The Squeal is gone!
66,000 miles. I was looking into replacing the compressor, as it was the cause of the noise. Recently the noise became a bit more frequent, so it was time to do something. While looking on ebay for a re-manufactured compressor, I came across replacement clutch bearings. Doing some utube searching, I found various videos on how to replace the bearing. It looked simple enough, and at a cost of $22 (w/shipping), it would be a relatively cheap gamble before spending $200+ on a replacement compressor. I found a company called Automotive Budget located in New Port Richey, FL and gave them a call (727) 232-0887. I ordered Item # 2027 (ID 30mm, H 22mm, OD 52mm) which is good for the Denso 10S17C compressor in the V6 3.3L Solara. A couple days later, the bearing was delivered.
I had the A/C system evacuated by a friend, and I was good to go. I put the car up on ramps to reduce back strain, and got to work. Do as you're always told, and disconnect the battery. I didn't, and when I was removing the alternator the cable hit ground and I got a good spark, I then disconnected the battery cable. The alternator was probably the hardest to remove, but it wasn't hard. The compressor came out and off I went to the work bench. I used a large pipe wrench to hold the pulley while I loosened the center bolt. The clutch/pulley came off easily, just don't loose any of the spacers inside the bolt cavity (I only had one washer). The back of the pulley is where the bearing is, and it's peaned in place. A Dremel tool with a grinding disk will cut away the peens. Now to press out the bearing. I used a small Arbor press, and made sure the pulley was supported well so that it wouldn't distort while pressing out the bearing. Some PVC pipe connectors did the trick nicely. For the Arbor press, I used a long wrench to help add some leverage, and the old bearing popped out.
Supporting the pulley from the opposite side, it was time to press in the new bearing. After I got it into the pulley a little bit, I added Lock-tite to the outer race of the bearing, it will hold the bearing in place, and new peaning won't be needed. I pressed the bearing into place and was done, back to start installation.
The compressor went in, the alternator went in. The hard part was getting the serpentine belt back on. All done, time to start the car and see if it was money well spent. Turned the key, and nothing. Dash lights were good, but it wouldn't turn over. Checking the drivers side of the engine compartment, the power distribution box had a 120A fusible link for the alternator, it was blown from the mis-hap during the alternator removal. The fusible link fell apart instead of coming out like a fuse would, the two legs remained fixed and would not budge. Using a jumper wire, I was able to test and start the engine, and the squeal was gone, success. Got another fusible link, and watched utube again to find out how the link is replaced. It turns out that the air intake must come out, the battery must come out, and the power distribution box needs to be unbolted. Once unbolted, the top needs to be separated from the bottom, bunches of little snap things hold it together. Once apart, there are 2 screws that need to be loosened, one for each side of the the link, and then the legs can come out. Plug in the new replacement link, and put the 2 screws back, and everything else that was removed to get to it. This job was worse than the entire original job. Got the A/C recharged by the same friend, and everything is wonderful. Every time I pull up to a red light, I still expect to hear the squeal, but that gone now. All this for a simple $22 part. I only wish I found this part 30,000 miles ago...