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Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

 
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Old 20 Feb 2012, 11:27 am
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Default Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

My 2006 Base PT Cruiser has 95K miles on it. This winter, it has sounded 'bad/different' when starting up, particularly first thing in the morning. I can only describe it as higher pitched, with some noises that to me, sound like a belt having difficulty turning, or something like that. The higher pitch, I believe, is stemming from the RPMs being up slightly. Normally, the car comes on with the RPMs below 1000, but they will be up a little above 1000 now until they drop down. When you start to go, accelerating makes the engine 'whirr' until the engine warms up. Then you don't notice any odd noises.

Also occasionally, the car will give a tremble and the RPMs will drop a touch before bouncing back. Like it's thinking about stalling, but doesn't.

We checked for codes, but it didn't come up with any. The check engine light is not on.

We had the car inspected this weekend (passed fine). I had the guy listen to the engine to get his opinion, and he thought that 'belt noise' was coming from the area where the timing belt is. He also suggested having the cam shaft sensor looked at?

We have an appt with the dealer, and I've told them to check these things. Does an issue with the timing belt usually set off codes? How do they diagnose a timing belt problem if it hasn't actually broken yet? Can you tell by looking at it?

Any other possibilities of what it could be?
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Old 20 Feb 2012, 01:47 pm
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Default Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

It's difficult to say- The noise from the belt housing is concerning, good you're having it checked, it's time for a (nice brand new) water pump, belt, tensioner and idlers anyways
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Old 20 Feb 2012, 03:18 pm
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Default Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

Power steering can make those noises also and are close to that area. But if the timing belt is the orignal it time for that anyway.
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Old 20 Feb 2012, 06:59 pm
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Default Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

Funny you should mention the power steering. In the morning, when everything sounds it's worst, the 'whirr' noise from the engine area occurs in conjunction WITH the steering. When you are going straight, it's ok, but when you turn the wheel left or right, the whirr picks up. Then after you've driven for a few miles, the whirr noise ceases.

I will have them check the power steering too...
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Old 20 Feb 2012, 07:32 pm
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Default Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewPTCruiserInPA View Post
Funny you should mention the power steering. In the morning, when everything sounds it's worst, the 'whirr' noise from the engine area occurs in conjunction WITH the steering. When you are going straight, it's ok, but when you turn the wheel left or right, the whirr picks up. Then after you've driven for a few miles, the whirr noise ceases.

I will have them check the power steering too...
That's definitely some issues there. Read on here about a screen in the reservoir that gets stopped up and needs replaced, (the reservoir) that is. I would research this here. A lot of info on that subject.
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Old 20 Feb 2012, 07:42 pm
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Default Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

I don't know if this link will post, but I just did an online search for 'pt cruiser power steering fluid' (because it didn't show in the manual where you look to check the level), and I found this youtube video.



THIS is the noise that our PT is making at start up! This PT actually sounds more sickly than ours, but it's definitely the same noises. I will be checking the fluid level in the morning (found another video showing how to check it), and if it's low, we'll fill it and see if that makes any change. If not, I still plan on having them check the whole thing out...
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Old 21 Feb 2012, 06:42 pm
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Default Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

Checked the fluid level in the reservoir. Bone dry! Going out to get some right now.

The book calls for Mopar Steering Fluid +4 or Mopar ATF+4 Transmission Fluid. Which one should I use?

I am still keeping the appt with the dealer to have them check if the filter is clogged or anything else since it's been running without fluid for who knows how long...

EDIT: Guy at auto parts store gave my husband Valvoline ATF+4 Full Synthetic Automatic Transmission Fluid and said to use this. Has anyone used it? It says on the top 'Recommended for Chyrsler Vehicles"...

Last edited by NewPTCruiserInPA; 21 Feb 2012 at 07:01 pm.
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Old 21 Feb 2012, 08:19 pm
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Thumbs up Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

There a list at the top of this forum of approved brands but I would use it without worry. The screen is built into the reservoir. If they couldn't figer out that your power steering was your noise I'm a little concerned about there ability period. I would find a different dealer. That's just me. Keep us posted.
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Old 21 Feb 2012, 11:29 pm
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Default Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

no matter what at 95000 you need a timing belt may as well bite the bullet then you know its good i really dont thinkg there is a way to actually check the belt
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Old 01 Mar 2012, 06:03 pm
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Default Re: Does This Sound Like the Timing Belt?

I have an '05 cruiser that made the same noise. I don't know if it's relevant at all, but it made the same noise before the power steering went out. Same noise, got worse when you turned. Also, this is the 2nd time my power steering has gone out. =(
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