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ticking noise!!


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28 replies to this topic

#1 holly13

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 02:44 PM

Hello all, just joined, new subaru owner!!! I hope someone can help!
I bought a used 2002 OB the week before thanksgiving. Last saturday i brought the car into the dealership i purchased the car from to have its first oil change. The car currently has 32,228 miles on it. Before i brought it in there was NO noise. Yesterday on the way to work (first time driving it since the oil change) I could hear a ticking noise coming from the engine, I can hear it inside the car and outside. I checked the oil dip stick and there is oil in the car. I live in Maine and thought it could be the cold, but it doesn't stop after warming up, as a matter of fact you don't hear it upon start up, but when you hit the gas you can hear it. As I increase speed on the highway I can hear it, but there are times it stops, like when I have the cruise control set and I'm coasting. When I stop the car and have it in park I can hear it too after driving. Does anyone have any ideas?? I'm trying to get it into a dealer, but most are busy and I work in Boston, long commute and hours a re a problem!! I'm afraid I will have to wait till Saturday and I'm a bit nervous I could do damage to the car.

#2 unverviking

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 05:49 PM

From my experience, Sube's like thin oil. I religously use 5W30. I had similar issues a couple of winter's ago, the local guy uses 10W30. When I chagned it to 5W30, it went away. I have found it best to request 5W30 at all shops (when I take it in,as opposed to doing it myself) most of their bulk oil is 10W30.

Good Luck, keep in touch...

#3 mtsmiths

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 05:50 PM

Well, I'm gonna hazard a guess that (being in Maine in winter) they put 5W/?? oil in it. Probably nothing wrong. You may be hearing piston slap, which is 'normal', when cold but usually goes away when things warm up and expand. Are you driving the car long enough to get it thoroughly warmed up? Nothin' worse than driving a few blocks in cold weather and shutting down.

Are you parked outside? If so, do you have a block heater? If the answer ares Yes / No, go get one installed.

#4 stanigu

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 10:04 PM

Exhaust leak? If it changes with the RPM or the load, it could be...

#5 RallyKeith

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 10:37 PM

I'm not sure about your particular year, but most of the engines do have hydraulic valve lifters. Depending on how the car was treated, and the oil in it, you could be having an issue with a lifter not inflating. If that is the case it could be caused by a combination of things, including sludge buildup in the the lifter from previous poor maintainence, and oil that is too heavy, which in Maine doens't necissarily mean they put the wrong oil in. As stated by someone else, the engines call for 5w30 as a year round oil weight. For some reason, my subaru dealer puts 10w30 in all of their cars. Also, these hydraulic lifters are fairly small little things( about the same diameter as a AAA battery but half the height), with very small openings to get the pressurized oil in them. If the oil wasn't changed at proper intervals before you bought it, sludge and dirt could have built up in the lifter to cause it to no longer want to inflate. So, as you can see it could be a combination of things that was agrivated by the oil change.

As for possible damage, there isn't anything to worry about. I drive about 90 miles each way to work and I've been driving with this noise on and off for about a month. I actually just fixed it for good tonight. In my case the engine has 170,000 miles on it, and the lifter was just bad, and wouldn't inflate at all. Luckily they are easy to get at, and I have spare motor lying around that I could steal one from.

So, since it only happened after the dealer did the oil change it's not a bad idea to take it back to them, and it shouldn't be a problem to continue driving it until the weekend. To be safe I would suggest trying not to rev the engine really high unless you have too. Worse case, if you can't get to the dealer, or the dealer isn't willing to do anything, adding some Marvel Mystery oil (as reccommended on the bottle) to your engine oil may resolve it. Marvel MYstery Oil had some detergents in it and it also thins out the oil just a bit. Another Brand of magic mixture like this is called Sea Foam. Same basic thing.

God Luck, post back here with your results.

Keith

#6 holly13

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Posted 20 December 2004 - 11:01 AM

ok, i finally got the car in last friday to a subaru dealership/garage. it was the soonest i could get it in, i had been driving it since saturday, when the oil change had taken place. the car had oil in it, i called the dealer that changed the oil, (this is the dealership i bought the car from, my first oil change since buying was free, so i took it there to do the oil change), anyways they told me they didn't put t subaru filter on the car, that they used an after market filter and that i should take it to the subaru garage about a mile down the road from them.

they had the car all day friday and about 3:30 i got the news, quite to both the mechanics and my surprise, i need a new engine!!!!

he told me that "the engine had been flooded with oil" and that the pistons weren't able to operate properly and were "slapping"

the car wasn't running poorly either, it has 30,000 miles on it and was running perfecting up until the oill change, then the ticking started.

the subaru dealership gave me a loaner for the week and everything is covered under warranty so i have to pay for nothing. i haven't called the dealer who changed the oil yet. subaru was considering it but then told me that they "didn't even want to bother with nissan right now" so, either there isn't enough evidence nissan messed up, or it's just a write off for subaru.

but subaru has been great! i hope it continues. and with only 30,000 miles on the car, it gets a new engine.

