Dodge Grand Caravan serpentine belt squeel


Old 12-23-09, 08:58 PM
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Location: Dayton, Ohio
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Dodge Grand Caravan serpentine belt squeel

1999 Dodge Grand Caravan
145,000 miles
3.8L engine w/air conditioning

Replaced the water pump first, it still squeeled as bad as it did with the old water pump.

Replaced the belt and it quit squeeling for a few days, then it started chirping. The chirping gradually got worse & worse until it started squeeling again. The squeeling just kept getting louder as the miles went by. This happened over a 2 week period.

Replaced the belt a second time and it acted exactly the same as when it was replaced the first time.

Any ideas on how to troubleshoot or what's the next step?
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Old 12-24-09, 06:27 AM
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Other components run off that belt, as well as tensioners. My money would be on the tensioner bearing. It won't be a "fix", but you could carefully put some lubricant in the bearing to see if it stops. If it does, you know what to do.
Old 12-24-09, 06:41 AM
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Tensioner or idler if it has one; sounds like a dry bearing maybe. It's good insurance to replace them periodically; during the water pump job would have been a good time.
Old 12-24-09, 07:05 AM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Owen Sound Ontario Canada
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How long have you had the vehicle? Have you had any trouble with the belt being thrown in the rain or snow?
Does your power steering make a growning noise?
Does you power steering leak fluid?

The 3.8s have belt problems. Take a good look from the left and from the right and straight down and see how the pulleys dont line up perfect.
Take a good look at the power steering pulley. I know it is the hardest to see but its also the most neglected.
Old 12-24-09, 09:50 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Dayton, Ohio
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I've had the van for 4 years and 81,000 miles (now has 147,000 miles).
No problems with belt throwing at all.
No problems or noises from power steering. PS pump was replaced at 120,000 miles on 2-29-2008 because of leak.
No leak from PS now.
I did notice how the pulleys don't line up very well.

the_tow_guy & chandler:
If it is a bearing, why would a new belt make the noise disappear for a few days, then start chirping & gradually get worse & worse until it gets really loud and annoying - just like my kids?

Thanks for the help & MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

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