Q: My engine has a ticking knocking type of sound. It runs fine not buring oil or losing coolent. Sounds like the valves taping

asked by on March 24, 2016

My engine has a ticking knocking type of sound. It runs fine not buring oil or losing coolent. Sounds like the valves taping or rod bearings I can't tell where it's coming from. The sound goes and comes

its a 98 ranger with a 2.5l has 147000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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On a 1998 engine with 147,000 miles, the noise could come from anywhere. I typically check the engine oil level when cool to verify it is correct. Then, I run the engine for 5 minutes, shut it off, and check the engine oil level again.

If after running it for a short time and the engine oil level is lower, then it is likely you have a sludge build-up in your oil return passages preventing oil from draining back to the oil pan. If so, maybe an engine oil flush is in order. At the mileage, sometimes an oil flush may do harm to your piston rings or may help. You never really know.

If the oil level is correct after running the engine, you should have an oil pressure gauge connected to the engine to verify that it is within specifications to factory numbers to verify the oil pump is working properly.

An engine tapping noise could be anything from connecting rods on the crankshaft to an engine valve lifter. If the noise is a knock-knock in a repetitive motion at a slow speed, I would suspect lower engine problem, like a connecting rod (which requires a complete engine rebuild). If the noise is at a higher frequency, then I would think you have a valve issue which could be repaired at a much lower cost.

Based upon mileage, the feeling of how the engine runs, engine codes (if any), and an unknown level of maintenance, it is difficult to determine the exact issue. You may need an engine repair, a new engine, more oil, an oil pump, or just live with it. I’d have a certified mechanic take a look at it to diagnose and fix the sound that’s coming from your engine.

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