Engine Squeaking

Easy step by step guide on how to repair automotive engine squeaking noises, this information pertains to most vehicles.

Difficulty Scale: 4 of 10

Begin with the vehicle on level ground engine off (cold) with the emergency brake set.

Step 1 - A serpentine belt is designed to supply power to the accessories of the engine such as coolant pump, alternator and power steering. When this item wears it can make a squeaking or squealing noise. Learn more

New Serpentine Belt

Step 2 - Most pulleys, including the serpentine belt tensioner are supported by a sealed roller bearing, if this bearing fails it can cause a squeaking squealing noise. Learn more

Serpentine Belt Tensioner

Step 3 - A idler pulley is used to help route the belt in a particular manner, this pulley bearing failure is common.

Idler Pulley

Step 4 - Oil is used to lubricate the internal workings of the engine to avoid damage, when the level of oil available drops to insufficient levels it can cause a squeaking noise. Learn more

Engine Oil Level

Helpful Information

Squeaking sounds are created when metal is contacting metal combined with a linear motion. Detection of a squeaking noise can be difficult, moving around the engine compartment at various levels can help find the origin of the noise.


Written by
Co-Founder and CEO of
35 years in the automotive repair field, ASE Master Technician, Advanced Electrical and Mechanical Theory.


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