4.6L Engine Rattle @ Startup...Timing Tensioners? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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4.6L Engine Rattle @ Startup...Timing Tensioners?


Well-Known Member
December 11, 2010
Reaction score
City, State
Cedar Rapids, IA
Year, Model & Trim Level
04 Eddie Bauer & 13 Ltd
Our 2004 4.6L Explorer 4WD has been experiencing a slight rattle for about 1 second during cold engine startup for the last year or so. Yesterday, after I changed the oil, the duration was maybe 2 seconds leading me to believe that possibly there is a timing chain tensioner problem. The noise seems to come from the front driver side of the engine. We are the original owners of the vehicle and it has 125,000 miles.

Does it sound like I need to replace the tensioner(s) device only or would this be the whole chain, sprockets, guides, etc.? Can I do this with the engine in place?