#7 Setright

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Posted 20 December 2004 - 05:07 PM

Something odd in that story..keep us posted please!

#8 holly13

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 09:54 AM

OK,

i just got off the phone with the subaru mechanic. they put a new engine in the car, by the way the car is an 02 outback, and the original engine had 30,000 on it. they said they finally found the problem, 2 of the 4 rod berrings had gone, and they said it's unusual. he could only think of two things that could do this, but there may be more (any ideas anyone), one was an extended period of reving the engine or running out of oil!

now, i had the car 3 1/2 weeks before the first oil change and there was NO noise coming form the engine, everyone, friends and family were commenting on how quiet the car was, 2 days after the oil change the noise started. i checked the oil then and there was oil on the dipstick. is it possible that there was enough oil to see it on the stick, but not enough in the engine, because I have not reved the engine for any extended period of time? and before they thought the engine had been flooded with oil?

i'm curious to find out what happened, but i did get a new engine that i'm not paying for, now, how do i properly break in a new engine?


#9 mtsmiths

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 10:25 AM

Well, how DO you break in a new engine? There are two distinct schools of thought on the subject.

1. Gentle acceleration and avoid high revs at all costs, do not drive at any set speed for more than a few moments at a time (i.e., avoid cruise control). Change the oil at 500 miles, and repeat the above for the next 500, then drive normally.

2. Drive the piss outta it!

Both schools have expert adherants, I however am NOT one of them. Nor Have I EVER (in over forty years of car ownership) had a new engine to break in.

Have fun with your new car/engine, and Merry Christmas.

#10 cookie

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 11:55 AM

I broke my M series BMW in by treating it carefully, not revving all the way for a few thousand miles, and not keeeping it at the same speed on the freeway. I also gave the car one more oil change thant the manual called for.
Many of my friends are the rev heck out of it school and are experienceing oil burning. I followed the manual and I'm not.
I have done this with about 50 engines and it has always worked. I assume you have the car owner's manual? Do exactly what it says and you won't go far wrong.

#11 Phillip

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 12:20 PM

With 30+years in the business as a professional mechanic (not Subaru), I'm amazed at the number of times I'm asked 'how to break in a new engine' or 'what oil or fuel additives should I be using'. In my humble opinion, the best answer you will find is in your OWNERS MANUAL. Yep, the folks who designed the products I beleive will give you the BEST ANSWER. If typical, you'll be advised to drive it normally, avoiding sustained high speed operation or towing for the first XXX miles. Same answer for oil or fuel additives - if the manual doesn't call for a product, I wouldn't use it, period. I've made many repairs to customers cars over the years that followed advice given by friends who were dead wrong.







OK,

i just got off the phone with the subaru mechanic. they put a new engine in the car, by the way the car is an 02 outback, and the original engine had 30,000 on it. they said they finally found the problem, 2 of the 4 rod berrings had gone, and they said it's unusual. he could only think of two things that could do this, but there may be more (any ideas anyone), one was an extended period of reving the engine or running out of oil!

now, i had the car 3 1/2 weeks before the first oil change and there was NO noise coming form the engine, everyone, friends and family were commenting on how quiet the car was, 2 days after the oil change the noise started. i checked the oil then and there was oil on the dipstick. is it possible that there was enough oil to see it on the stick, but not enough in the engine, because I have not reved the engine for any extended period of time? and before they thought the engine had been flooded with oil?

i'm curious to find out what happened, but i did get a new engine that i'm not paying for, now, how do i properly break in a new engine?



#12 kudd

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 12:21 PM

Here's a WAG (wild rump roast guess) from somebody who knows nothing.....

It's is possible that they drained the oil, put on filter, went on coffee break, came back, took car off lift and drove it out, with 0 oil. Then said oops and added the oil, but the damage had been done. It wouldn't be the first time that ever happened for sure.

So, the subie guy listed "running out of oil" as (1) the the (2) possible causes. I'm guessing he was right.

Good luck!

Kudd

#13 holly13

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 12:37 PM

Hey, your remark Kudd

"It's is possible that they drained the oil, put on filter, went on coffee break, came back, took car off lift and drove it out, with 0 oil. Then said oops and added the oil, but the damage had been done."

was exactly what the mechanic said might be the reason, but didn't want to accuse the other shop!

