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Old 12-26-2015
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Charlotte, NC
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Belt Squeals on 1998 Ford Ranger

I am hoping someone can give me some advice on my squeaky belt.

My belt squeals very loudly on a cold start and when I accelerate. I have changed the belt 3 times, changed the belt tensioner and belt tensioner pulley, radiator fan clutch, idler pulley, power steering pump, and water pump.

As you might imagine, I am running out of options.

I know the problem must lie within the serpentine belt system because the squeak is eliminated when I run a bar of soap on the underside of the belt.

The previous 3 times I changed the belt, I did clear all the pulley's off to make sure there was no residual debris.

I anyone has any other suggestions, they will be much appreciated; I am at my wit's end and this noise is extremely embarrassing.
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Old 12-26-2015
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Location: Vancouver, BC
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Squealing noise, if it is the belt slipping, will Glaze the pulley it is slipping on, this Glazing will cause more slipping and replacing the belt won't help.
Emory cloth can be used on the pulley to rough it up and remove the Glazing.

I would start with crank pulley, as that generates the torque when you change RPMs(cold start 0-1,500rpm and accelerating) so would be the most likely to be Glazed and slipping.
If you turned on AC and heard squealing then AC pulley would be first to check, if turning on headlight or heater fan caused squealing then check alternator pulley, if steering right or left cause squealing check P/S pump pulley, ect.......

Fan belts work on friction, so smooth and shiny will squeal, you can repaint after deglazing as painted surface should be rough when it dries.

Also check inside of current belt, belts can get bad spots, you will see it or them.

Also double check part number for belt, I had a Grandam that had incorrect part number listed from factory, only 1/2" longer but tensioner couldn't keep it tight.

Last edited by RonD; 12-26-2015 at 08:19 PM.
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Old 01-05-2016
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 10
Did you solve this? I have a 99 ranger same issue. Drove me nuts I changed both idler pulleys nothing. I had an electric motor with a rubber wheel in it and I would put it against all the pulleys except the crank and I would spin the pulley several thousand rpms not a sound. I finally decided it had to be the belt. I bought a can of belt dressing and sprayed the crap out of the belt. It has quieted down quite a bit but it still chirps. I was going to try a different belt but after reading you post that's probably a waste.
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Old 01-06-2016
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pull the serpentine belt off and check for free rotation of the AC and belt tensioner pulley

if the AC pulley is some what hard to turn , then the clutch is failing
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