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oldtech

High-pitched tapping/whine when cold or lights on - tappets or alternator?

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oldtech

I've noticed in the past month or so what I thought was tappets squeaking. It's not really tappy; just a hint of 'tinkle'. It's loud enough to be obvious in the car.

 

Then I found it would go away when the lights are turned off, and come back when switched on.

 

It also seems more noticeable when first started cold, and can only be heard at idle or when throttle is blipped (hence me thinking it was the tappets) - cold alternator bearings?

 

The alternator bearings do rumble. If the sound isn't the tappets, is it alternator loading down with the lights? Or can engine load down with lights causing sound in some way?

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steveo3002

sounds more like alternator belt slipping /not tight

 

tappets are a tap /knock /bang sound 

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oldtech

Just got back from 15 mile drive and tried it again - it's not the tappets, they're silent. I cycled headlights on/off; the squeaking isn't like a slipping aux belt at all - I tightened the belt recently as it was slipping in damp weather.

 

When the lights are on, they are accompanied with the squeaking; when off the squeak is completely gone. It's like a loud cartoon sound of a pulley needing some oil. I figure it must be the alternator as that's the only spinning thing related to the electrics?

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oldtech

It sounds like a hot grinding bearing or something - as I say, I think the alternator bearings rumble - could they be hot and noisy after a drive? Why with just the lights on though?

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steveo3002

increased  elec load makes the alternator under a higher load...if capable whip the belt off and start the car see if the noise is there , dont run it for long like it  

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