guys. I have an intermittent squeaking noise that occurs when the engine is cold. It sounds like it's coming from the passenger side and I have replaced several components either to try to fix the noise or for unrelated reasons. I have replaced the serpentine belt twice. The serpentine belt tensioner, the alternator for unrelated reasons, the timing belt, idler pulley and tensioner along with the water pump for unrelated reasons. I tried spinning all the pulleys with the serpentine belt off and they all feel smooth and appear to spin straight when the belt is on. Could it be the harmonic balancer?

Matt
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by kippster41493 » Fri Jul 08, 2016 1:47 pm

Sounds like a bearing of some sort, if you spin the pulley's with the belt off there is no tension on it. Adding pressure can cause old, worn out bearings to slack a little bit. If you have the chance have the hood open and listen as best you can to see if you can narrow it down. Does it go away quickly or under acceleration?
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by 101 » Fri Jul 08, 2016 2:44 pm

^^ agree with the above.

Two ideas for you:

1) Buy a cheap mechanic's stehescope and see if you can use that to narrow down the area where the noise is coming from.
2) Remove the serpentine belt and start the engine. You can safely run the engine for a bit as the water pump is rotated with the timing belt. If the noise stops, at least you know that the timing belt side of the equation is OK.

The harmonic balancer is directly attached to the crankshaft and does not have any bearings itself.
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by MadeInJapan » Fri Jul 08, 2016 4:54 pm

If none of those are the squeaky part, turn off the fan to the AC/Heat to make sure it's not the blower motor. From inside the cabin, it could sound like it's coming from the engine bay.
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by m96ag » Fri Jul 08, 2016 4:59 pm

MadeInJapan wrote:If none of those are the squeaky part, turn off the fan to the AC/Heat to make sure it's not the blower motor. From inside the cabin, it could sound like it's coming from the engine bay.
I tried it with the blower and radio off. I'm going to try running the car without the serpentine belt.
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by abscate » Fri Jul 08, 2016 10:04 pm

Get to the bottom of this before you drive this car. You can easily pull a 3000 USd job if TB fails
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by m96ag » Fri Jul 08, 2016 10:34 pm

abscate wrote:Get to the bottom of this before you drive this car. You can easily pull a 3000 USd job if TB fails
The TB was replaced along with the water pump, tensioner and idler pulley
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by Sommerfeldt » Sat Jul 09, 2016 5:37 am

On my 850, it was the tensioner for the serpentine belt. Replaced that, and discovered that about 80% of the squeak was gone - the rest is apparently the alternator, which I'm keeping at bay with some bi-weekly sprays of a little lube. :)

- S
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by m96ag » Sat Jul 09, 2016 5:56 am

Sommerfeldt wrote:On my 850, it was the tensioner for the serpentine belt. Replaced that, and discovered that about 80% of the squeak was gone - the rest is apparently the alternator, which I'm keeping at bay with some bi-weekly sprays of a little lube. :)

- S
Both of those have been replaced.
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Re: Squeaking noise during cold idle

Post by Sommerfeldt » Sat Jul 09, 2016 6:31 am

m96ag wrote:Both of those have been replaced.
That doesn't necessarily exclude them, though. ;) 101's suggestion is the absolute best - either buy a mech's stethoscope, or use a length of vacuum tubing as one, and track down where it's squeaking. There are so many moving parts there that its's really the only option.

- S
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