Rain water gets in hood louver, causing belts to squeal

Jalen.Walker3

New Member
Feb 12, 2019
1
Athens
So I have a Poison Spyder hood louver on my TJ. Every time it rains or snows, my engine bay and belts get soaking wet. The problem isn’t my engine getting wet. It’s my belts squeaking so loud until the water burns off, it’s quite embarrassing to be honest. Any tips on how to stop that?
 

TJ2

TJ Addict
Dec 9, 2017
2,719
Texas United States
That's probably a mistake you put a hood louver.
Just curious shat were you thinking when you want a hood louver?
I say take out the louver and put a cut-out plate on the hole.
 
Reactions: Chris

dbbd1

TJ Enthusiast
Supporting Member
Jan 4, 2019
292
Oregon
I think it's not a mistake at all. It will help keep your under hood temps lower. You might have a different problem though. Maybe your belt tensioner is not doing its job adequately. You could, under the louvre panel, block off the front portion of vents to keep rain off of your belt, though.
 

Sundowner

Nutritious Karenator
Supporting Member
Feb 6, 2019
282
Republic of Dave
That's probably a mistake you put a hood louver.
Just curious shat were you thinking when you want a hood louver?
I say take out the louver and put a cut-out plate on the hole.
Are you speaking from experience, or suspicion?

Modern engines are designed to operate safely in wet environments, and the OP already said that the engine getting wet isn't the problem...and I can back them up on that: in my experience - having a hood louver on my TJ for nearly four years and having submerged the engines of my TJ and my LJ up to the bottom of their airboxes - there's nothing about water that causes belt noise unless there's a problem with a belt. OP: inspect your belt(s), replace as necessary. The tensioner or the idler might be a cause, but when they go out they seem to make constant noise; it's not intermittent at all, and it's not the same kind of noise (constant whirring/grinding vs. a sudden belt-scream).

I think it's not a mistake at all. It will help keep your under hood temps lower.
Ambient: sometimes. Operating: no.

You'll see heat bleed out of the louver vents when you're sitting still on a hot day, but as soon as you start moving the airflow gets so chaotic that it's difficult to tell whether the top, sides or bottom of the engine see the most hot air being pulled away at any given time. Either way - for those that don't know - a louver won't change the temp inside the engine: that's what thermostats do.
 

MountaineerTom

LJ Enthusiast, Retired USAF Weapons Loader
Supporting Member
Sep 25, 2018
524
South Carolina
I have a Poison Spyder louvre. if it’s sitting outside and we get a heavy rain, my belt will chirp for just a second on initial start up. It doesn’t do it very long at all.

In a light rain, I’ve not heard it chirp on start up.
 

Tranz Zam

Member
Jan 13, 2019
28
MA
Nothing wrong with louvers.

Could you block off the very front of the louvers to try and block water from getting towards the front of the engine?
 

Bamacon

TJ Enthusiast
Nov 20, 2015
114
N.E. Alabama
I have a poison spyder louver installed for about 3 yrs now no belt noise and I wash my engine regularly the louver does help keep the engine bay cooler which should help extend the life of belts hoses and other plastic parts. I agree with Sundowner you may need to replace a belt or idler. Good luck
 

Sundowner

Nutritious Karenator
Supporting Member
Feb 6, 2019
282
Republic of Dave
Guys, think for a minute: the water isn't the problem
Could you block off the very front of the louvers to try and block water from getting towards the front of the engine?
You can try, but why do you want to hide a symptom instead of fixing the problem? A belt squeal on startup is usually caused by stiff, cold and worn belts; adding a bit of water to that mix is all it takes for one to slip and scream at you until friction heats the belt enough for it to soften and begin working properly(ish). So yeah, let's say that you figure a way to stop water from getting to the belt, and the noise goes away: you're still left with the same worn, crazed, glazed, cracked, chunked, separated, pilled, oil-soaked, abraded and/or otherwise-fucked-up belt that you had when you started. Better solution: leave the louver alone and replace the belt with a fresh one. No reason to reinvent the wheel here, or to go chasing ghosts.
 
Reactions: TJ Hunnicutt

TJ2

TJ Addict
Dec 9, 2017
2,719
Texas United States
Are you speaking from experience, or suspicion?
Experience. I am also a pencil pusher. I never find the purpose of lowering the engine temp. That is the job of the cooling system module interlocked with the thermostat.

Internal combustion is 80% efficient with the engine hot to 200 F. 100% efficiency under 210 F. and so, why make the engine colder?

