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2013 Fiesta Zetec 1.0 Tappety noise from top of engine.

oldjagman

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#1
Hi all, My 2013 Fiesta with 71000 miles has a very tappety like noise coming from the top of the engine towards the front.
This noise can be heard from inside the car with windows closed. I have changed the engine oil and filter although it was not yet due which made no difference at all.
If it was an older generation of engine one would bet on it being tappets needing adjusted (closing as required) . It is definitely a 'mechanical ' noise as opposed to a rubbing / belt noise .
Car still drives well with no apparent loss of power. Engine starts without issue. Smooth tick-over. No engine warning lights on hot or cold static or driving.
I am hoping someone can guide me to curing this issue. Thanks
 

Handy Andy

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#2
In few words, you have little to worry about.

It's when it's at 70K + miles and it does not produce any noise, then the issue may be something more of a coked-up valve cover and if it burns oil - the PCV can't cover for it and even a good oil change won't help.

So if it's valve clearance and the idle is smooth - I guess we'd have to hear the noise to determine if it's valve train or something more exotic. A shaking idle you feel in the car is what I'm talking about - meaning it's jumped time or the belts worn and the slop is getting worse to affect the ability of the engine to maintain idle and balance.

You're not complaining about that - just this "watch-ticking" sound...

You are not hearing a rubbing - and a squeal would be from the belt or bearing in the serpentine belts' route - so if no noise there, and idle is smooth - how's the heat in the radiator - coolant, ok? Why this? Well, if the motor is getting hotter than it should, it will thin out the oil viscosity and you hear tapping - but if its going all the time - then the valve train wear is consistent. Something happened before this so the cams are showing the wear to valve clearance - so the only other choice is to think about a thicker grade viscosity to see if the oil is getting too thin, the heavier grade viscosity might help calm down the noise.
 
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oldjagman

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Thread Starter #3
Thanks Any for your response. I was going to mention that I thought there was more vibration from the engine than there should be, these 3 cylinder engines are not the smoothest running engines about.
Re the coolant, this noise is apparent hot or stone cold. I did go up a grade (thicker) of engine oil and added 2 Litres of Lucas engine stabiliser which made no difference at all. The timing belt may need looking at as I expect it has never been changed. Could the noise be possibly be from a belt pully with a detached belt guide ?. I have been reading up on this and I see some cogged pulleys have the belt guide disc on the side of them become detached.
 

Handy Andy

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#4
Interesting - you've been doing some homework.

Yes, ANY 3-cylinder engine'd car will shake - worse than even numbered - because of 3 being a "prime" number - that forces the typical 4-stroke engine to use 270 degrees of rotation before the next power stroke.

The more cylinders you have - the smoother the engine will run (to a point) - so what about 2 cylinders? Well, that divisible - and that means every 360-degree turn - the power stroke occurs on the other - alternating cylinder. So the top of the circle it produces power - the pistons, crank and balancer and to some degree the flywheel - have to carry that torque moment along into the next compression and then firing stroke. Even twin cylinder vehicles are smoother than any odd prime like 3.

It's when you get above 4 cylinders that 180-degree power stroke event - then does the engine run smoother due to less momentum carry thru is needed.

Now, with the above in mind, now that I know, is your unit turbo'ed as well?

With the advice you've given and I've learned more since, the timing belt, it's cog and the guide - (although the guide will make more of a rushing rustling even a squealing sound as it RUBS against the inside shoe of the outer hull of the cover) the issue of the tik-tik-tik might be from that dog clutch or "dog" used to hold the belt gear to the crank getting looser - you just might be right.
.
 
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oldjagman

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Thread Starter #5
Any tips on how a cursory check could be done by myself without having a full strip down required. I am a lot more used with 1960's mechanics hence my name here.
 

Handy Andy

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#6
Then it would be prudent to simply remove/loosen the top cover bolts and inspect the opening - if possible a snake cam or your phones' camera - if it can take macro photos - inspect the belt itself, take you finger and wipe inside surface of the cover and also on the metal - feel, smell - inspect for rubber and metal shavings - a simple magnet to help find filings in the dust while you inspect might be worthwhile.

If you remember doing things like this in the 60's that hasn't changed - in fact it can offer far more in intuition to help others that need to know more about why things work the way they do, not just the how.

Much of the problem is laying in the bottom of that cover, so if possible, there may be clues in your close inspection of the harmonic balancer and directly below it to look for tell-tale trails of debris from the inside that might help - this also goes for along the entire seam between the case and the engine block - look for debris trails any point along the path that seam, plastic to metal contact that may vibrate or shake - might open enough to "vent" some of the powder dust and also points of entry for dirt as well as it's exit point.
 


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