Lesabre rattling noise

What you are describing really sounds like a bad tensioner assembly (as mentioned above), look at the tensioner while the vehicle is making noise to see if it is smooth or jumping around any (like it is moving from loose to tight back to loose back to tight very quickly)… but pretty smooth when not making noise…

If you have a 1/2" drive impact gun, put a socket on it and spin the alt really fast to see if it makes noise, you may have bearings going bad in it… You might have to remove it for access to the pulley nut, or get creative with a universal joint adapter (impact preferred but standard will work, best if it has a few rounds of electrical tape around it to stiffen it up)…

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I do not have a impact but I’ll check on the tensioner assembly part as you said. Thanks.

As I was thinking of the pain of changing a belt the thought of a tensioner breaking causing a broken belt sounds pretty shitty.

Can you run the engine for a very short period without any belts? If no rattle it’s something turned by the belt.

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Does your mechanic friend, if not get some/a 1/4" hex shank socket driver(s) and chuck it up in your drill and spin up the alt…

Harbor Freight has them for a few $…

Let us know what that tensioner looks like…
If it is the tensioner, those are a bit of a PIA… lol

That was established above.


Are you sure the entire mount has to be removed? I’d expect all that’s necessary is just the mount’s “through bolt”, which holds the body part of the mount to the engine part. Removing the front-mount through bolt is a relatively easy job on my Corolla, maybe 15 minutes. A little jacking is needed on the engine beforehand of course.

Not sure how knowing how to change a belt on an old Corolla will help with this person’s LeSabre.


Autos are designed largely for efficiency at the assembly plant. Not for maintenance or repairs.

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Still way better than the old 3,4,5 V belt set up where you had to pry the alt to tighten the belt, to tight and you can burn up the bearings, to loose and it will squeal, some of the PS pump belt adjustments were just stupid, not to mention some pulleys ran 2 belts and some only one, and all the belts were different lengths, no thank you, I will move a motor mount for a serp belt with auto tensioner…

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I stopped by a service shop and asked the guy to take a quick look. He says tensioner assembly is going bad. Easy fix I assume.

Flat rate is 1.5 hours…

More involved than many. I’m not a mechanic, so maybe it’s not all that uncommon. But I was surprised when I looked up the tensioner and saw the cooling connections. Weird.

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That’s how the connections are made to the heater core.


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Agree on the weird setup. I was surprised to see the heater core hoses part of it.

Three words in no particular order: buick, harmonic, balancer.

That was posted 5 days ago…


Some alternators have an overrunning clutch and they can get noisy.

It seems the question has likely been answered:

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OP’s car is way too old to have that

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I should be picking up a bracket soon.

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