Since purchasing this 2004 Vauxhall Zafira 2.0 diesel, the owner had been slightly concerned about the groaning noise made by the engine. He had never owned a diesel before and the seller advised him that this was normal.
When the vehicle was brought to us for a service, we were not convinced the engine should be quite so loud and persuaded the owner to let us check things out. Removing the auxiliary drivebelt and spinning the various pulleys by hand, we discovered that the alternator bearings were the source of the trouble.
A light spin of the alternator pulley produced a horrendous groaning noise and our advice to the owner was change it! Knowing that prevention is better than cure, and that sooner or later the alternator was going to fail, the owner took our advice about replacing the alternator. With the new unit in place, the decibel level of the engine dropped and the owner was pleased with the much quieter operation of the vehicle.
The alternator is located at the back of the diesel engine, so removing the air filter and induction pipes gives easy access.