: Knocking & Shaking at Idle - Rod Knock? Something Else?



SRT ACE
05-14-13, 03:30 PM
Hello all - I'm in need of some help. The problem vehicle is my wife's 2004 SRX V6 AWD w/ 132k miles.

Recently we began to experience a shake/shudder followed by knocking noise at idle. Generally this would happen only after the car was warm and after coming to a complete stop. It is intermittent, and nothing is noticeable while driving.

Just today I took the car for a ~5 mile, stop and go, drive to reproduce the problem and capture it on video. For the first 4.98 miles, nothing. Just as I was pulling back into my wife's work parking lot ready to give up, the problem reared its ugly head. I had come to a complete stop and the car began the tell tale sign of the shaking, followed by the knocking. It continued as I moseyed around the parking lot for a bit and captured videos (see below). It stopped and was silent for the last 50 feet before parking, and while idling in the parking space.

The car is the classic oil consumer, including a leak from the front engine cover. Before driving today I checked the oil and added 1 qt to bring it back up to full.

There are no CELs.

Without leading the witnesses any further, here are the videos:

From the: driver's seat & driver's front wheel well (http://youtu.be/I6uLG2gNKZY)
From the: top of engine bay (http://youtu.be/K_3VY_Ki2i0)

Happy to answer questions and provide more information. Thanks for any insight.

-ace

RippyPartsDept
05-14-13, 03:34 PM
have you checked the oil level with the dipstick lately?

SRT ACE
05-14-13, 03:41 PM
have you checked the oil level with the dipstick lately?

Chris, thanks for the super quick reply. From my OP, "The car is the classic oil consumer, including a leak from the front engine cover. Before driving today I checked the oil and added 1 qt to bring it back up to full."

It is about due for a change, so I'm tempted to check & inspect the discharged oil and filter for metal filings or other symptoms...

-ace

Edit: I'm pretty good about checking the oil level, but over time it has gotten lower than I'd like on several occasions.

RippyPartsDept
05-14-13, 04:08 PM
Your timing chains are probablys stretched a bit ... that's the end result of running low on oil or without oil

the timing cover's got to come off to confirm but it's the most likely cause of that symptom

repnatl
05-14-13, 04:38 PM
That's new to me if it was rod knock typically that doesn't just go away. Another scenario i can think of would deal with collapsing timing chain tensioners or something blocking the oil passages. Check the oil filter for any shavings but its definitely not something to be driving on. Doesn't look like the harmonic balance coming apart its turning smooth. Timing chain hitting the cover. I would love to be there to put a stethoscope on it to further tell. I would imagine some codes though cause mine had codes for a stretched chain bit i have a startup rattle and no codes.

RippyPartsDept
05-14-13, 05:02 PM
the chain stretch will throw codes but not initially ... usually only shortly before catastrophic failure

SRT ACE
05-14-13, 06:07 PM
Strangely, it only seems to happen once warm and NOT at startup. It seems most other chain related issues have been at startup.

What is the shop time listed to pull the chain cover for inspection? I'm thinking this is my next step.

Also, I'm guessing that this condition, although intermittent, is not something that should be driven on. Sounds like 'repnatl' agrees...

-ace

conedoctor
05-14-13, 06:46 PM
Oil is cold and you have more pressure so maybe a pressure related problem, put a gauge on it and see what your oil pressure is. Maybe the pump is unhappy from being low once or twice.

repnatl
05-14-13, 09:41 PM
Strangely, it only seems to happen once warm and NOT at startup. It seems most other chain related issues have been at startup.

What is the shop time listed to pull the chain cover for inspection? I'm thinking this is my next step.

Also, I'm guessing that this condition, although intermittent, is not something that should be driven on. Sounds like 'repnatl' agrees...

-ace

Think the partial teardown time is 7-8 hours i paid $800 for them to remove the valve covers intakes and everything including the cover all the way down to the chains still installed.

SRT ACE
05-14-13, 11:50 PM
Thanks for all the input thus far. I've made arrangements to have it off the road until at least Friday.

If an oil pump/pressure issue, wouldn't the sensor signal a dummy light? Could the sensor be bad? How about the thread size for the sensor (for the pressure test)?

How does the shake/shudder that typically proceeds the knock tie in?

