Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Screeching when I start the car cold. But the sound goes away.

asked by on

It is a loud screeching coming from the right side of the car, only when I start the vehicle on cold mornings. The sound does go a way after the motor is warm. there are no extra vibrations to the car, but I do smell a faint smell like something is burning.

My car has 81562 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

When you have a squealing noise on start up, that goes away after a few minutes, is normally a belt issue. This is typically a sign that the belt is slipping enough that it makes the noise until everything gets to moving and the belt will quit slipping. Keep in mind that there are other possible causes, but this is the most likely. You may need to also take a look at the pulleys to be sure they are not "glazed", which can also cause a belt to slip, and be sure to check the belt tensioner to be sure that it isn’t beginning to fail. If the tensioner gets to a point that it can’t keep enough pressure on the belt, it will also cause a squeal. If this is something you feel you need a hand to identify and/or repair, consult a certified mechanic, like those available at YourMechanic.com.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Screeching when I start the car cold. But the sound goes away.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: trouble getting car out of 1st gear , sometimes into 1sr gear aswell

Hi there. Typically this issue is caused by a malfunction within the clutch system. In some cases, it can be as simple as the clutch pedal being out of alignment or needing to be adjusted. Sometimes however, it can be...

Q: Creaking when turning steering wheel

Hi there: It's possible that either your steering stabilizer bar bushings or strut mount bushings might be slightly worn out; which can cause the 'creaking noise' to occur. This is common on vehicles that are about 5 years old or...

Q: Is there a way to check my computer to see if it's faulty or not?

Your computer is located inside the car and would need to be tested by scanning the computer to see if it is storing fault codes for an internal problem or an indication to some engine sensors that may have been...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...