Cherokee XJ 4.0 i6 lifter tick

syncview

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What can one do about the noise of the lifters?
How can I make sure that why are they creating such a noise..

its like, loud when started up in the morning.. gets quieter when the engine is at operating temp.. but doesn't go away.. depends on the RPMs of the engine.. the higher the RPM, the higher the frequency of the ticking.

I had a quick chat with the mechanic, he said he is not exactly sure.. and that it could also be because of a weak engine oil pump.. I'm going to the mechanic today so I should have some information at hand.. you know.. Need some ideas..

The head was rebuild a few thousand kilometers ago.. and it needed some new piston rings and things.. and valves..

I want to know so I don't get confused there and / or get ripped off :p
Also recommend solutions to overcome the problem, if there are any at all to make the noise go away. Except 'replacing the assembly etc etc' lol.


Thanks.
 

JipJopJones

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Well, If it is the lifters for sure, you can pour about 1/3 of a quart of ATF into the oil. It should make the noise stop after a few hours of operating.

The oil pressure on a 4.0l should be about 32psi (give or take 1 or 2) at idle. So if it is a weak oil pump it would probably be less. Although, you may need warm the car up significantly before you get an accureate pressure reading. The 4.0l is infamous for sudden loss of oil pressure at idle after long highway drives. This would indicate a weak oil pump.
 

syncview

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^about 220,000 kilometers on the engine.. total.. same on the pump I assume. I bought the Jeep at about 160K kms



JipJopJones: Should I keep the ATF in or should the oil be changed? How many kilometers should I drive after I put the ATF in and also.. Should I actually ADD ATF or drain out some engine oil (1/3 quarts) before adding 1/3 quarts of ATF?

Also, give me an idea as to how to get a pressure reading.

and thanks!


On to the FSM!
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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When testing the oil pressure, I recommend using a purpose-designed pressure tester - your mechanic should have one. The one on the dash is OK, but it's not the most accurate thing in the world. When was the last time the lifters/valve lash was adjusted?
 

syncview

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err.. I dunno.. are they even adjustable on the 4.0? I'm an idiot at this so don't mind please.. and the in-dash oil pressure guage doesn't work :p

And uh, since I've bought it, haven't done anything regarding the adjustment of the lifters / valve lash as far as I know.
 
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Polygon

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^about 220,000 kilometers on the engine.. total.. same on the pump I assume. I bought the Jeep at about 160K kms

JipJopJones: Should I keep the ATF in or should the oil be changed? How many kilometers should I drive after I put the ATF in and also.. Should I actually ADD ATF or drain out some engine oil (1/3 quarts) before adding 1/3 quarts of ATF?

Also, give me an idea as to how to get a pressure reading.

and thanks!


On to the FSM!

So, about 136,000 miles. It's entirely possible it has an issue, but at the same time it wouldn't be a mileage that would overly concern me. There could also be something in the system, blocking the flow.

As for the ATF, only leave it in there for about 10-20 min at idle. Do not drive it. Then drain and change the oil and filter. ATF is full of detergents that help clean, but I don't think that's your issue. Also, ATF is much thinner than oil and offer little protection.
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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OK, just to rule out anything before you start messing with your head, do you have access to an automotive stethoscope? If you use one, you should be able to pinpoint where the noise is strongest, which can help diagnose the issue. The tick you describe can also be attributed to a cracked exhaust header, a somewhat common issue on the 4.0L. The stethoscope should let you determine whether the sound is coming from the head or the manifold.

I would also recommend doing a search in the XJ Technical Forum section of JeepForum, there's TONS of threads about ticking 4.0s.

Also, is it louder under the hood, or in the cabin? If it's louder in the cabin than under the hood, it may be the evaporator condenser solenoid, it can make an annoying, constant or intermittent, and sometimes startlingly loud knocking noise when it goes bad.
 
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JipJopJones

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I'd also get your oil pressure gauge fixed. Definetly a valualbe instument on the dash.
The oil pumps tend to start going at 175000kms on the 4.0l so chances are yours is hooped.