For the next steps, in no particular order, I may:

-dealer trip - diagnostic trip to the local dealer, not cheap, but expert knowledge
-oil change (oil & filter inspection) - cheap, low hours, insightful (?)
-oil pressure test - would need to pick up a test kit, but cheap, low hours, insightful (?)
-partial teardown - not necessarily costly (if I do myself), but a lot of time

Anyone inclined to steer me one way or the other? So, nobody seems to think it's rod knock?

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So, I couldn't sit still tonight and decided to quickly check the oil filter. Pictures:

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-pKcB5w1m70Y/UZMEl4aCqoI/AAAAAAAAIDk/R0TUZiT-Lwg/w1024-h768-no/IMG_20130514_233736.jpg

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-LqRmWV4oNJw/UZMEl2ScyjI/AAAAAAAAIDo/xqnABPcT-D4/w1024-h768-no/IMG_20130514_233751.jpg

There did not appear to be any metal filings or sludge. Where does this take us?

SRT ACE
05-15-13, 05:50 PM
Took a video today on 'cold' startup. It was probably mid 60s. Can anyone who's had timing chain issues pick up on anything?

Video of 'cold' startup (http://youtu.be/jpwYBfmE8uk)

The Wrench
05-15-13, 07:21 PM
Well, it's definitely not a rod or crank bearing knocking, or anything in the valve train; the sound is not rythmic, it's more random like a clattering. Sounds like an accessory driven by the fan belt in the cold video. Could be a timing chain slapping against the housing in the warm video, or a water pump.
I recently had an alternator go bad on my Mercedes, and it shook the engine pretty hard - weird.
Check the charge voltage gauge just to be sure.

1. Pull the fan belt and check all the accessories by spinning them by hand. Then crank it up cold for a few seconds without the belts on, and see if the noise goes away; won't hurt it to run for a little bit.
2. Or, buy a mechanic's stethescope for about $6 and probe all the accessories, then probe the front cover and timing chain area when it's making the warm knock.

If you can better isolate the location you can narrow down the trouble-shooting.
from the sounds, my guesses would be: bad water pump impeller, bad idler pulley, bad internal timing chain rail. But the missing engine rules out the first two probably.

DG

SRT ACE
05-15-13, 10:52 PM
Well, it's definitely not a rod or crank bearing knocking, or anything in the valve train; the sound is not rythmic, it's more random like a clattering. Sounds like an accessory driven by the fan belt in the cold video. Could be a timing chain slapping against the housing in the warm video, or a water pump.
I recently had an alternator go bad on my Mercedes, and it shook the engine pretty hard - weird.
Check the charge voltage gauge just to be sure.

1. Pull the fan belt and check all the accessories by spinning them by hand. Then crank it up cold for a few seconds without the belts on, and see if the noise goes away; won't hurt it to run for a little bit.
2. Or, buy a mechanic's stethescope for about $6 and probe all the accessories, then probe the front cover and timing chain area when it's making the warm knock.

If you can better isolate the location you can narrow down the trouble-shooting.
from the sounds, my guesses would be: bad water pump impeller, bad idler pulley, bad internal timing chain rail. But the missing engine rules out the first two probably.

DG

Thanks for chiming in, DG. Do I understand correctly that you think there is a secondary issue on top of the knocking sound? It sounds like The cold video was taken while the car was still warming up (i.e. higher idle). I have another video, (HERE (http://youtu.be/EjMNsZhKmMs), taken just after the engine lowered to its normal idle speed. Don't know if that helps. For what it's worth, before today I had never noticed the chirp heard in the latest video.

I plan to pick up a stethoscope tomorrow and will report back.

Does our car throw codes but not throw CELs? I can drive (5 mins) to AutoZone to get them pulled if so...

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One other thing. A friend of mine suggests it might be the torque converter and flex plate bolts coming loose. Is this possible? Thoughts?

repnatl
05-15-13, 10:54 PM
Check all pulleys and tensioners and also the crank pulley. Sounds like one of those failing especially all that rust at the crank would be dried bearing grease gone

SRT ACE
05-19-13, 01:42 PM
Couples days later I'm finally reporting back (weather, head cold, etc kept me from doing any work). Bought the cheapo stethoscope from HF. It's my first time using one, but it would appear that the knocking sound is NOT coming from inside the front engine cover. Rather, the loudest two spots were directly on the power steering pump and the adjacent tensioning pulley. Using drinking straws (I know, real safe) I removed the remaining fluid from the power steering pump reservoir:

**edit - removed picture as doesn't apply to this problem**

It was only a couple ounces and looked very dark, burnt. For what it's worth, I doubt it's ever been changed. Could a failing power steering pump cause my symptoms? Or am I hearing a noise from behind the engine cover coming through the pump?

