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Hello, I have a '95 impreza outback,(non-turbo), it has a 2.2 engine. I had a new timing belt kit installed and when it was done, the passenger side valves are very noisy. I pulled the valve cover and the cam seems to be pretty dry. The noise is the worst when first started, then quiets some after a few miles. I change the oil regularly. Has anyone had this same symptom, and what was the fix.  Thanks

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This doesn’t quite add up so let’s get some data:

 

Miles and condition - it drove fine for 10,000 miles before this?

Why did you replace the timing belt?

What else did you touch while you’re in there?

 

What made you think this is timing belt related?

It should have nothing to do with the passengers side cam oil supply.

 

The belt installs around the oil pump but it needs to be installed to run so it’s not like it can be messed up without knowing.

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 Car has about 180 K on it, and has run fine for over 10 K that I have put on it.

 

I replaced the belt because the last known change was 89K. I changed all the idlers also cause they were rough.

 

I also fixed some small oil leaks, and cleaned the engine. Never really did anything to the passenger side. Also replace all rubber hoses.

 

I don't think it is related, just that it started after the work was done. I pulled the valve cover and the cam , (what you can see of it) seemed dry. There was oil in the cover when I pulled it tho.

 

Also it seems to quiet somewhat after a few miles driving, but not completely.

 

 Thanks for the response. I'm kind of new the subaru world.   B)

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Describe the type of sound - consistent, rthymic, changes, varies with throttle, so loud you need mufflers or only the most OCD "OH MY !()$ YOU TOUCHED MY PAINT" type people would hear it? 

 

Describe the location - front, rear, left right, top, bottom, center of engine block?  Use a mechanics stethoscope (harbor freight $4) or dowel to help. 

 

maybe you have piston slap?

Sometimes an exhaust noise can take on a 'tick tick' type sound and people can assume it's the engine when it's not. 

what oil leaks did you fix? 

 

you could test oil pressure and see what you get, but many folks don't have the equipment to do that. 

i've started a Subaru on rare occassions without the valves covers on just to see what's going on - I mean for like 3 seconds. i'm not sure that's warranted here yet but it's an option depending on what you think you see/hear.

 

you might want to pull the drivers side cam and maybe you can tell if they both look the same then you can rule out that's it's something indicative of the "passengers" side only, that might send you down rabbit trails. 

 

To some degree the bearing surfaces on the cams are confined and not just saturating the insides of the valve covers with oil everywhere but you should certainly see some oil after running, it's not like they don't have a problem leaking from the valve covers gaskets all the time!

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OP, you sure that noise wasn't there before you did work on your car?

 

I used to hear many "new" noises on my car after working on it, particularly after an engine install or internal works on the engine or gearbox.

 

It could be that you've never noticed this tick on start up before, but since replacing the cam belt you're more critical of noices heard since the work was done. It may have always been there...

 

My EJ gets a lifter tick every now and then - idling when cold, when oil level is low, sometimes when hot... It always goes away and is of no concern to me. But it is a good indicator that my oil level could be low :D

 

Cheers

 

Bennie

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Thank's for the responses.  I'll try to answer all questions. The noise is definitely valve rockers, and is only on the left side. I changed the oil and filter when I was doing the work.  I'm not sure about the lifters, but could be. The thing is that the noise was not there before the timing belt change. I don't think it is lifter click, it is louder and more pronounced.. I don't see how it could be piston slap, as I've never seen a piston break for no reason. I have another question,, Where does the oil feed the head, and could some diry maybe restricted the flow. Does anyone have an oil flow chart I could see??. I'm working with a chilton manual, and it is very vague.

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Oil flow restriction is unlikely. The port that feeds the head is about 7/16" in diameter so I can't see how that would get plugged. If it is throw that engine in the dumpster cause its toast.

 

Most likely you just need new lifter o-rings. It's about $40 for 16 of them from the dealer.

 

GD

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If you’re not very familiar with lifter tick it can be much more pronounced than most expect. Old gen Subaru people call it “tick of death” even though it’s basically benign.

 

Also piston slap is a noise not an indication of any issue exactly. You can drive 100,000+ miles with piston slap. It’s key defining symptom is that it lessens ad the car warms up.

Edited by idosubaru
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As the Lucky Texan has mentioned - check your cam belt tensioner. Remove the cam cover on the lhs and see if the tensioner bounces. If not then the stethoscope onto it to listen for the knocking sound.

 

I'd be particularly suss if you replaced the tensioner with a non genuine item. We had one making noise after 10k km.

 

Cheers

 

Bennie

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I'm pretty positive that it's lifter noise. It's only on the passenger side. GeneralDisorder mentioned lifter O-rings. The car sat all winter after the engine cleaning and the orings could have dried out possibly. I don't see how it could be wear, cause it was much quieter before, and ran fine. Actually it runs fine now, just has the noise, and the dry cam has me worried some. I'm going to pull the rockers on the passenger side and see how the lifters look.  Thanks again everyone for the responses.  

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some folks seem to report good results from running marvel Mystery oil - you might research it. (maybe it frees-up lifters that are gummy?)

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I also fixed some small oil leaks, and cleaned the engine. Never really did anything to the passenger side.

 

elaborate please.  What did you remove?

 

If you unbolted tyhe rocker set, and did not bolt it back down tightly, or got some debris in there, that could cause lifter tick.  the block that the rockers ride on must seal tight to the head to privide oil flow to the rockers.

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Also - how many miles have you driven since all the major work?

 

Older HLas could take a few tens of miles to quiet up after having sit apart for weeks/months.

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Hello again. I pulled the rocker rack off and I think the lifter o-rings are bad.  I can't seem to find anywhere that carries them tho. General Disorder said they were 40 bucks for 16 of them. Where can I get these?  thanks

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