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Q: Lots of noise when the engine starts

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The engine in my 2008 Honda Civic rattles and makes noise when it first starts up. I can’t feel a difference in how it drives, but the noise doesn’t sound good. Is this something that I should address right away? I don’t wanna ruin my engine by being passive, but I also don’t want to waste money if there’s no real problem. What should I do to address (or not address) this issue? There are 45,000 miles on the engine.

Noises are one of the most difficult problems to diagnose because they often only happen for a brief period of time and sometimes only under certain conditions. The first thing that needs to be addressed is whether the noise is coming from the engine itself (like lifters, piston, and camshaft) or from something connected to the engine (like motor mounts and the drive belt components). Once the source of the noise is located, a cause can be determined and repair determined. Generally, if the noise only occurs at cold start then goes away and doesn’t reoccur when starting warm, it is usually directly engine related. If the noise happens at every startup, it is likely something connected to the engine, for example a collapsed motor mount transmitting a vibration and noise through the chassis. As your noise sounds engine-related, it would be best to have this looked at in a timely manner. To have your vehicle inspected, please contact YourMechanic and one of our technicians will be happy to inspect the engine noise.

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