Engine Rattle (Lessened after oil change) | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free! This box and some ads will disappear once registered!

Engine Rattle (Lessened after oil change)

mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
2003 Explorer XLT 4.0 AWD

So I had what I figured was the typical timing chain rattle on the v6 explorer. Was loud at idle and also above 2500 rpm. So I did an oil change and also dropped the pan, what I found was nothing, no metal shavings, no plastic guide pieces, nothing, just used oil.

I also noticed that now the rattling has stopped when under load above 2500 rpm, it's just not there. Why do you guys think this is? What else could this noise be? It's still there at idle (most noticeable at the drive through, etc), but it is much quieter than before. I've performed routine maintenance on it since I've bought it 5 years ago.
 
<

Join the Elite Explorers $20 Gets rid of the ads!

Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create and save more private conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.




Number4

"I'm counting to 3, then I'm getting your dad."
Elite Explorer
Joined
March 16, 2013
Messages
4,129
Reaction score
179
City, State
Woodstock, GA
Year, Model & Trim Level
04 Ford Explorer 4.6l
Denial. That's where you are. In a few days, hours, maybe a month, this denial will result in you installing a replacement engine.

These engines rattle when the timing is an issue. I'd say you are lucky that your 4.0 is still running.

What sucks, is that the test is hard to do on the SOHC 4.0's, which involves removing the valve covers. From what I've read.

I'd say stop driving it.
 
<



mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
What confuses me is how it went away though after the oil change? Is it from a different consistency of oil? Most people I've spoken to with a similar issue always found guide pieces in the pan. Literally though I've tested it through and through, doesn't rattle one bit like it was a month ago. I understand what happens if the timing goes on these engines, I believe it happened once before which resulted in me needing a new engine (before I even knew what a ratchet was). Can't really stop driving it since it's my only vehicle. I've heard it could also be the torque converter? I'm just saying this rattling when it was present was loud but it wasn't noticeable unless you were really listening for it, it also wasn't very consistent. One day it would another day it wouldn't. If it was a loose chain wouldn't it be present consistently? I'm reporting here exactly what is happening, I'm not tricking my mind into thinking it's gone, it is gone, just wanted some insight into what could cause that to happen.
 
<



mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
In other words, right now if I took it to a shop to have it diagnosed, they'd probably tell me they cannot duplicate the noise I'm describing. It wasn't very loud/noticeable to begin with and now it's quiet outside of normal valve noise/exhaust sounds/heat shields I need to address
 
<



Number4

"I'm counting to 3, then I'm getting your dad."
Elite Explorer
Joined
March 16, 2013
Messages
4,129
Reaction score
179
City, State
Woodstock, GA
Year, Model & Trim Level
04 Ford Explorer 4.6l
I'm pretty sure I had the torque converter rattle. It's since stopped, which probably means I have no overdrive. Did it mainly at stop lights.

My Mounty has the heat shield rattle.
 
<



TechGuru

Explorer Addict
Joined
August 23, 2015
Messages
2,153
Reaction score
296
Location
Texas
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 XLS 4X4 4.0L FLEX
Could be the hydraulic lifters. What oil are you using and how often do you change it?

Torque converter has nothing to do with the overdrive, that's a gear in the transmission. It's the lock-up converter in the torque converter that you're thinking of.
 
<



mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
I've used 5w-30 for the duration I've had it. The car makes a lot of different noises at times and I'm never too sure of what they all could be. It's usually never consistent either. in any case, should i just get a lower mileage engine? I'm flat out broke and am pulling at strings trying to get this running good. Has new tires, just about to put a full set of new brakes on it. Whole new suspension. Only issues are with engine and driveline now
 
<



shucker1

Elite Explorer
Joined
May 4, 2008
Messages
2,109
Reaction score
444
City, State
Metairie, Louisiana
Year, Model & Trim Level
98 XLT 5.0
@mbrando1994

Lots of members here would say run the engine until it grenades and replace it.

TOTALLY WRONG in my humble opinion.

It's expensive, but catch it now before it gets worse.

Yes, it is expensive. Yes, it's a pain in the A$$.

Put in a junkyard engine and roll the dice if you feel lucky...

You never know, it may be something simple.

You never mentioned how many miles you have on it? Or I may be speed reading again and missed it.

I rebuild, install and maintain large bore industrial engines for a living.

