• GUESTS

    If You  want access  to member only forums on FM, You will need to Sign-in or  Sign-Up now .

    This box will disappear once you are signed in as a member.

  • WE CREATE LONG TERM, MEANINGFUL RELATIONSHIPS IN HERE ... PLEASE JOIN US.

    You know what we all love...

    RECEIVE THE GIFTS MEMBERS SHARE WITH YOU HERE...THEN...CREATE SOMETHING TO ENCHANT OTHERS THAT YOU WANT TO SHARE
    When you enchant people, you fill them with delight and yourself in return. Have Fun!!!

  • 0
Sign in to follow this  
Tom7227

99 Firebird with a whine

Question

Tom7227

My kid has a 99 Firebird and there's a whine under the hood. I sounds like a bearing in the alternator but I'm not sure. She also got a check engine lite.

Could the alternator trigger the check engine lite?

Car has 135K on it. What happens in the the bearing goes? My guess was that she'd have a few miles before the battery died and the car stopped. Cash is tight and she'd like to push her luck but I'm not sure what the odds are.

Can you help?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

10 answers to this question

Recommended Posts

  • 0
Whoaru99

If it's a single serpentine belt, and the alternator bearing totally goes out, the belt could burn off or be thrown off.

If the belt burns off or is thrown off, the water pump stops and the power steering stops. Also, if the belt gets thrown off, there is a small chance of damage to radiator, etc.

Replacing or rebuilding the alternator is probably the cheaper alternative than a tow or worse (think panic when the power steering goes out on an inexperience driver).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
Scott K

If it makes the noise all the time, just pull the belt off and see if the noise goes away! If it does then it is something that the belt is hooked to, if it doesnt, then it is something else! Alt bearings dont go bad very often, usually the idler pulley, or belt tensioner is what goes bad. If it goes away when the belt is off, spin all the pulleys listen for noise, and feel for roughness.

Another thing you can do is pull the wiring off the alt, sometimes the alt it self will have an electrical whine, if it goes away then, then replace the alt.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
Jeremy airjer W

3.8 0r 5.7 liter?

This might be a long shot but turn the A/C on and see if the noise changes. Otherwise whenever I run into these types of noises I also typically remove the belt to help narrow down the possibilities.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
Tom7227

Thanks for the info. I guess the best thing is to do was the Wanderer suggests and take off the belt and see what happens. Can I run the car for a minute or so without the belt?

There's an idler arm just under the alternator and with your help I'm starting to think that's the culprit.

Thanks again.

Tom

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
Scott K

Yes a few minutes will be ok, but I wouldnt run it much more then that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
lotsofish

If it's the tensioner pulley, you can get just a new pulley for it. It can be a little tight to get off, but it's a simple swap (1 bolt) once you get it off. It's fairly cheap too.

After you take the belt off, spin each one of the pulleys and if you feel any left/right movement or "grinding" that is likely your problem.

Another thing you might want to keep in mind. The power steering pump on these GMs can be noisy. If the power steering fluid gets a little low it can really get a good whine going. Check the fluid level in the power steering reservoir before you replace anything.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
Shack

When I diagnose a hum concern, first thing I do is use a mechanics stethoscope and try to pin point what spinning device is causing the noise. Beware though, the eng. Is running and things can get caught into the belt. Some seasoned techs (I do not advocate this), apply a pry bar to the alt., water pump, power steering pump, air pump, idler pulley or tentioner and listen to the end of the pry bar. This kind of acts like a stethoscope. If you can not find the hum this way, then next step would be to remove belt and use stethoscope to pin point others area’s like the trans bell housing and such.

Good luck..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
chickeywing

135K? Ever replaced the alternator? GM units don't usually last much past 100. As was already discussed, remove the belt. You don't need to start it. You should be able to spin all pulleys by hand. If you find one that's not silky smooth, you've found it! Start with the tensioner.

TC

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
Tom7227

Thanks. I wish I had the stethoscope setup as that would make it a cinch. Can you get those at a parts store?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
SCUMFROG

Harbor Fieght Tools sells them cheap. There is one off Robert St. in West St. Paul.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  

Announcements



  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • CigarGuy
      Chad, was that on the West end?  My turn to follow you around 😀. I'll be back up Thursday night!!
    • TomWehler
      Swim 9 am this morning.  No idea on temp but Major Shrinkage.  Coolimoolio! keep on rocken!   T  
    • pikeandchester
      Spent a couple hours on German. Slow fishing, just a couple small sunnies, the boy and I where happy to be out though.  Water temperature ranged from mid 60s to mid 70s. No fresh vegetation and dirty water. Must still be running a bit behind despite the warm weather.
    • Raven77
      Got to get the first fish guts on it yesterday!
    • Raven77
      Interesting. So the sows are still in shallow? We fished 10-24' the past 3 days and have done well with a lot of 14-18" eyes using Lindy rigs and rainbows.  
    • Raven77
      Here's my new boat.  Saw probably 30 Verados in the past 3 days on the east and and west ends.  
    • redlabguy
      We had two fishing tournaments this weekend. Walleyes on Saturday and bass on Sunday. I met the bass winners today and talked to them about their walleye win Saturday. That’s right, they won both!  On Saturday, they entered the walleye tournament but just because they were on the lake to pre-fish for bass. They fished with stick baits in shallow water, looking for bass beds. As shallow as 4’. And dang if they didn’t keep catching walleyes. Big ones, including 2 over 26”. 21 lbs. in all. Apparently, they’re pretty good at finding bass, too. Big $ weekend for them!
    • BRL
      Ugly Saturday on Norwegian Bay. One Pike off of Windsock Island, nothing else much to speak of. Cold and windy but finished off with a beautiful Evening. There were a couple of good eyes caught near the north end, a 27" and a couple in the slots but most boats didn't see much. I saw 2 caught in front of the beach at Life of Riley in a matter of a couple minutes.  Sunday morning we met up with some friends and went out of Tower. Dragging bottom bouncers with minnows in 24-32' produced 11 keepers between the 4 of us, largest about 16" and lots of throw backs. Best luck just off of Priest Island. 4 hours of fishing with everyone except me pulling them in the boat until the last 10 minutes I put two in the livewell. I broke off with 10 minutes to go and was going to quit when everyone said "no, keep going!"  Glad I did cause I finished strong and redeemed myself. Never give up!
    • JBMasterAngler
      Went to Franconia on Saturday. Wind was cold and miserable! With it howling straight downstream, my options were pretty limited, so we mostly trolled up and down the main channel. Caught 1 pike, 2 smallies, and 1 white bass.
    • ANYFISH2
      Things seem to be moving right along.  Yesterday on a small Cass county lake we found sunfish and crappies in 6ft+/- ft of water with some crappies already on beds.