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Need help, driving across the country tomorrow

This is a discussion on Need help, driving across the country tomorrow within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; Hey all, I have a 1999 Trans A4, 63k miles, with the infamous belt spueel coming into play when the ...

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    Need help, driving across the country tomorrow

    Hey all,

    I have a 1999 Trans A4, 63k miles, with the infamous belt spueel coming into play when the car is wet, but then after it drys out and runs a bit, the squeel goes away. Its been doing this for years but only after a good car wash or a soaking rain. Like I said though, it always goes away.

    I've never had the serpentine belts replaced, the car is unmodded except for a K&N filter and a Borla Exhaust. Do I need to have these belts replaced before I leave? Please let me know your thoughts.

    Thanks!!

  2. #2
    ʢ ൧ ൨ ൩ ൪ ൫ ൬ ൭ ൮Ր Ց Ւ Փ Smittro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 99ta92rt View Post
    Hey all,

    I have a 1999 Trans A4, 63k miles, with the infamous belt spueel coming into play when the car is wet, but then after it drys out and runs a bit, the squeel goes away. Its been doing this for years but only after a good car wash or a soaking rain. Like I said though, it always goes away.

    I've never had the serpentine belts replaced, the car is unmodded except for a K&N filter and a Borla Exhaust. Do I need to have these belts replaced before I leave? Please let me know your thoughts.

    Thanks!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smittro View Post
    Yes...
    ...and Welcome to LS1.com..
    Do you think I can at least make it out to where I'm going and then have it replaced? Or do you really think this could bust on me on the way? I've never ran the car for more than few hours consecutively at any given time. I only remembered it because it's a little damp here today, car is garaged kept and dry tomorrow. Thanks for your input.

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    Moderator Cutlass's Avatar
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    If the belts are showing cracks on the groovy side, then you should replace them sooner than later. Otherwise you should make it. Here's a cracked belt

    Also I recommend using a brand of belts called Gatorback. A few parts stores carry them, but some don't.

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    expensive tires az gt eater's Avatar
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    And keep the old ones under the spare tire, Just in case.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cutlass View Post
    If the belts are showing cracks on the groovy side, then you should replace them sooner than later. Otherwise you should make it. Here's a cracked belt
    Click for full size
    Also I recommend using a brand of belts called Gatorback. A few parts stores carry them, but some don't.
    I just went and looked at mine (belt), there are cracks but not as severe as the picture. I really appreciate the input. I'm wondering if it would hold up all the way to phoenix from chicago? I've never had a real problem, but I've never run the car for more than a couple hours at a time.

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    Single Malt rbob93's Avatar
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    $30 worth of belts & 30 minutes of your time.....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cutlass View Post
    Also I recommend using a brand of belts called Gatorback. A few parts stores carry them, but some don't.
    Quote Originally Posted by rbob93 View Post
    $30 worth of belts & 30 minutes of your time.....
    These.

    The overworking of the belt on this long road trip could be its breaking point. Very simple to do, most autoparts stores have free tool rental to make the job even easier. I'd also really reccomed the gatorback as well, don't go cheap on a belt.

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    Gatorback FTW!! I've used one on all my cars for the last few years and love them. I highly recommend you change the belt before you leave. Nothing worse then being on the side of the road when you could have prevented the whole ordeal. 30 minutes of your time could save you hours and hundreds of dollars
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    ʢ ൧ ൨ ൩ ൪ ൫ ൬ ൭ ൮Ր Ց Ւ Փ Smittro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 99ta92rt View Post
    Do you think I can at least make it out to where I'm going and then have it replaced? Or do you really think this could bust on me on the way? I've never ran the car for more than few hours consecutively at any given time. I only remembered it because it's a little damp here today, car is garaged kept and dry tomorrow. Thanks for your input.
    I would'nt try it.. Everything relies on that belt..

    If it breaks or gets kicked off going down the road you my not notice right away and then become stranded..

    The car will run for a short while on battery only but once the voltage drops enough the car will shut down and you will NOT be able to restart it..

    @ that point you'll be needing a flat bed to move the car...

    For your troubles the car may also over heat, as without the serp belt the water pump will not be running.

    Over heating an all aluminum engine is'nt the best thing for it and could permanately damage the engine..

    Just my .02..

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    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    also, the "infamous" belt squeal isn't so infamous......I'd replace the belts and if it continues to do it I'd find out what's causing it and fix it. Shouldn't be doing that.

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    All you will need is a 15mm socket and ratchet or an offset wrench IOT change it. Like everyone has stated $30/10 mins of time is worth it over the head ache of trying to fix it on the side of the road. Like Orion also posted if it still makes noise the next two couplets are the A/C belt or both (Serpentine/A/C) tensioners.. I don't think the pulleys are starting to go because of how low your mileage is. Over 100k then I'd start looking at that.

    Sarge and Orion also showed me an easy way to check by using a broom handle cut off about 3 ft in length. As your engine is running touch the pulley and try to listen to it by putting it close to your ear. It sounds like a prank but it's not. The one that sounds the loudest is the problem.

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    Senior Member JayTA98's Avatar
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    is most likely that your belt is old. Replace it before you leave. This will save you from wasting time during your trip if it breaks. If you never done it you should replace it as preventive maintenance. Check your tensioner as well. If the pulley wobbles or is making noise replace it as well.

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    Thanks for all the input guys, I GREATLY appreciated it. I would up just buying 2 airline tickets that morning and was in Phoenix by mid-afternoon. I just got back yesterday. I thought it would have been a neat road trip as I've already flown to my folks house out there more than a dozen times already. The belts will be replaced very soon. Thanks again all.

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