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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,
new to the forums, and new to Isuzu's in general. I'm a car guy, that being said, we all know how "That guy that works on cars" turns into "Neighborhood mechanic" when something goes wrong with a friends car! ha.

My boss brought me his '01 Trooper this afternoon, and after fighting with it for 2 hours, I got it to crank. Bad guess I'm assuming, just took some engine starter down the throttle body to start it up.

Upon start up, I did not like what I heard though, and cannot put my finger on what it was. It's a clanking sound, almost sounds like the fan hitting the shroud (which it's clearly not, it's something in the motor). Whatever it is, it's in time with the motor, which is scary. As RPM's increase, so does this God-awful sound. He had taken it to a mechanic, they drained the oil and said there was little shards of metal in the pan. Again, I don't like this either. When I did get the car to start also, I had a problem with it backfiring, shooting a nice size flame right out the throttle body from the starter fluid. This leads be to believe that something is out of time. I'm hoping it's just a broken push rod or rocker arm? He's driving the 3.0 V6, with 130,000 on it, and this car was babied. Taken VERY good care of.

I'm not great with these automobiles, so I figured I would turn to the forums. Does anyone have even the slightest idea of where to start? I was thinking about pulling the valve covers tomorrow and seeing what I could see there? Is there a good write up on pulling the valve covers on this SUV? If not, any pointers? It looked pretty straight forward...standard valve covers. Remove coil packs, spark plugs, etc, then 6 allen head bolts keep the cover on? It was getting dark and didn't get a good look.

Does anyone have an clue what this noise might be?

Thanks in advance guys,
JJ
 

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Pulling the covers is a good idea. Could you possibly take a video? That would help the most. Also, it's a 3.5L V6, not a 3.0. Unless it's a diesel... :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Okay, cool thanks. I'll see what I can do about taking a video or something tomorrow...If I can get it to start again ha! I figured the damage is already done, so running it isn't going to hurt anything else. The backfire/fire is just kind of freaky! ha.

Anything I need to know as far as pulling these valve covers? Pretty straight forward?
 

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Pull a timing belt cover and see if the belts tight. A bad/failing timing belt tensioner will sound almost exactly like a knock / dieing motor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Would that leave metal shavings in the oil pan though? That's what's really freaking me out about it all. I'll have to figure out how to pull that timing belt cover. These Jap cars are a whole new world to me. I do Jeeps and Pontiacs ha.
 

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TransAm79 said:
Okay, cool thanks. I'll see what I can do about taking a video or something tomorrow...If I can get it to start again ha! I figured the damage is already done, so running it isn't going to hurt anything else. The backfire/fire is just kind of freaky! ha.

Anything I need to know as far as pulling these valve covers? Pretty straight forward?
Depends on what you consider to be "damage". Sounds to me like there's a rod knocking (further evidence is the metal shavings in the pan), run it enough and the rod will bind and break, most likely destroying the block and crank both. As it is (if it's a rod making this noise), you might get by with simply turning the crank and oversize bearings.

Could also be a wrist pin, flat spot on the cam, broken valve spring, bent valve, cracked piston skirt, as well as about a gazillion other things...without anything more specific than "shavings and horrible clanking sound" it's impossible to do more than guess. But the shavings in the pan mean there is a serious problem somewhere, and with the severity of the noise, my first guess is rod bearing. If I'd been able to see the shavings, I probably could've told you exactly where they came from.
 

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It doesn't sound good, just from the description. If it is a rod bearing maybe the piston hit those valves and that's why it's backfiring. You could pull the plugs and put a long screw driver down each cylinder and turn the crank by hand and see if you could possibly find one that's slower to respond from tdc... Like Rhodes said if it's that bad already ,running it will further the damage if it's not toast already...
 

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If the noise doesn't go away when you rev it up, it isn't likely to be the timing belt tensioner. Ask him if he ever ran it "low" on oil. That's the leading cause of rod knock on these, and it's the #1 up front that fails first.

-Tad
 
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