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Mechanical Noise!

How can I tell if my vehicle has a timing belt noise (it’s metal) or water pump noise. It has noise at idle in park and in gear at red light. Occasional the noise is louder than normal, my wife wants me to check it out with auto mechanic. I say this old car (165K) sound OK with the noise. What are the common noises of this make and model? thanks.

The pulley on the serpentine belt’s tensioner became noisy on my similar Plymouth Voyager. I have found lots of help over the years at, which has a discussion group devoted to these minivans.

The noise could be from a dirty serpentine belt or a failing pulley bearing. Spray a little water on the belt while the engine is idling, if the noise goes away it is the belt that is noisy.

If you remove the serpentine belt and start the engine, the noise should be gone, timing chains usually don’t become noisy on these.

The noise could also be from a worm timing chain system (the guides and chain both wear), the serp belt, or even the rod bearings. Without a description of the noise, it’s anybody’s guess.

Whatever is making the noise will probably break sooner or later, then you will know for sure. It is possible you can pinpoint the noise since it occurs in park, but a mechanic should be able to do it, and give you an idea of repair costs.
Can’t tell what the noise is from here.
Could be a minor annoyance or a big ticket item, But if it were for my wifes car I would get it checked out rather than risk a breakdown.

What year I said your Grand Carqvan, and what engine does it have? If there are timing chain guides, they are often plastic and can deteriorate over time. That is especially true if they don’t have proper lubrication.

I’m with your wife on this one, ask a local, good inde auto mechanic for a diagnosis. You don’t have to let them fix it, but at least you’ll have an expert’s opinion who has actually seen the car and heard the sound up close and personal. Then you can make an informed decision how to proceed.

If you want to try something yourself, you could use a length of old garden hose as a stethoscope to narrow down the source location. I’ve used wooden dowels, broomstick handles, and steel rods in contact with the engine for that purpose too. Be very careful of course when working around an operating engine. Lots of moving parts. Very dangerous. Take appropriate precautions.

did it make noise in neutral or park? mine doesn’t, only noise in gear and stop. Running is fine and smooth.