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Clattering noise

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  • Clattering noise

    Hi guys,

    Looking for advice here.

    My Smart has all of sudden (completely out of the blue) started making a very loud clattering noise, the noise is present at idle and when driving (in gear) - when at idle if I rev the slowly car (in neutral) the noise seems to go away though if I plant my foot on the accelerator it makes a slight noise but not a (clattering noise) as the revs build.

    No blue smoke or anything untoward out of the tail pipe, last week I changed both rear engine mounts as they where getting tired - front one is only three years old and has the Powerflex insert, I also do an oil service every two thousand miles and I just changed the oil last week on it. I went over it with a socket extension to my ear and it appears to be centred around cylinder two in the cylinder head (not 100% certain though).

    I've uploaded a video of the noise from the car to - as I can't attach a video file here:

    Has anyone come across something similar to this before, hoping maybe Tolsen has and has some advice?

  • #2
    Could noise come from loose heat shield?


    • #3
      Thanks Tolsen, I'm looking to drop the sub-frame at the weekend to take a closer look but I'll check the heat shield first off before I start pulling it apart


      • #4
        So I checked the heat shield and it was secure although some gorilla previous to my ownership has managed to round the head completely off on the bolt for it. So I removed the spark plugs and got a borescope in each of the bores in turn which all look fine although, when turning the engine over with a ratchet spanner on the crank (clockwise) I was feeling it being stiff for a couple of ratchets then it would become free moving (literally rotate on its own almost like free wheeling) before it became stiff again

        So took the gearbox off and the clutch off, clutch looks ok to my untrained eyes with no visible damage and nothing appears loose or rattles on it - I did notice that the plate the clutch bolts to on the engine has play in it moving the plate towards and away from the engine even though the bolts for it are done up tight. I tried rotating the crank again and got the same feeling as before, stiff for a couple of ratchets then is free before stiffening up again.

        At this point I took the sump off to check for anything being in there and found nothing, the remaining oil in the sump had no particulates in it at all and no metal fragments in the sump yet the engine doesn't turn freely - I'm guessing at this point its either rod bearings, crank bearings or maybe a warped crank (if that can at all happen) but can't understand how it just come out of nowhere


        • #5
          Have you tried taking the drive belts off? The reason I ask is that I've just had the bearing seize on my water pump stopping the engine turn over. But for the previous month or so I've had a vibration when I accelerated hard. It sounded like the front engine mount had failed & the engine was hitting something. Just a thought.


          • #6
            So I spent some further time on the car over the weekend and it turns out that my crank to flywheel plate is split all the way round.

            I've managed to get the stronger version off of eBay and so I'm going to put it back together and hope for the best.

            One question I do have is how can I get the car to turnover without firing (so it can build oil pressure), are there fuses I can pull for the fuel pump and injectors?
            Attached Files


            • #7
              Pull fuse # 16 to disable fuel pump.


              • #8
                Awesome, thanks Thrumbleux


                • #9
                  So, finally got the car back together again and replaced the following:

                  Crankshaft seal
                  Flywheel to crank plate
                  Gearbox seal
                  Sump (with drain plug)
                  Both rear engine mounts

                  Hand cranked the engine first six times to get some oil thought it, pulled the fuse for the fuel pump and spun it on the starter four times and then replaced the fuse and fired it up.

                  Car started first time and runs without any issues at all, heat cycled it three times with a piece of cardboard under it to check for leaks and no leaks.

                  Took it for a quick drive round some twisty roads and noticed that I have an oil leak from the sump on the crank pulley side somewhere above the normal level of the oil - oil got onto the crank pulley and flung it everywhere.

                  Question I have is can I additionally seal the sump in situ above where the oil normally sits if I go round it with some degreaser or do I have to take it completely off again?

                  I'm using Loctite SI 5926 to seal it, is there some other sealant that people recommend that is more suitable?


                  • #10
                    I think you'll have to take the sump off.
                    I've never used sealant on the sump (but used Dirko Grey with good results elsewhere) but used one of Evolution's rubber gasket fitted dry. No leaks.


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