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Screechin' Squealin' and Howlin'

This problem has been happening on and off to my a car for about a year. When I start my car I’ll begin to hear this screeching sound coming from under the hood. Sounds god awful. When I go to drive it the sound get’s worse, especially with acceleration. However, after I make a turn or hit the “sweet spot” it goes away. This usually happens at night, which makes me think it’s some sort of water/condensation building up on the serpentine belts which are rubbing together creating friction of some kind. Today however was unusual because as I parked my car at school I accidentally left the head lamps on and the battery died. Got someone to jumpstart me and right as I started the engine…that horrible screeching sound started. I am guessing this is because the alternator had to work harder to get power to the battery? I am not sure. Wondering what I can do to fix this problem. It’s becoming a real nuisance and I am worried I could damage something by continuing to ignore it. Please help my fellow cartalkians!

How old is the serpentine belt? Id start by replacing that.

I don’t think it’s ever been replaced. The car is 11 years old.

Replace it now. Get a good belt too - not a cheapy one. Come back and update.

sounds like a belt slipping

You can confirm this by opening the hood, standing in from of the engine bay, and listening for the squeal while someone else starts the car. It shouldn’t take long to locate the noise. I agree that it is likely the serpentine belt.