Day in and day out.

To just let an engine destroy itself is just foolishness.
 
<



Tech By Trade

Explorer Addict
Joined
May 2, 2012
Messages
2,535
Reaction score
170
City, State
Your mom's house
Year, Model & Trim Level
07 Sport Trac
Pop the valve covers and have a look at the cassettes themselves. Its the only way to be sure if they are shot, especially if there is no plastic or metal in the pan. You could get lucky and it could just be the tensioners. you are still playing russian roulette changing them out as the new ones can shatter the cassettes if they are too brittle, but there is a chance it can quiet the beast. Well they are off you can have a look at the lifters, They too have been known to cause issues but it isn't as common.
 
<



mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
There's approximately 185,000 on the vehicle and approximately 140,000 on the engine
 
<



mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
Pop the valve covers and have a look at the cassettes themselves. Its the only way to be sure if they are shot, especially if there is no plastic or metal in the pan. You could get lucky and it could just be the tensioners. you are still playing russian roulette changing them out as the new ones can shatter the cassettes if they are too brittle, but there is a chance it can quiet the beast. Well they are off you can have a look at the lifters, They too have been known to cause issues but it isn't as common.
I've had the valve covers off once before, what exactly am I looking for?
 
<



Tech By Trade

Explorer Addict
Joined
May 2, 2012
Messages
2,535
Reaction score
170
City, State
Your mom's house
Year, Model & Trim Level
07 Sport Trac
Streetrod2000 has some photos but I. The passenger side the cassette breaks at the top and the chain wears away the hex bolt that holds it in place. The driver there is a piece of plastic that goes around the top of the upper gear that will be busted off. All the plastic piles up in the bottom and is ground up by the timing set.
 
<



mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
So either way I wouldn't be able to find plastic guide pieces in the pan? You're saying they'd be obliterated? I understand that most times it's the front chain that goes, how difficult would it be for me to replace that system myself? I wish I could do them all but lack the tools (crane/stand/etc) to pull the engine and also the confidence level of tackling that. I've already had the top end of the engine off though and that was back when I was even less experienced.
 
<



mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
In other words, if I tear this thing down that far, should i just attempt to do it myself? Only tools I'd need are an engine crane, a stand, and any other specialty tools for the timing. Just how difficult is it? I know if I get the engine out, (or purchase a used one to rebuild) I'd be able to do it, it's just getting the confidence to tear apart my car to that degree and pull it's engine out that worries me
 
<



<



<



Tech By Trade

Explorer Addict
Joined
May 2, 2012
Messages
2,535
Reaction score
170
City, State
Your mom's house
Year, Model & Trim Level
07 Sport Trac
Not too bad, pop both valve covers, pop the water pump, pop the timing cover, pull the jackshaft chain and gears. pull the tensioner gears, chain and cassette, use the OTC kit to time the entire engine, tighten it all back up, install the covers and your good to go. If you have a balance shaft you have to go around it because you cant change it without pulling the cradle, and you pretty much have to pull the engine to get it off. I cant remember, you may be able to change the spring tensioner on the balance shaft without pulling it. It has been a while. Yours balance shaft chain tensioner is probably alright though because its usually the first one to plop down in the pan, that and the jack shaft chain spring.
 
<



TechGuru

Explorer Addict
Joined
August 23, 2015
Messages
2,153
Reaction score
296
Location
Texas
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 XLS 4X4 4.0L FLEX
So many say the balance shaft is not needed, can one just cut the chain off it it and leave it be? (Not that I'd ever do this, but others might be wondering...)
 
<



Tech By Trade

Explorer Addict
Joined
May 2, 2012
Messages
2,535
Reaction score
170
City, State
Your mom's house
Year, Model & Trim Level
07 Sport Trac
I'm not 100% sure. guys have said they have no issues without it, my guess is ford put it in there for a reason. It should run fine without it, maybe a little more vibration. Cutting it would be a breeze from the top. Hardest part would be making sure no shrapnel fell down into the pan.
 
<

Join the Elite Explorers $20 Gets rid of the ads!

Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create and save more private conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.




mbrando1994

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
274
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Ford Ex XLT
4.0 V6
okay, and I've never actually timed an engine before, I wouldn't want to screw it up somehow but I'd be willing to learn, any good places I could find that?
 
<



Top