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Q: Rattling noise as I change gears and accelerate

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I have a ford festiva 1999 inline 4, 1.5 lite. I know it's a shit box but it's my get around car.

When I accelerate and when I change gears, put it in gear to be exact, there is a rattling noise, not all the time, hot cold doesn't seem to make a difference. It's like something is loose and the noise is random

My car has 100000 miles.
My car has a manual transmission.

Random rattles are difficult to pinpoint without actually hearing it but I can list a common cause or two. Considering the age and mileage of the vehicle, the exhaust system is a good place to look. Exhaust systems are commonly hung from the vehicle using rubber hangers. If any of those hangers are stretched or broken, it can cause rattles, sometimes consistently and sometimes randomly. Another exhaust system component to check is heat shields. There can be a heat shield on a few different exhaust components such as a front exhaust pipe or catalytic converter. It can be a single piece mounted to one side of the exhaust component or it can be two pieces welded together to cover both sides.

These shields are typically spot-welded to exhaust components. Meaning, there is not a continuous weld around the entire piece(s). There are numerous spot-welds. With age, these welds can sometimes rust and separate. When this happens, the heat shield can rattle against the exhaust component or even against parts of the chassis. It typically sounds like a metallic rattle and can sometimes be heard by revving the vehicle slightly when the vehicle is not moving.

Have a certified technician, like one from YourMechanic, look into the rattling sound to isolate the exact cause and help you fix it accordingly.

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