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dcramer 09-12-2011 08:58 AM

belt tensioner, or deflector
One of these is squealing like a banshee, any suggestions which one ?

Obviously nobody knows for sure, but is there one that fails more than the other? The tensioner appears to do much more work than the deflector.

AlphasquadM3 09-12-2011 09:12 AM

Hi, i do have more experience with the main drive belt tensioner assembly making noise. especially if it is spring tensioned. hope this helps

SiR 09-12-2011 09:20 AM

screeching is more than likely the belt..

the idler pulley(which I think it what you mean by deflector) would be more of a grinding/groaning noise.

the tensioner could be gone(check the belt tension...should have a bit of give) but more than likely you need a new belt(s)...

if its making a constant noise than its one of the pulleys. belts usually squeal(slip) as you hit the throttle.

kenmar 09-12-2011 09:35 AM

It's not the tensioner, it's the tensioner pulley. Mine did that for a couple of weeks and then it disintegrated as I pulled into my driveway. Lucky for me because I lost power steering once it blew.

I had the old mechanical tensioner, but the dealer no longer sells these. I paid $250+ for the hydraulic assembly from the $tealer. The mechanical one is still sold with pulley at Autopartsway for $45. The hydraulic one from Bimmerspecialist is about $140 (tensioner + pulley set). The mechanical and hydraulic ones are interchangable, although I think the latter is supposedly more reliable.

kenmar 09-12-2011 10:38 AM

Actually, since you probably have the newer hydraulic tensioner, they sell the pulley separately which will save you some coin. They don't sell them separately anymore for the mechanical ones.

First, verify whether it is the tensioner pulley or the deflection pulley that is making noise by spraying WD-40 directly into the pulley bearing. Be careful of the spinning fan blade (or do it with the engine off) and don't get any on the belt. It should silence the squealing for a while. The pulley itself from the $tealer probably isn't too bad pricing wise.

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