Any - Identifying engine noises. - argybargy

Often difficult to diagnose, and even harder to convey to someone who hasn't heard the noise for themselves.

For example, I have a new clutch in my Powershift B Max. Its meant to overcome the notorious problems with this transmission, and as a result I'm ultra sensitive to any new sound.

Queueing at the local tip last weekend I suddenly heard a noise like combination of "low flying aircraft, whizzer cutting metal and Bluto's sewing machine". I looked around for the source of this horrible racket and everyone was looking at me. Turned out it was my car and I pulled up and switched off pronto. Didn't stop to think that I should have left the engine on till I'd worked out where it was coming from, but hey ho.

Called the dealer and booked it in for a shufty. Then it dawned on me that if if WASN'T clutch related, they could and would charge for diagnostics, so I had a look myself. The cooling fan blades show clear signs of having fouled on something, so I'm 75 per cent sure that's where the problem lies. Going to take it out tomorrow, simulate sitting in a queue of traffic, moving slowly and try to replicate. Hopefully it is the fan, because the indy garage where I bought the car should cover it.

I bet we all have tales of noises we thought were one thing (or maybe someone at a garage did) and they turned out to be something else entirely.

Any - Identifying engine noises. - Andrew-T

The unexpected noise I hear most often from my elderly car(s) is usually intermittent snarling from a dry alternator bearing. A few drops of light oil behind the fan-pulley and a squirt of WD40 usually quietens it for a few months.

Any - Identifying engine noises. - oldroverboy.

I often hear strange noises coming from the passenger seat. weird or what?

Any - Identifying engine noises. - SLO76

I often hear strange noises coming from the passenger seat. weird or what?

Every motor I’ve had in recent years suffers badly from this...
Any - Identifying engine noises. - Engineer Andy

I often hear strange noises coming from the passenger seat. weird or what?

Every motor I’ve had in recent years suffers badly from this...

Question: does it only happen who SWMBO is sitting there or when you're on your own?

My brother-in-law's old car seemed to suffer from this problem, though I'm not sure if his new one does, but then, I haven't been in the car as yet.


Any - Identifying engine noises. - badbusdriver

Just under a year ago, on the way to one of my furthest away area's of work, going along a section of dual carriageway this very alarming sounding thrashing noise started up. I slowed down and pulled over at the 1st opportunity and opened the bonnet. Couldn't see anything amiss, so i shuffled under the front as far as i could and shone a torch up. Low and behold, there was a strip torn off of, what i initially thought (in horror) was the drive belt, but turned out to be the fan belt. The strip was about 6" long, probably about a 1/4 of the width of the belt, and had obviously been thrashing about causing the racket i heard. I cut the loose bit off and carried on (about a mile) to the local garage in the village i was going to be working in. After conversing with the mechanic, i decided to chance working on through the day, and i would come back to the garage and have them fit a new fan belt fitted before i made the 30 mile journey home. Fortunately it didn't take too long (about 30mins) and wasn't particularly expensive (about £70).

Weirdly this did happen right after i had the van serviced and MOT'd at a local garage. Not sure if they might have inadvertently done something which might have caused it?

Any - Identifying engine noises. - Steveieb
Another tale involving a trip to the local tip, this time in my son's Transit. My partner was moving house and asked me to take a load of rubbish from her old house.
After five minutes I heard a loud bleeping noise coming from the load area.
Immediately assumed it was the parking sensor gone wrong and it continued right until I got to the tip.

The refuse lads were so annoyed by the noise, I called my indie who suggested locating the sounder and disconnecting it. But I couldn't find it!

I continued to empty the rubbish and suddenly noticed the noise got closer. Turned out that SWMBO had loaded an old smoke alarm which went off when the button was pressed by the other rubbish.

So relieved it wasn't anything serious that I would have to tell my son about!
Any - Identifying engine noises. - argybargy

Early days to be absolutely sure, but it seems that my "low flying aircraft noise" of last Sunday might be down to the technician at the Ford garage disconnecting the air con connection on the cooling fan, not reattaching it and leaving connector loose inside the fan shroud.

Being the time of year it is I haven't tried to use the aircon for a while ( I know: I should run it regularly) and neither had the cooling fan tried to run till the other day when I was stuck in a queue for 25 minutes. My fairly sound theory is that the fan has kicked in and the blades have hit this stray connector, causing the horrendous noise that I heard. I've reconnected whats left of it, and this morning I'll be checking whether both aircon and engine cooling connectors still work.

Meantime I also found the gearbox breather pipe flapping around under the bonnet, unrestricted by any attempt to clip it somewhere safe, and having checked online it seems that I just need to attach it to an immovable piece of metal or plastic to keep it out of the way.

And to think: I was ready to drive 30 miles back to the dealer and pay diagnostics to get it looked at.

Edited by argybargy on 22/11/2017 at 09:23

Any - Identifying engine noises. - CK91437

brings up images of the old VW ad, where the chap can't find where the noise is coming form, and it turns out to be his lady friend's earring.

If only it were true in real life..........

Any - Identifying engine noises. - badbusdriver

I did have another unidentified noise with the van. This one was even more frustrating/baffling/annoying because despite 2 seperate visits to the garage i use, they couldn't suss out what was causing it. And was something i had become increasingly aware of for at least 6 months up, to shortly after the fan belt being replaced. It wasn't really an intermittent noise as such, it wasn't 'random'. But at certain (regular) times it seemed to happen, and while it was sometimes very faint, at other times it was pretty loud. It was a ticking noise, which seemed to coincide with the wheels turning. From the drivers seat, it seemed to be (definately!) coming from the n/s front. Anyway, there was one day i'd started to work, but contrary to what the forecast said, the rain started in earnest. The noise had been particularly noticable on the way to where i had been working, so with it playing on my mind, i phoned the garage (again) to ask if they had time to have another look/listen. I should point out, that the mechanics had not actually heard the noise on either of the other 2 occasions i had asked them to investigate. I was told to come up, and all the way there i could hear the noise, to my ears, very loud!. Got there, the mechanic went out, came back and declared, again, that he couldn't hear anything!. Byt this time i was fit to burst and the boss suggested i take the van out, he would come with me and see if he could detect anything. I could hear the noise myself, though it was much quieter than it had been, but the owner of the garage wasn't so sure. Back at the garage, he put it up on the ramp again, for another look, 1st at the front n/s, then at the other 3 corners. After about 10 mins he shouted me over saying he had found a possible culprit, but not at the front, at the back. The handbrake cable was slightly loose and was very close to the n/s rear wheel, so close in fact, that it was catching on the balance weight on the inside of the wheel rim every time turned. He did point out that heat, length of run, weather, etc, could account for the fact that the noise was not constant. I was just delighted that it had been identified and sorted, though i am still baffled by why it sounded so much like it was coming from the front!


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