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Discussion Starter #1
Looking for some advice. 1996 Impala SS, 162000 miles. Loud squeal from serpentine belt system. Replaced tensioner pulley, belt, and alternator. Took belt off and ran engine, no squeal. That leaves the PS pump and AC compressor, or the tensioner itself. The PS pump and the AC compressor were both replaced about two years ago, and both seem to function well.

Any suggestions on how to isolate this. Put a rod on the AC compressor body, but could not hear anything. Cannot put anything on the PS pump to listen.

Thank you in advance for your help.
 

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Sounds like your belt is slipping. Belt tensioners require routine replacement--yours is worn out, most likely. Avoid the ones with the self-destructing plastic pulley and get one with a metal pulley.
 

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OR water pump has slow drip onto belt, making
it slip and squeal.
With engine OFF put fingers under water pump and feel for
coolant (anything wet).

Nab
 

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remove the belt and see if all the pulleys spin easy. then check the ac compressor if there is any oil on the bottom of the compressor body .. if you see any oil on the bottom of compressor then the compressor seals are failing and this will cause this also.. I had this happen ..
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Problem Solved!

After doing some additional reading and watching several youtube videos, I was able to troubleshoot the problem further. My previous checks narrowed it down to the tensioner itself (I had previously replaced the pulley on it), the PS pump, or the AC compressor. Following a tip from a youtube video, I sprayed water on the belt and the squeal went away for a short period of time. This helped rule out a bearing issue in the PS pump or the compressor. I purchase a new tensioner/pulley assembly and installed it and the squeal was gone. The tensioner must not have been keeping enough/consistent tension on the belt, causing the belt to squeal. Should have replaced the tensioner assembly from the start....

Thanks for those who offered advice and suggestions.
 

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I thought you replaced the tension-er but you only replaced the tension-er pulley bearing ..

these bind as they wear causing the tension to not be consistent.. also if the belt fly's off and the tension-er snaps back it can get damaged causing the squeaks..

when you mess with the belt do not allow the tension-er to snap back easy on the handling of it ..
 
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