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2003 Dodge Dakota Question: It makes a loud metallic noise at idle, what can cause this?

 

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goodtwin2, 3.9L V6, Toledo, OH, June 30, 2011, 03:49
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The mechanic that put the belt tension assembly on says he didn't hear a thing, it is so loud at idle there is no way it can't not be heard. The belt tension assembly was suppose to solve the problem, it didn't.It doesn't make the noise while driving, only at idle. The alternator is new, the air conditioner compressor is new. I am at a lose of what to do and am afraid to drive it.

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  • Answer #1

    Visitor, July 06, 2011, 14:51

    Does the noise come and go as engine RPM's go up and down or is it only at idle? Is it louder up under the hood or underneath the vehicle? Front or rear of the engine? Does the noise only occur when stopped in neutral, in gear, or when moving at low speeds?

    An easy was to start is to remove the serpentine belt(s) one at a time and see if the noise goes away. If it does you know that the noise involves whatever that belt is spinning or related parts. Try rotating each pulley by hand to see if it moves smoothly, has any wobble in it, or if you can hear any noise, or if there are any cracks in the pulleys themselves. Also check all the mounting bolts for each pulley and rotating assembly (alternator, A/C, P/S pump, water pump) and make sure they are tight. You can also check for cracks in the mounting brackets.

    If the noise does not go away after removing the belts then you likely have a more serious problem. The noise COULD be coming from the exhaust, a loose shield, bolt, etc. Or it could be coming from the flex plate if you have an automatic transmission, or the engine.

    This is where it gets more difficult to diagnose and someone with more experience and expertise and likely some special tools will need to be engaged.

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