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ticking sound and engine shake

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Old 03-08-2009, 10:48 AM
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ticking sound and engine shake

Hello friends,

Have a ticking and idle engine shake.

Also noticing a slight power loss.

Switched out the plug wires yesterday, plugs, distro, rotor, and tfi are also all new.

shaking and power loss seemed a little better after the wire replacement, but still have the ticking from the engine.

Any thoughts? Could it be the valves, any easy way to know?

Thanks all
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Old 03-08-2009, 11:11 AM
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what year and engine would help. 2.9s are famous for lifter tick.. 2.8s tick as well but that`s due to having solid lifters.
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Old 03-08-2009, 11:16 AM
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Sorry man, '89 2.9..... 183k

Had not noticed the tick before a few days ago.
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Old 03-08-2009, 11:19 AM
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Do you have an oil pressure gauge or factory light? Gauges are an easy upgrade and help you monitor what`s going on in the engine..
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Old 03-08-2009, 03:24 PM
rebocardo rebocardo is offline
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Lifter tick is normal as the engines wear. Not really much you can do about it except sometimes switch to a syn 5w30 or a dino 15w-40. But, at 180k I would not bother.

As for the shaking, many times it is a dirty IAC or a vacuum leak.
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Old 03-08-2009, 09:03 PM
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Yeah, just the factory oil press gauge... there is a check engine light but for all I know it could be burnt out......

IAC? uh oh..... dont know what that is.....
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Old 03-08-2009, 11:47 PM
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Try putting about half a quart of marvels mystery oil into the engine oil, or a full quart if you feel brave.
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Old 03-09-2009, 05:37 AM
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IAC = Idle Air Control; it's the long thing wires plug into on the pass side of the upper intake. That, along with the throttle body are known for getting dirty and requiring cleaning. The EGR is also known for some quirks (if your setup has one). The stator and pickup can also be a contributor to loss of power, etc., as well as the MAP sensor, ECT, IAT, O2, and of course, vacuum leaks. Have you pulled codes to see if there are any CM or running codes? That might narrow it down. You may also want to check your motor / trans mounts to make sure they're okay.
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Old 03-20-2009, 07:47 PM
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Okay, I was getting a random bad vibration, like the IAC was going. Found the problem by accident, it was a bad ground.

Near the horn there is a ground wire held to the radiator support by a sheet metal screw. 20 years of rusting let the screw loosen until it was falling out, even screwed in it was loose.

Solution was a grade 8, 1/4" bolt, with a serrated 3/8" cap head with 1.5" of thread.

Drill a hole through the original hole 9/32" wide. Insert from front and use the holes on both sides and a finger from each hand to guide it through the hole. Then put on the ground eyelet (drill out to 9/32), followed by flat washer, followed by serrated nut.

Put a wrench on the bolt head through the hole on the left hand side near the radiator support bolt, tighten from nut side, take wrench off bolt, turn a bit with nut to seat the bolt head, put wrench back on, finishing tighten nut.

With the extra thread, you can add further grounds to this point by putting another 1/4" nut on the bolt.

This cured the random idle shake and it appears it cured my faulty fuel gauge too :-)
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Old 03-21-2009, 07:16 AM
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Yep. These things are also notorious for bad-ground-connection-induced problems. I am going to be going through mine with a fine-toothed comb sometime in the future and probably also replace my battery cables with something a little beefier. May also upgrade the alternator and battery while at it.

I just noticed I never addressed the tick issue. Could be lifter or injector tick. Lifter tick is normal - especially when it's close to changing your 'dino' oil and filter. My solution to keep it to only that was to do an engine flush every oil change and use 5W-30 oil, Rislone engine treatment, and Purolator filter. I've since changed over to using Amsoil 5W-30 and their high-efficiency filter in hopes of decreasing the number of complete oil changes I do on my trucks as well as the added benefit of them running 'greener' due to less hydrocarbon buildup from the PCV system.
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Old 03-21-2009, 09:25 AM
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On my 2.9, the injector ticking is fairly soft. Almost like the sound a cell-phone button makes when you press it, like a fairly audible mechanical watch tick. While lifter ticking sounds more like someone hitting the side of the engine block with a piece of metal, and is quite loud. (Mine only has lifter tick for a few seconds if its been sitting for a few months, goes completely away as long as you run it every so often)
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Old 03-22-2009, 07:54 AM
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Lead Head, what grade oil and what filter are you using? Not sure if just before I arrived on leave at my aunt's if they started up both trucks or not, but even if mine had sat a couple of days, I had zero tick on start-up (and it was OVERDUE for an oil change) --- like I normally had when using 20W-50, 10W-30, or 10W-40... and Fram filters. Heck, before I switched over to Purolator filters, if it sat overnight or for more than a few hours, it would have start-up lifter tick - especially when it was close to needing and oil change. I would have to say that the lifter tick I had is pretty much gone since switching to the Ford originally recommended oil (5W-30), using the Rislone and Purolator filter and doing several engine flushes in the process. I'm looking forward to seeing how well the Amsoil products work - and if I maintain little to no tick with the extended time between complete oil changes, then I'll never switch back to conventional oil. Mine BII has over 160K on the clock (if memory serves), but only between 50 and 75 percent of that on the engine. 1st owner had bought it to tow behind his RV on road trips so he could unhook and tool around in the BII and the driveshaft was never removed - which is why the drivetrain essentially has more mileage on it than the engine.
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Old 03-22-2009, 06:52 PM
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I'm running 10w30 and an STP Oil filter. Its got 146.5k on it. It was sitting for about 4-5 years until my father gave it to me. As long as I start it every month or so (still waiting on some parts, so its not drivable yet) it won't tick.
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Old 03-23-2009, 04:58 AM
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Lead - I would consider starting it up more often than that and keeping the gas tank freshened up and topped off. Otherwise, you could be asking for potential problems - one in particular is the battery going south - unless, of course you keep yours on a trickle charge and only connect it up to start it and run the engine up to temp. I think other than 5W-30, 10W-30 was the 'quietest' oil I used - even in my 2.0L Lima 4-cyl Ranger. I think part of the big help in reduction of the lifter tick was all the engine flushes I did (even though some will disagree with that) and switching over to the Purolator filter prior to my recent switch to Amsoil products. Seemed like even the cheapest of the Frams still contributed to my lifter tick during start-up or otherwise.

Anyhow, good luck on getting your truck back on the road and looking good again
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