2013 Regal GS Belt Noise

IndyGS

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Thread starter #1
I have a 2013 Regal GS with about 55,000 miles on it. We've had an unusually hot May here in Indiana and I've been using the AC a lot, and I'm getting a weird belt squeal. It consistently happens under the following conditions.

1.) It tends to happen when first starting up the car after it's been sitting for at least a few hours. Once the car is warmed up, it seems to go away.
2.) It only happens when in gear. When in park or neutral, it goes away.
3.) It only happens at low RPMs. Once I'm accelerating, it goes away until the next stoplight.
4.) It is more noticeable when it's hot (i.e. - when the AC has to work harder)
5.) It is accompanied by a rough idle.
6.) Turning off the AC instantly makes the belt squeal go away.

Here is a video of it happening and then stopping when AC is turned off.

I am 100% sure it's either the belt itself or one of the pulleys that the belt is attached to. Prior to my warranty ending, I took it in to Buick and got the old "could not reproduce". Now that it's out of warranty, I took it to a mechanic down the street from me.

He said he was only able to reproduce it for a second and suspected it may be something on the AC compressor. Both times, I have provided the above information, which is enough for me to be able to reproduce the problem consistently every time.

Part of the problem seems to be that my very detailed information gets distilled down to "customer states AC squeal", which doesn't do a lick of good for reproducing the problem. I'm wondering if anybody else has had a similar issue and was able to get it resolved? And, if so, what part was replaced to resolve it?
 

MelsRegal

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#2
have a trusted individual sit in the car, in gear, foot on brake, while you take a length of rubber hose and use it like a stethoscope to pinpoint the source of the noise. In addition while hearing the noise, spray some water on the belt to see if it has any affect . At 5 years and 55k mileage you may need a new belt.
 

shs92645

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#3
I have same year GS and have had the tensioner pulley replaced once and it may need it again. Symptoms are almost exactly as you describe but your video sounds to me like belt slipping.
 

Monti182

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#4
Had this EXACT issue with EXACT conditions last summer with about 60k on my '13 GS . Thought it might be the belt tensioner, so I picked one up along with a new belt. Found out there was a part# update for the belt so the original part listed (12605208) was unavailable, I got the recommended updated belt part # (12653318) from GM parts direct. Paid about $26 for the belt. Replaced the belt and Viola! Squeal was gone and haven't heard it since. Old belt was dried out and had signs of cracking on the ribs. Maybe they realized that the old part had issues with drying out, or maybe they just updated the part #, who knows? who cares? the squeal is gone. No tensioner replacement needed.

I will say this, if you plan to change the belt yourself, jack up the car, remove the front passenger wheel, and do the job from underneath the car. There is no way to service the belt from above. Whole job took 30 min, with the majority of that time spent raising/lowering the car
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2018 Regal Sportback - 2010 Yamaha R6 (track bike) Past cars: 92 LeSabre, 98 Regal, 02 GrandPrixGT
#6
A worn out belt is most likely to slip when the AC compressor is engaged.

It's not hard to inspect if the tensioner/pully is bad. a good one has very stiff springback.
 
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#7
Latest update - After dealing with the nightmare of Buick roadside, finally got to the dealer and am awaiting a diagnosis. The tow truck driver experienced the same issue I did but when the advisor went to start the car it fired right up. It's throwing some codes so we should get a definitive answer soon!
 

IndyGS

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Thanks for the suggestions, guys! I'm looking for one more piece of advice. I went to GM Parts Direct and put in the new belt part# that Monti182 suggested (12653318), and it said it would not fit my car. So I started over, put in my vehicle info, and then searched for serpentine belt....it brings up the old part number Monti182 mentioned (12605208).

So I tried to do some more research on the difference between the parts, and discovered that on RockAuto.com, they have 12605208 listed as being for the 6 speed manual, and 12653318 for the 6 speed automatic.

Screen Shot 2018-06-14 at 9.51.40 AM.png

GM Parts Direct doesn't even let you specify whether you have manual or automatic. But it is recommending exactly the opposite of what RockAuto recommends. I know one of them has to be wrong, and I'd prefer to get the order right the first time. Particularly since GMPD has the slowest processing on earth. Thoughts?

