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By elkypro, March 21, 2015


Ive been racking my brain with this issue for months now. AT high RPM's (1500-2000 or so) when the car is put into drive or reverse there is a loud growling noise from the engine compartment. It happens when the car is still and moving. ONce the rpm's kick down to normal operating temperature it mostly goes away. Car has about 80k on it now.

I replaced one of the serpentine belts (dayco poly rib) and the tensioner about 1.5 years ago with a Dayco - 89356.

Seemed like it worked fine for a while, months. Then started getting the noise. There was no noise before this. I started replacing other parts to try and stop it to no avail. The rear mount was busted so I replaced all four with anchor brand from Advance Auto.

Other things repaired:

Cleaned throttle body and MAF sensor

Plugs and wires

Intake Manifold gasket Victor reinz MS19590

Cleaned and verified PCV valve working.

Some of these things were done to fix the Too Lean code which has subsided.

I started thinking it was the tensioner again a bit ago. I know there seems to be quite a bit of deflection in the belt. I have tried loosening the belt and putting the tensioner through its motions slowly a few times to see if there is an air bubble but that hasnt worked. When the car was running I was watching the tensioner climb up and down. I wasnt sure how normal that was though.

I'm in the windy city and well, it was pretty windy this morning.

First part is car started cold in park. Second part is car in drive .

took the belt off and checked all the pulleys for ease of movement and all were silky smooth. The idler pulley on tensioner spinned smooth but there was a little bit of play laterally. About 1/32, maybe 1/6. Not alot but I was able to move it laterally some.

ANy advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance

Replaced exhaust gasket. Did not make a difference. Im going to try to change the idler pulley next.

Tensioner moving up /down as the engine is running is pretty normal - function of being a dynamic tensioner. Growling noise could be from any of the pulleys on that side.

Could try running the car for a short time without the serpentine belt installed. Car would be OK long enough for a quick diagnosis. If the noise completely goes away - then you know it limited to something in the pulleys.

Could be from the tensioner, idler pulley, or any of the accessory pulleys that the serpentine belt touches - like the power steering pump pulley. Just spin each pulley by hand and note if there is excessive play or wobble in them, and if they don't turn smoothly.

Sometimes shaking / growling noise is from the VVTi actuator. But I'd keep that as a last resort, as it can be fairly involved to diagnose that.

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