Why you may have Noise from your Serpentine Belt on Acceleration (+Suggested Fixes)

You hear that distinct, irritating, and possibly embarrassing noise from the front of the car as it picks up speed, forcing you to cut back on the acceleration.

It may even be there when the car engine is running at constant speed or only when you step on the gas.

Whichever it is, you want the car or truck engine running smoothly once again right away like it is supposed to.

What might be the problem? Where do you look and are there any particular checks you may be able to do yourself?

This post list the common reasons why there might be that annoying squeaky sound from your serpentine belt, what checks you may be able to do to confirm if it is indeed the problem, and fixes that can help you solve the problem.

Note: This is only intended to start you off. Always consult a qualified auto mechanic.

Reasons why the Serpentine belt makes noise when Accelerating

If your serpentine belt makes that annoying squeaky sound as the car engine runs, it may be because of:

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#1. The serpentine belt may be on its way out. When was the last belt change? Inspect the belt for any cracks, or tears along its length. If it has signs of wear and tear, then replace it. Check also the belt tension.

#2. The belt may not be properly aligned with the pulley. If the new belt is squeaking, it may be that it is not fitted properly within the pulley ridges which can cause the squeaky noise and eventually break.

Confirm that you’ve fitted the serpentine belt with the correct part number.

#3. Idler pulley and or bearings may be damaged. Damaged bearings can cause squeaking of the pulleys. A quick check you can do if you have the skills to do so safely, remove the serpentine belt and spin the pulley(s) over which the belt passes all the while checking if they running smoothly and if there are any noises.

This may provide a clue if indeed it is a case of a damaged pulley.

You may also be interested in what a noisy serpentine belt sounds like.

How to Confirm that it is a Serpentine Belt problem

If you have the squeaky sound, it is possible that it is coming from somewhere other than the serpentine belt. To confirm that it is indeed a serpentine belt, you can do the following:

What you need:

  • A spray bottle
  • Make a solution of soapy water – you can use a dishwasher solution

With the engine running, spray the soapy water solution under the ribbed section of the running serpentine belt. Does the squealing stop? If so, then it is indeed an issue with the serpentine belt.

What Serpentine Belt noises sound like

The serpentine belt can make a squeaky type of sound, somewhat similar to a grinder cutting a piece of metal.

Final Thoughts

That noisy squeak from under the hood as the car accelerates may be caused by a damaged, misaligned, wrongly fitted belt (if it is a new belt) or damaged tensioners. Always confirm that it is indeed serpentine-related as a first step before working through the various reasons why it may be squeaking.

Hope this helps!

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