Also, RockAuto has a "premium" replacement made by Continental (part# 4060780) that has "quiet channel technology" and is cheaper than the AC Delco replacement. Has anybody tried this one out?
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Monti182

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#9
Thanks for the suggestions, guys! I'm looking for one more piece of advice. I went to GM Parts Direct and put in the new belt part# that Monti182 suggested (12653318), and it said it would not fit my car. So I started over, put in my vehicle info, and then searched for serpentine belt....it brings up the old part number Monti182 mentioned (12605208).

So I tried to do some more research on the difference between the parts, and discovered that on RockAuto.com, they have 12605208 listed as being for the 6 speed manual, and 12653318 for the 6 speed automatic.

View attachment 11827

GM Parts Direct doesn't even let you specify whether you have manual or automatic. But it is recommending exactly the opposite of what RockAuto recommends. I know one of them has to be wrong, and I'd prefer to get the order right the first time. Particularly since GMPD has the slowest processing on earth. Thoughts?

Also, RockAuto has a "premium" replacement made by Continental (part# 4060780) that has "quiet channel technology" and is cheaper than the AC Delco replacement. Has anybody tried this one out?
Go with your gut, I only shared my personal experience. I originally ordered 12605208, and was contacted by a cust. service rep at GMPD informing me of the part # update in the GM catalog. What I do know for certain is that Part # 12653318 is what I ended up getting and fits on my 2013 Regal GS w/Auto Trans. Even when doing the job I compared it to the stock belt I pulled off and it was the same width/length albeit a tiny bit smaller as I'm sure after 60K the stock belt stretched out a bit. I had my questions too, as that part number comes up as listed for a Chevy Captiva Sport 2.4. But I assure you, it fits, and my regal has been running just fine with no slips/squeals for the past 10 months
 
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2012 Buick Regal GS 6/auto, 20 inch wheels, Ashen Gray Metallic.
#10
I bought my 2012 Regal GS auto with 29,000 kms on it and from day 1, it had the exact same squeal as your car. Same thing, only when starting it up in the morning and putting it into gear, then into reverse. Off the line it will do it quickly; mostly during slow speeds in the parking lot.

Car now has 90,000 kms and hasn't got worse (or better clearly). So it sounds like the guys here have diagnosed it pretty well being the belt, and belt/tensioner combo.

Let me know what part # you went with and if it worked for your car. I'll need to do mine as it's getting pretty annoying.
 
50
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Vancouver, B.C.
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2012 Buick Regal GS 6/auto, 20 inch wheels, Ashen Gray Metallic.
#11
Had this EXACT issue with EXACT conditions last summer with about 60k on my '13 GS . Thought it might be the belt tensioner, so I picked one up along with a new belt. Found out there was a part# update for the belt so the original part listed (12605208) was unavailable, I got the recommended updated belt part # (12653318) from GM parts direct. Paid about $26 for the belt. Replaced the belt and Viola! Squeal was gone and haven't heard it since. Old belt was dried out and had signs of cracking on the ribs. Maybe they realized that the old part had issues with drying out, or maybe they just updated the part #, who knows? who cares? the squeal is gone. No tensioner replacement needed.

I will say this, if you plan to change the belt yourself, jack up the car, remove the front passenger wheel, and do the job from underneath the car. There is no way to service the belt from above. Whole job took 30 min, with the majority of that time spent raising/lowering the car

When you changed the belt from under the car, did you have to jack up the motor or remove the top motor mount? I found one video on youtube of a guy changing out the belt on a Cruze and he had to support the motor with a jack, then remove the top motor mount (under the air intake box) to get at it from the top.

Would prefer not to undo the mounts or support the motor if possible obviously.
 

Monti182

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#12
When you changed the belt from under the car, did you have to jack up the motor or remove the top motor mount? I found one video on youtube of a guy changing out the belt on a Cruze and he had to support the motor with a jack, then remove the top motor mount (under the air intake box) to get at it from the top.

