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Doug
Doug, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Toyota
Satisfied Customers: 6687
Experience:  Toyota Expert Certified through 2007
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1997 toyota camry: 4 cyl 2.2..knocking sound..timing..first start

Customer Question

I have a 1997 toyota camry 4 cyl 2.2 it was making a small knocking sound a mechanic said it was the crankshaft bearings he replaced the crankshaft with a new kit new crank new bearings etc when he got it all put together and set the timing the valves started rattling bad on the first start up and I know enough to know the two are not related so now he says the only way to fix it is to pull the head and take it to an engine shop and have the valve kit installed why did the valves start rattling after a crankshaft job
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Toyota
Expert:  Doug replied 4 years ago.
Hi,

The valves in the cylinder head are adjusted via small shims that lock into the valve buckets, a part that serves the place of a lifter in other types of engine.
Each bucket has a shim installed based on the valve clearance for that valve, and can be adjusted as necessary.

The most common cause of your complaint is a technician not realizing that these shims exist inside the buckets, and not organizing them accordingly. When the head is disassembled (for crankshaft replacement), all the buckets must be removed (to get to head bolts) and marked properly. If they are not marked properly they will be reassembled in the wrong order, and in turn will result in valvetrain noise as all the valve adjustments will be off.

As the vehicle warms up, the metal expands and will take up the slack on some loosely adjusted valves.

From your description, it sounds like one or more valves shims were mixed up during the repair, and a valve adjustment will be required to bring them back into specification.
If this is the case, you should not be responsible for the costs incurred, as this should have been more carefully take care of during the repair.
Further, you should not need any extra parts, etc, as you already have all the correct sized shims/buckets, they just aren't in the correct order.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
He replaced the crankshaft not the camshaft you dont take the head off to replace the crankshaft the head has not been off
Expert:  Doug replied 4 years ago.
Really? He changed the crankshaft without pulling the head?

It is normal procedure to remove the head during crank replacement, as you have to remove all four connecting rods (obviously) from the crank, and the safest way to do this is to remove the head and push the connecting rods/pistons out through the top.
If you leave them dangling below... well it just isn't right, particularly since you have already gone so far as to remove either the engine or transmission in order to change the crank (can't do it without removing one of them).

Given the information that they performed the repair this way, I don't see any correlation between the repair and the new noise, unless there is additional information about the situation.

Do you have a oil pressure light when you first start the car while it is making this noise?

Thanks
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I spoke with the mechanic and he says there is no oil pressure light and it seems that you can replace the crankshaft without pulling the head it was a matter of saving the addtional labor and parts for the top end even though we now have to pay for that, but the questiobn is why is it rattling now and was not befor he started
Expert:  Doug replied 4 years ago.
Yes, definitely a big money saver if you do it that way; the downside is that the pistons don't fit out the bottom, so if you leave them suspended and they slip down too far, you risk major ring damage and no way to reinstall (without then pulling the head).... Anyway.

Is the oil pressure light on with the key on and the engine off?

Thanks
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
you say Yes, definitely a big money saver if you do it that way; the downside is that the pistons don't fit out the bottom, so if you leave them suspended and they slip down too far, you risk major ring damage and no way to reinstall (without then pulling the head).... Anyway. is this the reason for the rattling noise
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Doug is this the reason for the rattling noise
Expert:  Doug replied 4 years ago.
Sorry, I'm kind of a slow typer.

Possible but not likely. If there was any damage done from doing the job this way, it would have symptoms like smoking, or upper piston noise (more solid, clunky sounding than valve noise).

I presume your valve noise higher pitched and rattling metal sounding.

My primary concerns would be an oil pressure issue since the pickup tube was removed... either a restriction or issue with the tube sealing to the pump resulting in low oil pressure at startup... This would normally be accompanied by the low oil pressure light. We know that is not on, however we should make sure the light is working too (if it isn't on with the key on, engine off during it's bulb test, then we don't know if it is trying to come on at startup while it is noisy).

This engine is non-interference... meaning the valves and pistons never touch even when out of time. So the odds of any valve damage are slim to none. In order for them to have hit a valve pushing a piston up out of the way they would have pushed beyond the normal range of motion, which would have damaged a ring (resulting in smoking) prior to valve damage.

You don't have any other drivability issues? No lack of power, slight miss to the engine, anything like that?

Also, are we 100% certain the sound is coming from the valves?

Thanks
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Doug I am not with the car and I was talking with the mech by phone and it seems I just spoke with him and he says it is not smoking there is no lack of power and he took the valve cover off and it is deffinetly getting oil up to the top and he has taken it to 3 other mechs and they all say valve noise
Expert:  Doug replied 4 years ago.
Hmm.

Well unfortunately I can't make any connection between the valve noise and the crank replacement if they did not remove the head during the procedure.
If the belt timing or balance shaft timing was off, you would have drivability issues, power concerns etc.
My only other thoughts would be if it were not valve related, for instance a loose timing belt tensioner, etc, this would not go away when warmed up however.

I am going to Opt out so that other Experts can take a stab at this in case there is something I am overlooking. Please stand by and someone will be with you as soon as they can.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I have a 1997 toyota camry 4 cyl 2.2 it was making a small knocking sound a mechanic said it was the crankshaft bearings he replaced the crankshaft with a new kit new crank new bearings etc when he got it all put together and set the timing the valves started rattling bad on the first start up and I know enough to know the two are not related so now he says the only way to fix it is to pull the head and take it to an engine shop and have the valve kit installed why did the valves start rattling after a crankshaft job

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Are you going to answer or not
Expert:  Doug replied 4 years ago.
There may not be anyone available with any other thoughts than what I had on t he matter.

Your question will remain visible to all Toyota experts and hopefully someone should be with you shortly.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
No one answered my question and I cant contact anyone what now

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Doug
Doug
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Toyota Expert Certified through 2007