#14 mtsmiths

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 01:23 PM

I can just hear it now ... key in ignition, rrrrrrr-vroom, idle, idle, idle, idle, idle "Damn, where's the oil pressure, mus' be the pump is weak" ROWL, ROWL, ROWWWWWL, ROW - clatter, clatter, clatter ... "Oh *****" switch off, open hood ... glug, glug, glug, glug.

"Jeeze, glad that's not MY car ... Hey service manager, this one's finished, you can call the customer to pick this one up".

#15 cookie

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 02:02 PM

There is nothing I like better than a brand new engine and if I was offered it I would try to get the latest block.

#16 subbies4life

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 03:08 PM

I am also of the "gently gently' school. I have broken in a few new engines and it's the best way to go. Revving the snot out of a car is guaranteed to set up oil burning. After the experience you've had, that's the last thing you'd need. Hope things go well for you.

#17 Gnuman

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Posted 23 December 2004 - 04:11 PM

subbies4life, your nick is wrong. It should read "If it's not a Subie, it's just a car". . .

#18 cookie

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Posted 24 December 2004 - 11:59 AM

it seems inconsistant to say the engine was flooded with oil and the fact that holly checked the oil and it seemed fairly normal.
If the oil change was not done by a Subie familiar place you have the famous drain the transmission and double fill the oil trick is a possibility.
This would concern me now in that I would like to be sure hollie has oil in the tranny and differential. holly please tell me the subie guys checked this.
Like the guy who sadi the engine could have been damaged by over revving (unlikely but possible), or running out of oil that would be verified by what I have seen.
I have never seen an engine damaged by overfilling with oil. I am sure that is possible but fairly rare. When I have seen them overfilled they just puke it out.
I have never seen double the amount of oil though.
A while ago somebody posted on the board that he had gotten home and a Jiffy lube had double filled his oil and drained his tranny. Luckily he was the type to check and lived a short distance form the shop. No damage was done there if I recall.

#19 Setright

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Posted 27 December 2004 - 04:08 AM

Running in: I am with people on the gentle approach. Keep the throttle opening below half-way and the revs below 3500rpm while the engine warms up. Once warm, you will be free to play with bigger throttle openings, but I would advise against revs over 4000.

Treat it like this for the first 600-700 miles. Change the oil and filter, and start aiming for a normal driving style.

#20 holly13

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Posted 28 December 2004 - 10:29 AM

hey everyone, hope you all had a wonderful holiday!

i picked up the car last thursday night and seems great! i am being very careful with it, not revving, keeping rpms low, and not using the cruise control, they told me not to go above 70 and to vary my speeds as much as possible on the highway, no cruise control. all is well so far.

Cookie, I'm not sure if they checked the tranny? When they had first looked at the car before taking the engine apart they thought it looked flooded with oil, and thought that they (other shop) perhaps added the oil after the damage was done.

Lucky for me this has cost me nothing and I have a new warranty on this engine.

Is anyone form the Southern Maine, Southern NH or North Eastern MA area that would recommend a good subie mechanic for future problems?

#21 kudd

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Posted 28 December 2004 - 10:40 AM

Hey Holly... sweeeeeet that ya got a brand new mill in the beast! Man..if I could just get a new body for mine I'd deal with the old mill!

About oil overfilling... I've always thought that it's a good way to blow seals, but have never heard of any other damage caused by it.

cheers all!
kudd

#22 cookie

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Posted 28 December 2004 - 11:07 AM

there was no oil in the tranny. It would at least be really screaming. It's great to hear that things worked out for you.
I grew up in Greenville myself so I know how important transportation is up there.

#23 holly13

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Posted 28 December 2004 - 11:31 AM

Greenville!!! Wow, that is at least an hour north of where I grew up (well, most of my life, but if your not born in Maine, your not a Mainer!) I attended Piscataquis CHS before leaving for college in MA. Now I'm just outside Portland wanting desperately to move back down to Mass., mostly because I work in Boston.

Yes, transportation is a must!
The tranny never nade a noise, actually the only noise was the ticking. And it didn't even feel as though it had lost much power either.

I have to say, this is my first subaru and I am sooo pleased with the way it handles! Especially in the snow! I came around a packed snow covered corner yesterday and felt no swinging, or even slight loss of control, when i looked in my rear view mirror i watched the car behind me swing its cars rump roast out into the other lane, I giggled I was so pleased. And the engine is so quiet again.

#24 Cougar

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Posted 28 December 2004 - 12:34 PM

Now you know about the Subaru experience Holly. Enjoy the new ride and drive on. Welcome to the forum.

#25 cookie

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Posted 28 December 2004 - 01:57 PM

telling us how well you are doing. That sounds like quite a commute. All the best to ya.




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