Q: When the car is cold and first starting, the serpentine belt seizes up temporarily.

asked by on

I am wondering if it's the water pump or alternator or something else.everything appears to be functioning ok but this is definitely not normal

My car has 70000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello. A belt that seizes up during cold starts can be caused by a few things. If one of the pulleys is seizing up, it can cause the belt to squeal as it passes over the stationary pulley. I would remove the belt and check each engine accessory pulley to see if any may be seizing up, possibly as a result of a loose or worn bearing.

If one of the pulleys shows any signs of seizing or irregular movement, then that component may need to be replaced or the bearing serviced. Belt issues at cold starts can also be caused by a loose belt, usually the result of regular wear and tear or a faulty tensioner. If the belt and tensioner are the originals, it may be possible that one of them is worn and needs to be replaced.

I recommend having a certified mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, come to your location to determine if the seizing is a serious problem and if the serpentine belt needs to be replaced.

Was this answer helpful?
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. When the car is cold and first starting, the serpentine belt seizes up temporarily.

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: How much for a head gasket replacement job?

Hi There, It sounds like you may be correct in that this is a classic sign of a blown head gasket. A blown head gasket may cause a number of different symptoms. Coolant in the engine oil, an engine misfire...

Q: car going hot then cold back to hot then cold again

The information given is not enough to definitively say what the issue is. Consider the following questions. Is it the dashboard temperature gauge that is reading like this, or have you checked the actual engine temp with an infrared thermometer,...

Q: Engine light and battery light came on and I lost my power steering.... this guy is telling me it is my serpentine belt 2003 Audi A6

Hi there - this is the logical failure for the symptoms you describe. Look just behind the radiator (not much room in there!) - if you see bare pulleys without a belt, the serpentine belt has failed you. I would...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
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...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...