I would try running it without the belts on, but I can't reliably reproduce the sound. I.e. I drove it for 10 minutes this morning - didn't make the noise once until I pulled into the driveway. I then drove it again for another 5 minutes - nothing until I pulled back into the driveway.

Also, I was able to make the noise go away but putting the car into neutral and revving a little bit. The knock would go away, it would settle back down to idle RPMs and the knock was nowhere to be heard.

glake89
05-19-13, 01:56 PM
The pump is a vane type. I suppose if it were real low on fluid it might knock but I would rather expect a whine. That's what mine did.

The revving thing makes me think 'low oil pressure'. Get an external gauge to check.

SRT ACE
05-19-13, 04:03 PM
Thanks for the suggestion, Glake. I don't have a pressure gauge yet, so right now I'm going to head outside, remove the belts, and check the tensioners and pulleys.

SRT ACE
05-19-13, 05:28 PM
So, I just removed the belts and tugged on the pulleys and tensioners. All seemed firm with little to no play.

Additionally, I went for a drive with the PS/AC belt off (replaced the water pump/alt belt) to see if the knocking noise would reproduce, thereby eliminated the PS and AC as possible culprits. Sure enough, once hot, the noise reappeared. I was able to poke around a little more with the stethoscope with no running belt and the loudest spot I found was here:

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-tbrPdpaLSH4/UZlBZzo2rbI/AAAAAAAAILg/5LBDmblzqCY/w733-h977-no/IMG_20130519_170455.jpg

Essentially it is right near the oil filter housing and the power steering pump.

Also, revving to 1300rpm was enough to quiet the knock.

Thoughts? Suggestions? Is the next step checking the oil pressure? Or, pulling the front engine cover?

glake89
05-19-13, 06:08 PM
is the next step checking the oil pressure?

yes!

repnatl
05-19-13, 07:01 PM
Could be the oil filter bypass valve inside the oil filter housing same area im getting my noise from

SRT ACE
05-19-13, 10:16 PM
Does anyone know the threading on the oil pressure sensor, for the oil pressure test?

TimRSRX777
05-20-13, 01:37 AM
Does it make a different how far the wheel is turned? Had the car been super low on oil recently or only a quart low?

glake89
05-20-13, 09:44 AM
Thread is listed as 14mm

n7don_srx
05-20-13, 11:12 PM
On my 07 oil pressure is one of the engine parameters I can read with my AeroforceTech gauge. Don't know if the 04 reports oil pressure to the ECM like the 07. If you have a smart phone many are using an app called Torque and a Bluetooth dongle that plugs into the diagnostic port to transmit data. Just saying it might be an option to explore to see if you could read pressure rather than plumbing in a gauge.
As reference my warm engine oil pressure is 20-25 psi at idle and around 60 psi at 2000 rpm.

SRT ACE
06-01-13, 02:04 PM
Thanks to those playing along at home. I haven't been able to troubleshoot at all in the last week as I've been caught up with house projects. I bought an oil pressure gauge and should be able to update by the end of the weekend!

SRT ACE
06-10-13, 04:10 PM
Update time: I have been very short of time as the wifey and I are preparing for the arrival of our second child, so I took the car to the local Cadillac dealer for diagnostic work. I still had yet to test the oil pressure. The tech "traced the noise to the timing chain and tensioners." A complete timing chain job was the recommended fix quoted at $2,300. Any reason to question their diagnosis? I'm debating whether or not to do the work myself - obviously time has been at a premium.

I've looked into purchasing the cam shaft holders, front cover guide pins, spark plug guides, flywheel holder, and harmonic balancer installer. What tools are highly recommended? Which ones not really needed? What did you all use to turn the crank? Is the crank special socket worth the $35?

Are there any other parts worth changing out that are not included in a timing chain set (other than seals and gaskets)?

