Chord of pain

Buchholz, Steven Steven.Buchholz at
Mon Sep 18 17:04:16 EDT 2000

> After my rumbly exhaust, the second bad sound is lifter click.   I
> usually hear it when it is getting about time for me to change my
> oil.  I started hearing it this week, but I still have a month to go
> before my oil change.  So I checked the level.  It was a bit low so I
> added a half a quart to the max line.  Then it seemed to me the click
> was worse.  This is very puzzling.  The only possible explanation, I
... don't forget the other possible culprit on your car ... the vacuum pump
mounted to the head.  I have yet to have to tend to this on my car, but it
does seem to be a pretty common affliction on the 4kQ's.  I know many folks
simply remove the drive rod, I think I would attempt to drain any oil from
the pump before taking that step.  

I don't know why this might be the case, but it sure seems like the lifters
are a bit more robust on the 4kQ's than on the 10v type 44 turbos.  My '85
has over 220K miles on the original lifters, and they show no signs of being
worn out, while I had to replace the lifters on my '88 5kCSQA at 120K
because they made an unbearable amount of noise.  Perhaps the difference has
something to do with the cam profiles ...
> The third note in the my chord of pain is a little wheezing sound that
> comes from the front of the engine compartment in the area of the
> timing belt.  It sounds like a squeeking pulley, but I just had the
> thing replaced less than a year ago.  Is it possible it could just
> need a little grease?

... sounds are so difficult to second guess remotely ... I suspect that what
you're hearing is what some people have called the "turkey gobble" sound.
It sounds as though you recently had the timing belt/water pump done ... I
suspect that the belt was set a shade too tightly and the timing belt is
making a bit of noise at times.  Some believe that the manufacturer of the
water pump can make a difference here too ... I certainly don't have enough
data to refute that belief.  If this indeed is the noise you're hearing
there is nothing to be concerned about ... 

Steve Buchholz
San Jose, CA (USA)

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