Just like your body. It needs to get to 95 F for 80% efficiency. It performs better if it is at 98.5 F. Try to make it down 80 F or lower, it will make you dumb (not you, it's a figure of speech) The brain functions at peak if the body temp is 98.5 F. That is how a body is designed.

The TJ is designed to have a hot 210 F engine temp. that's all I'm saying. You want to lower it, what's the point?
 
Last edited:

Sundowner

Nutritious Karenator
Supporting Member
Feb 6, 2019
282
Republic of Dave
Experience. I am also a pencil pusher. I never find the purpose of lowering the engine temp. That is the job of the cooling system module interlocked with the thermostat.
Perhaps I misunderstood you: the OP spoke about water intrusion causing belt squealing, and you said that the hood louver was "probably a mistake." I took that to mean that you were addressing his statement, and not bringing up the as-of-yet unmentioned topic of under-hood temperatures apropos of nothing, and which have already been covered.

He put a big hole, then the engine gets water soaked, the belt now squeaks.
That is what happened isn't it? I say, patch the big hole!
Go look at your Jeep: the engine is partially exposed to the elements on three sides and completely exposed on a fourth. The louver only adds an additional path of ingress; it causes no problems because the engine is perfectly happy being wet.

Think of it this way: you drink a bunch of beer, you get dehydrated, you get a bitch of a headache. You take Ibuprofen. Your headache feels better because you covered up the symptoms, but you're still dehydrated because you haven't fixed the original problem. That's what "patch the hole" actually means: you just told the OP to cover up the problem.
 
Reactions: derekmac

TJ2

TJ Addict
Dec 9, 2017
2,719
Texas United States
Perhaps I misunderstood you: the OP spoke about water intrusion causing belt squealing, and you said that the hood louver was "probably a mistake." I took that to mean that you were addressing his statement, and not bringing up the as-of-yet unmentioned topic of under-hood temperatures apropos of nothing, and which have already been covered.

Go look at your Jeep: the engine is partially exposed to the elements on three sides and completely exposed on a fourth. The louver only adds an additional path of ingress; it causes no problems because the engine is perfectly happy being wet.
 
Last edited:

MountaineerTom

LJ Enthusiast, Retired USAF Weapons Loader
Supporting Member
Sep 25, 2018
524
South Carolina
Yes. Under hood temps. Not engine temps. There’s a computer under there and lots of rubber and plastic. I figure it can’t hurt to Have it cooler under there.
 

TJ Hunnicutt

TJ Enthusiast
Supporting Member
Apr 5, 2018
414
Texas, USA
My guess is that the answer is a simple one.
The engine and associated parts are designed to work when wet. Consider how wet your engine compartment gets when your driving in a good pouring rain, much less through standing water. Here's my thought/story...
When I first got my '01, it would chirp every time I started it but I couldn't find any issues with the belt so I figured, it's just a [Jeep] thing. I then took it to the coast and drove on the beach (something I will NEVER DO AGAIN! ['cause of the insidious nature of salt and sand]) and found that every time I ran through a wet bit, the belt would slip big time. It would, on occasions, even slip so badly that it would disable the A/C and power steering!
Once I got back to the hacienda, I took a really close look at the belt. It was not cracked or crispy or glazed or contaminated with oil or anything else I could find along those lines. What I discovered it WAS was TOO DAMNED LONG!
The PO had put on a belt that I later looked up and found was listed by the manufacturer as being proper for the vehicle but was, in fact, just barely functional. Because of the excessive length, the tensioner was at nearly full travel and the belt, where it passes near itself at the point of the tensioner, was within half an inch or so of actually touching itself. A bit of research online and I saw others had similar issues and that (at least) one brand seem to be a popular choice because it did not have that issue...Dayco.
I purchased a Dayco Poly Rib belt # 5060883 and have not had issue one since then. As a test, I have had the engine running, with A/C on and sprayed the belt directly with a hose and it does not chirp, burp, or squeal!
Give it a shot and see if it solves the prob!
 

Jerry Bransford

TJ Guru
Supporting Member
Nov 9, 2015
9,957
Escondido California
I consider louvres a cure in search of a problem that doesn't exist. If they didn't look so cool to some people they wouldn't be installed. If underhood temps were actually a problem all cars/vehicles/Jeeps would have louvres. They stopped needing louvres many years ago once the engineers got better at car designs.
 
Reactions: astjp2 and Daryl