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4.6" with a lifter tick-type noise at warm idle only?

pacmanfan

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2002 Explorer XLT
My '02 with 4.6L has a tick coming from the passenger valve cover area. It's not present at cold startup, goes in and out as the engine speed steps down, then ticks consistently as soon as the engine settles into its low warm idle. It sounds just like a lifter tick to me. It's loudest through the valve cover and idler pulley bolt. At first I considered an idler pulley bearing, but it really sounds internal. I was thinking maybe something with the timing chain, but it goes away once you bump the engine speed up by much more than 100rpm above idle. There's no clatter under acceleration. I don't think it's lifter tick either, due to it not happening while cold. Any other ideas, or should I look harder at something I've already mentioned?
 


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boominXplorer

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I've seen a lash adjuster do this (basically a lifter in ohc engine). I'd take the valve cover and take a look. Timing chain debris can clog the lash adjuster ports.
 




Larryjb

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I had an intermittent lifter tick (I thought they were called tappets) almost right from day 1 when I got my 92 grand marquis with a 4.6L with 60000 km. It never caused any problems other than some ticking. I just sold the car with 400000km.

Are you using 5W30?
 




pacmanfan

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I've had a few more days of listening to it and trying to figure it out, and I realize I had some bad data. It seems like I was confusing injector tick with this abnormal noise. What I thought sounded like lifter tick, is probably just the injectors. The noise I'm concerned about is happening right after a cold start, but it doesn't start until it drops to low idle. It sticks around for a few minutes, but I haven't yet heard it at full operating temp, nor have I heard it under load or while accelerating. It's a clatter/rattle, quite a bit faster than the injector tick, and possibly irregular or lopey.

I'm running Motorcraft 5W-30 oil.
 




yeet1331

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I had an intermittent lifter tick (I thought they were called tappets) almost right from day 1 when I got my 92 grand marquis with a 4.6L with 60000 km. It never caused any problems other than some ticking. I just sold the car with 400000km.

Are you using 5W30?
This is happening to me too. I just posted a thread about it. I put in 5W-20 and I'm at 194,000 miles. Same conditions where it's not really ticking until it's warmed up and idling. Should I switch to 5W-30?
 




mountaineer2004

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At that mileage, yes I would change to 5W-30. (as I did)
Not my original thought, but from a smart mechanic I know.
 




yeet1331

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At that mileage, yes I would change to 5W-30. (as I did)
Not my original thought, but from a smart mechanic I know.
Conventional, full synthetic, or high mileage blend? Went with conventional last time because that's what was in it originally. Changed it myself about 3,000 miles ago and I checked it the other day and it's still pretty clean so I'm not too concerned about it. Next time though I'll switch to 5W-30.
 




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