Intermittent Belt Chirp 2000 Ranger XLT
I've seen a few other posts similar to mine but figured I'd throw mine out there for consideration as well.
My truck: 2000 Ranger XLT 3.0
I'm getting an exceptionally irritating belt chirp that comes and goes in no apparent pattern that I can discern. It does it when it's cold, warm, hot, dry, wet, you name it. But never continuously. It will go a week with no chirp whatsoever, then I get in it one morning to drive to work, or in the afternoon on the way home, start her up and there it is.
Sometimes it will chirp the whole way to my destination, other times it stops after a few miles. I've tried to figure out where the chirp is originating .. thinking it might be related to a particular pulley .. still not 100% sure. Seems like it's loudest near the top of the motor, around the idler pulley. But again, it's hard to be certain.
I've changed belts twice this year and both times the chirping went away for a longer period of time but started back eventually. I'll admit I'm mostly a cheapo and buy aftermarket parts but never buy the cheapest ones. If there are 4 different belts at Autozone, say, I'll usually buy the one in the middle of the price range.
Ideas? Should I look into the Gatorback belts (Goodyear) I'm reading about or is there a chance it's the idler pulley or tensioner? Something out of alignment or needing tightening?
As far as DIY skills I'm say slightly better than shade tree mechanic. But definitely not highly skilled.
Any help would be greatly appreciated and this is a kick-*** forum!!