Anyone local to SE PA who wants to earn some cash money?? :)

Thanks all.

-Alex

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Glake, with the updated information, would you still check the oil pressure before beginning the repair work?

glake89
06-10-13, 04:46 PM
Well, if low oil pressure turned out to be the cause of chain failure....................... To me, it's an easy check and peace of mind is worth something.

repnatl
06-11-13, 08:57 AM
Flywheel holder isn't needed get the camshaft locking tools off eBay for the v6 engine those will be your best best turning the crank is a 19mm socket. Remember the top 4 timing marks are needed to be aligned for dissassembly the rest are for installation.

glake89
06-11-13, 10:07 AM
Something you might want to consider before having chain work done. From the SM-
"The primary timing drive chain uses two stationary timing drive chain guides and an oil pressure hydraulically actuated tensioner with built-in shoe. The tensioners minimize timing drive chain noise and provides accurate valve action by keeping slack out of the timing drive chains and continuously adjusting for timing drive chain wear. The tensioners incorporate a plunger that adjusts out with wear allowing only a minimal amount of backlash. The tensioners are equipped with oiling jets to spray oil onto the timing components during engine operation. The secondary timing drive chains use a stationary timing drive chain guide and movable timing drive chain shoe. The secondary timing drive chain shoe is under tension from an oil pressure hydraulically actuated tensioner. All tensioners are sealed to the head or block using a rubber coated steel gasket. The gasket traps an adequate oil reserve to ensure quiet start-up."

ie. with higher pressure, no noise. Also look to anti drain back valve in oil filter. If it failed you'd have no pressure at cold start up.

ktr-sb
06-20-13, 01:07 PM
I strongly suspect this engine is sludged, and the noise may be a bad lifter that is intermittently losing pressure to a sticking ball or spring.

repnatl
06-20-13, 07:30 PM
Glake what's the part # for that anti drain back valve and is there a writeup on replacement? Dealer only want to sell the whole housing to engine piece I know with the number I can order it.

glake89
06-21-13, 10:06 AM
I have no idea if it's a separate part or not, but it's probably some sort of spring/ball seat type of valve that would be able to be cleaned or freed up.

repnatl
06-21-13, 11:16 AM
Is it in the filter cap or the housing itself?

glake89
06-21-13, 11:52 AM
It's off center in the bottom of the housing. You can test by pushing down with your finger and adding oil to housing.

ktr-sb
06-21-13, 12:15 PM
A while after I replaced my timing chains I started getting a cold start rattle. I replaced the oil filter housing cap, with the bypass valve. Rattle went away. Here are some pix: http://srxturnsignals.shutterfly.com/timingchain/625

repnatl
06-21-13, 04:43 PM
Just poured oil in the housing and it immediately drained out and tried again while holding the valve down and still drained in the valve area. So prob going to have to replace the entire filter housing or is that valve separable?

glake89
06-21-13, 06:06 PM
Or remove the housing and see if you can clean the valve so it works.

repnatl
06-21-13, 06:16 PM
Would I have enough room from the back after its off to get in there? Seems like it might be sticking partially open.

glake89
06-22-13, 10:27 AM
Per the SM you need to undo and reposition the AC compressor and PS pump for access to the bolts on the housing adapter. Seems to me an easier way to prove/disprove is to hook up an external gauge.

repnatl
06-22-13, 08:13 PM
Sounds fun :( imma try the new oil filter cap first just in case since that's the easiest so we shall see. Thanks again glake I appreciate the help. :)

SRT ACE
09-25-13, 10:51 AM
Guys and gals, sorry for abandoning my thread. Long story short, I procrastinated and waffled back and forth about doing the job myself vs. hiring somebody else (I had a mechanic respond to a Craigslist post that wanted $400 for labor). Ultimately my wife pulled the plug completely and we ended up trading in the SRX for a Honda Odyssey. To be honest, I'll miss the panorama sunroof, but not much else about the SRX. Somebody will fix the timing chain and have a good car for a long time as I had put a lot of sweat equity into the beast...

-ace

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Oh, and one more thing. I have a complete timing chain set that I had ordered from Rippy, and will soon be listing for sale. Rippy price was $466 shipped and I'm offering it at $420 shipped. PM me for details!

Thanks!