Would prefer not to undo the mounts or support the motor if possible obviously.

No fussing with the motor mounts is needed at all, there is just simply way more clearance from below than there is from above. I did have to ask my wife to assist in seating the belt on the uppermost pulley while I was below the car holding the tensioner open, but I'm sure I could have figured it out if I was by myself.
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2012 Buick Regal GS 6/auto, 20 inch wheels, Ashen Gray Metallic.
#13
No fussing with the motor mounts is needed at all, there is just simply way more clearance from below than there is from above. I did have to ask my wife to assist in seating the belt on the uppermost pulley while I was below the car holding the tensioner open, but I'm sure I could have figured it out if I was by myself.
What did you have to remove to get access to the belt? Wheel, the wheel well cover...

I'm just trying to assess what tools/time I'll need to do this job, as I'll be borrowing (case of beer) my buddies garage to do it.

Was the tensioner pulley pretty accessible? I'm thinking if I should just change it out anyway since all the effort will be put in to get to that point anyway. It's a $50 CDN part on Amazon.
 

Monti182

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#14
What did you have to remove to get access to the belt? Wheel, the wheel well cover...

I'm just trying to assess what tools/time I'll need to do this job, as I'll be borrowing (case of beer) my buddies garage to do it.

Was the tensioner pulley pretty accessible? I'm thinking if I should just change it out anyway since all the effort will be put in to get to that point anyway. It's a $50 CDN part on Amazon.
I only removed the wheel just to have more space to move around while laying under the car. From underneath there's nothing that really HAS to be removed for access to the tensioner. Once under there, I used a slim belt removal tool to relieve tension on the belt as a regular ratchet with extension really wasn't going to give me the leverage I think I needed. (The way the engine is mounted there isn't a whole heck of a lot of space between the pulleys and the air box/inner wheel well). Good luck with the Tensioner, I thought about changing it, but then decided that if replacing only the belt was going to fix my issue, no use making it a bigger job than it needs to be.
 
50
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Vancouver, B.C.
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2012 Buick Regal GS 6/auto, 20 inch wheels, Ashen Gray Metallic.
#15
I only removed the wheel just to have more space to move around while laying under the car. From underneath there's nothing that really HAS to be removed for access to the tensioner. Once under there, I used a slim belt removal tool to relieve tension on the belt as a regular ratchet with extension really wasn't going to give me the leverage I think I needed. (The way the engine is mounted there isn't a whole heck of a lot of space between the pulleys and the air box/inner wheel well). Good luck with the Tensioner, I thought about changing it, but then decided that if replacing only the belt was going to fix my issue, no use making it a bigger job than it needs to be.
What tool was that? Anything specific?
 

Monti182

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#16
Its called a Serpentine belt removal tool or something to that degree. Just a long flat bar that you can attach a socket to. Think "Breaker Bar", only flat. Costs $20-30 depending on where you go. I don't think it's a "necessary" tool, but it did make the process easier.


Looks Like this:
images.jpg
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50
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Vancouver, B.C.
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2012 Buick Regal GS 6/auto, 20 inch wheels, Ashen Gray Metallic.
#17
Its called a Serpentine belt removal tool or something to that degree. Just a long flat bar that you can attach a socket to. Think "Breaker Bar", only flat. Costs $20-30 depending on where you go. I don't think it's a "necessary" tool, but it did make the process easier.


Looks Like this:
View attachment 11965
I see, thanks!

Think if you had a ratchet on the pulley, you could fit a pipe along the handle to get leverage, or is it too narrow in there?
 
60
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8
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North Plainfield, NJ
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2013 Buick Regal GS, WDT, Sunroof, Nav
#18
I see, thanks!

Think if you had a ratchet on the pulley, you could fit a pipe along the handle to get leverage, or is it too narrow in there?
From What I recall, it should be possible. I think I bought that tool with the intention of working from above the engine, but still ended up having to go below. A ratchet with no extension may just fit. But I think I was questioning if there would still be clearance as the bolt was coming out of the block.
 
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