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AZTechBrian
AZTechBrian, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Hyundai
Satisfied Customers: 708
Experience:  Owner
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Hyundai Santa Fe GLS: . I have a 2012 Hyundai Santa Fe with

Customer Question

Hi. I have a 2012 Hyundai Santa Fe with the four cylinder engine.74000 miles. Yesterday I was on the LIE and had to accelerate to merge into traffic. The truck hesitated a bit and then merged but began a tapping sound that gets faster or slower according to RPM. The timing chain has not been changed. Oil and filter changes pretty regularly. This is not the light clicking sound that I have heard in other engines. It is more of a tapping sound. Can be heard clearly in the cabin and of course outside the vehicle. It seems to smooth out a bit around 3000RPM. Worse around 2500.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Hyundai
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
Hello. Does it seem to be running a little rougher than usual?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Well I am babying it a bit so I do not cause more damage. But it seems a little bit sluggish. Idles fine. Powers AC etc with no change.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
Ok. I am wondering if you have a failing timing chain tensioner. That could throw your valve timing off and make it run worse and bend valves if it's bad enough. There is a TSB for this issue. I am attaching a link to it below. I would recommend having the oil changed with a high quality oil filter as outlined in the TSB. I would also recommend having it inspected to make sure that your timing chain isn't about to fail causing engine damage. TECHNICAL SERVICE BULLETIN
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I had the oil changed about 1000 miles ago. Do not think it was a Hyundai filter since it was done at Jiffy Lube.
But there were no issues after the change and I have been changing the oil regularly. That is an easy fix so that can be done.
What about the tensioner?. Can you be more specific? Can you also address the lifters. Could one or more be sticking or out of place. Also is there any kind of spacer or spring that takes up slack from the cam to the lifter or the valve stem?
Also can you educate me a little on the nature of the timing belt. On this engine is it a belt or chain?. When should it be changed?
What would the effects of a worn belt be? What would the effects of a blown belt be? Complete engine failure? Thanks
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
Your car is equipped with a timing chain. With regular oil changes at reasonable intervals and with quality oil filters ( that is the concern of the TSB), the timing chain should last the life of the vehicle. Unfortunately with poor quality oil filters as noted in the TSB, the engine and it's components can be starved of oil. After some time the result could be engine damage. Timing chain guides can wear prematurely, tensioners can't apply the proper tension without adequate oil pressure, etc.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
Jiffy lube definitely does not use OE filters. I think they use a house brand filter. I highly doubt it's even a fram but definitely not a hyundai filter. They have seen multiple issues with this engine having oil pressure problems when using lower quality oil filters, which is the reason a TSB was initiated.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So. I will do the oil change right away with the OEM filter. If I still have tapping what would be my next course of action?If in fact the tensioner might be failing what would be the fix.If I have a bent valve how expensive would it be to pull the head and replace the valve.BTW I checked the oil and it is a golden honey clear color with no metal or grit whatsoever.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
If you perform the TSB and still have the tapping, the source will have to be determined. If it's just a bad tensioner, and no damage was done to anything else, the tensioner can be replaced. If the guides are worn down then they will have to be replaced. If your cylinder head has bent valves, that is roughly a 10 hour job to R&I the head, plus parts. I don't want to go into too much detail here because there are just way too many unknowns right now. I don't want you thinking that you need a rebuilt head if a quality oil filter will resolve the issue. Since it is running a little poorly, I would suggest doing a compression test if the oil filter doesn't resolve the problem. That would let us know if you have bent valves or have a valve timing problem
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Fair comment. I will get the oil and oem filter change and then comment back. I will also buy a Lotto ticket just in case. If I win I will fly you in first class to fix the car. Ha Ha
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
sounds good to me! I cold use a get away
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
OK. So I went to Hyundai and spoke to the service manager. He claims that the Hyundai filters have a spring mechanism that retains the oil pressure and the aftermarket ones do not. First service appointment was on Tuesday so I bought the original filter from Hyundai and went back to Jiffy Lube. I explained to them what Hyundai said about their filters and they had never heard anything like it. They also said that Hyundai was the second most popular brand that they serviced. They offered to change out for the original filter at no charge but since we are so close to the mileage for high mileage vehicles we changed the oil again too and opted for the recommended viscosity but with a high mileage Pennzoil oil that contains additives to prevent buildup, etc etc.
No change right away in the noise but have only driven six miles. It is supposed to be very cold tonight. What next?
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
What did hyundai say when they heard it? Did they feel that there was any engine damage based on the sound? It's too hard for me to say whether or not there is damage without at least being able to hear it, but I think it's highly possible based on the sound your having, and the slight sluggishness. The tensioner for the timing chain requires a certain pressure and if the oil filter they used didn't allow the proper pressure, you could have ended up with damage. The fact that a TSB was even issued is evidence that the use of aftermarket oil filters has proven to be an issue in the past. I would be very interested to hear what the dealer thought about the sound.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hey, I got there early afternoon and they were shutting down for the day so he did not take the time to even hear it. He did say that they had several vehicles come through that had a noise issue and that the first thing they did was the change and return to original filters. He said that solved the issue for most vehicles. There was no evidence of leaks or damage under the car. We examined very closely with the manager of Jiffy Lube. So our next step I assume is to do a compression test to give us more information. Do you agree? How do we gain access to the spark plugs? Is Hyundai the only one that can do this. Their labor rate is 120.00. I have a local shop that charges 80.00.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
Have you checked for trouble codes yet? there may be some pending codes.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No codes popped up and there were no warning lights. I should still check the codes?
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
No codes popped up? so, you already checked for codes? If that's the case then I would suggest doing a compression test at this point. The ignition coils will need to be removed to remove the spark plugs.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
what concerns me is that your engine isn't running as well as it should and shows a loss of power.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No engine light came on. I will check for codes in memory.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
Ok.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
OK so just went to a local parts store that had the diagnostic computer setup and there are no codes that they can pull. Also no engine light. I will try to get a compression check on Monday. Pretty sure we are looking at valve issues and a head R and R.
Hopefully minor damage that can be repaired by replacing a valve. First time in my life I have had an issue like this in a newer vehicle. Not real happy with Hyundai at this point. Have a good weekend.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
Unfortunately, I think you may be correct, and I don't blame you at all. I wouldn't be happy either having a newer car with these issues. I would contact hyundai and see if there is something they will do under warranty. I am not familiar with their factory warranty but it's always worth a try.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
If there is a bent valve or valves, it will be shown by the compression test. It should throw a misfire code but sometimes codes don't appear when they really should.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hey I have a file with the noise from the engine but it wont read in this format. If you give me an E mail I can send it to you.
Is there any remote chance that this is timing chain slap, guide or tensioner noise?
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.
Sometimes, over these speakers, things don't quite sound as they do in reality, but I will listen to it later tonight and let you know what I think. EMAIL

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