squealing alternator belt

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  #1  
Old 10-18-04, 02:12 PM
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squealing alternator belt

Hi All,

I have a 1994 Dodge Caravan. The alternator belt is fine during the day, but when I turn on the headlights at night it squeals terribly. As soon as I turn off the lights it goes away. If I take off and then turn on the lights it's okay, but when I stop it starts again. The battery is about five years old. Could it be that the battery is draining the alternator? Thanks.

Israel
 
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  #2  
Old 10-18-04, 06:11 PM
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It sounds like the belt is either glazed from slipping and or age or the belt is to loose or both. When you put a load on the alternator with additional electrical demand the slipping belt squeals.
 
  #3  
Old 10-19-04, 01:52 PM
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The answer would be glazed. Because the squealing is pretty intense and will turn to smoking sometimes if nothing is done. It's not just a matter of tightening the belt. This belt was put in new two months ago, or less. The one before it smoked and snapped, and I assumed it was just a siezed alternator pulley, but this is a bit of a mystery--especially since it works so well with a light electrical load.

Israel
 
  #4  
Old 10-19-04, 03:39 PM
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Sounds like a bad belt tensioner. I assume we're talking about the serpentine belt here. They have a lot of problem with the spring tensioners.
 
  #5  
Old 10-20-04, 05:49 AM
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If it's NOT one with the built in tensioner, then it definately is time to re-tighten. New belts stretch quite a bit, and need to be retightened usually within a month of being installed.

But, keep going, and you will have to replace the belt again due to glazing.
 
  #6  
Old 10-20-04, 09:33 AM
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It's not a serpentine belt, and I am going to retighten. Nevertheless, why would the previous one (alternator) sieze up like that? Also, should I rule out the battery?

Israel
 

Last edited by elihu; 10-21-04 at 06:44 AM.
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