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Ticking Sound when engine is cold 4.0 sohc

alexg47

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Hi guys,
I just bought a 05 4.0 sohc explorer and i have some questions. First off I bought the truck assuming that the timing guides were bad (common problem). First question what is the best way to tell the timing guides are bad? The truck ticks when the engine is cold, its 20 outside this morning and it ticked for probably 5 min till it warmed most the way up. But once it gets almost to operating temp the ticking goes away were you can't hear it even if your looking for it. I used a stethoscope and found the tick on the driver side valve cover on a little nob looking thing that sticks off the valve cover. By my guess is that the nob would be above the first valve on the driver side. From what i have read is that these fords have hydraulic valve lifters that can loose their pressure and they pump up with oil when they go bad, and that they cause no harm to the engine while they pump up. My original plan was to pull the valve covers and inspect the valves to see what was going on but the bolts for the intake are rusted out and i stripped 3 just trying to get them out, so i will have to tap those out if I want to get further into this. The truck runs very smooth and i cant hear anything when the truck is warm which makes me almost doubt the guides are bad because i should hear something even when the truck is warm right?
 


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Mike65

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Welcome.
 








alexg47

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Is it easy to get the oil pan off? Would there be little plastic chunchs in the oil if I did an oil change?
 




alexg47

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If there is no plastic in the oil then would it be safe to assume the lifters are bad?
 




Number4

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Ticking is not used to describe a timing issue. Timing issues are more like ball bearings in a can. When people open up these 4.0 SOHC's, more often than not, they are completely cruded up.
I'd suggest that you have an oiling issue. Once the oil warms up, thins out, it reaches the top end sufficiently.
As I understand, the VC's are a pain to remove. But that's where I'd start.
Once it warms up (driving for 20 or so minutes) if you let it sit for a few hours and start it, does it make the ticking noise?
 




alexg47

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If it is still warm it won't tick or not for long if it does. The warmer it is the less it ticks if it ticks at all. When I had it in my shop I have the temp set at 70 and when I started it the truck ticked for about 30 seconds and then the tick was gone. If I go to the store and get in it after 30 min it doesn't tick. Just when it's cold. I did add some Lucas oil additive to see if that would help keep some oil up in the valves. Should I try to do the tranny fluid oil flush next time I change oil and try to clean out some of the engine?
 




alexg47

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If I ran it and let it sit for a few hours in the cold yes it would tick. This morning it was 20 out and it took about 5 min for tick to go away.
 




alexg47

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I let the truck sit for 4 hours after it got to operating temp and no tick when I started it back up 4 hours later in 30 degree outside temp.
 








Tech By Trade

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Have a real close look at your exhaust manifolds too. The v8 is notorious for cracking the studs, but my 4.0 managed to bust the rear drivers on mine. When she warmed up things expand and the "tick" went away.
 




p38fln

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My 4.0 SOHC does exactly the same thing - ticking until it warms up, then there's no sign of ticking until it cools off completely. I've been thinking of trying a synthetic oil, but in the meantime I just wait for the ticking to stop before driving it
 




alexg47

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It's not an exhaust leak. The ticking is in the valve cover for sure. I was thinking of doing synthetic oil also just to see if it would quite the valves. I will try that on my next oil change.
 




TechGuru

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alexg47

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How hard is it to replace the lifters? Is there a video on how to do it?
 




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