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Jakkal's Ramblings

The Equal Opportunity Offender


September 30th, 2011

Car people: help @ 01:26 am

I had to take the olds on a 5hr drive today. At the beginning, it was behaving pretty well. But during the drive, whenever I needed to give it a lot of gas, that mysterious whine came back. It is affected by the amount of gas or the RPMs. It gets really bad if I'm already up to speed and need to acelerate. But you can hear it wind up, but when the car shifts gears (It's an auto) the whine tones down and then rebuilds (in other words, with the RPMs of the engine).

I'm wondering if it's the alternator now.
 
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From:jaguar_warrior
Date:September 30th, 2011 07:25 am (UTC)
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Does the car have a voltage indicator, best way to find if it is an alternator. From the description, it doesn't sound like the alternator (unless a bearing is going out and making the whining). Under ideal circumstances, you should have 14-15 volts when the car is running. Is there any adverse effect on handling, acceleration, etc?
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From:shockwave77598
Date:September 30th, 2011 03:39 pm (UTC)
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Sounds like an idler wheel to me. The bearing goes out in it, and then as the engine gets hot it shrieks with the speed of the engine. After the car is off for 4 hours and it cools, the bearings don't screech as bad.

This should cost about 500$ to fix if it's the problem. Depending on teh car, you may have to remove some parts to get the belts off then replace the idler. If you are doing this, spring for new belts as you are then getting a twofer for all the money you are spending for the labor.
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From:jaguar_warrior
Date:October 1st, 2011 05:45 am (UTC)
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An idler pully on an Olds is about $60 at NAPA and the install is only about an hour of (billable) work. Given that most mechanics are under $70/hour, it shouldn't be too pricey. As for replacing the belts, there are plenty of wear indicators and they should be ok since most mechanics go over them when servicing or replacing belt-driven accessories (and Jakkal recently had the power steering system serviced).
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From:maxzilla
Date:October 1st, 2011 04:16 am (UTC)
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Considering it does it in all gears, I'm leery to blame the transmission, but it is a possibility. Just make sure the transmission fluid is full (must be checked with the car in park, engine running, and warmed up) and that it doesn't smell burnt.

Being load dependent, it wouldn't have anything to do with the belt drive or the power steering as we had pointed out way back when.

Just how loud is the whine? More noticeable with the top/windows up or down? Does it occur while the car is stationary, but revved in park?

Jakkal's Ramblings

The Equal Opportunity Offender