I'd say fix the gauge and get a new pump. Those would be the first things I would deal with. Worry about the ticking afterwards.

As for the ATF. You could do what polygon said. But if your oil pressure is low, I'm not sure that I would want to have my engine idling for half an hour with such low oil psi.
I've also always just been told to add it on top of the oil already in there and to leave it in and it will burn off. But I could be wrong. You might want to look into it.
 

syncview

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BCS: Its not the evaporator solenoid.. i checked and made sure..
its coming from the hood not the cabin..

Tomorrow morning, I will be going to the mech and get it checked thoroughly.. meanwhile, is there an alternative to the 'automotive stethoscope'? :p


JJJ: First thing I'll do is check the oil pressure, see what the mech says and will let you guys know. In the meanwhile, I will ask him to put on a new oil pressure sender unit and the oil pump.
 
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Polygon

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I'd also get your oil pressure gauge fixed. Definetly a valualbe instument on the dash.
The oil pumps tend to start going at 175000kms on the 4.0l so chances are yours is hooped.

I'd say fix the gauge and get a new pump. Those would be the first things I would deal with. Worry about the ticking afterwards.

As for the ATF. You could do what polygon said. But if your oil pressure is low, I'm not sure that I would want to have my engine idling for half an hour with such low oil psi.
I've also always just been told to add it on top of the oil already in there and to leave it in and it will burn off. But I could be wrong. You might want to look into it.

I did not know that the 4L pumps stated to go that quick. Good point though, I completely forgot about that. I wouldn't run ATF in an engine with a suspect pump/pressure issue. However, I would only use ATF to try and clean out the lifters which I don't believe is your issue.

Good luck with the mechanic.
 

JipJopJones

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I did not know that the 4L pumps stated to go that quick. Good point though, I completely forgot about that. I wouldn't run ATF in an engine with a suspect pump/pressure issue. However, I would only use ATF to try and clean out the lifters which I don't believe is your issue.

Good luck with the mechanic.

Yah, they do go quite early. It's the one thing that really frustrates me about them. (that and their tendacy to leak oil everywhere) Otherwise they are one of the greatest motors ever.
 

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JipJopJones

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So what ended up being the problem?
 

syncview

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Its the lifters themselves.. according to the mech.. oil pressure has yet to be checked.. but the mechanic says he is sure that its the lifters and he also checked with a metal rod putting it on top and the sides of the valve cover. (which I didn't quite get what he was doing)

How do we check the oil pressure btw.. I need an idea so I would the buy the right gauge for the car.. my in dash gauge is also not working and I'm having a hard time finding the oil pressure sender unit here.

The mech says that there is no other solution except to change them. He also said to just run them till they are done.
 
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JipJopJones

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Jeep-Cherokee-oil-pressure-.jpg

This is what the sending unit looks like... it's about the size of a tennis ball. (maybe a bit smaller)
I forget where it is and it's too dark out right now to go check on my Jeep... but It's pretty obvious when you see it. Just search around for a while.

Do you mean the in dash gauge? You can either get an aftermarket one or a OEM one, but chances are it's not the gauge... it's probably the sending unit.
 
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syncview

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its not the in-dash that is not working, its the sending unit. The one which came with was not working and leaking as well, so I put in a sending unit which was from a hilux and fitted perfectly, but obviously, it doesn't work with the gauge. Its fitted over (almost) the oil filter.


I was asking that how can I check the oil pressure with an external gauge if I buy one?

What about the clunking noise you were experiencing with your Cherokee?
 
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JipJopJones

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Ah, I see... I'm not sure how to do that. I imagine you'd have to buy some sort of gauge that screws into the same spot as the sending unit. Sorry. I've never done it before.

The clunking was as expected. Trans/motor mounts. I'll be replacing them soon. I just don't have the means to do it right now. Hopefully I'll be able to get it done before it gets really cold though.
 

BerserkerCatSplat

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he also checked with a metal rod putting it on top and the sides of the valve cover. (which I didn't quite get what he was doing)

Sounds like he used the stethoscope I was talking about earlier.

its not the in-dash that is not working, its the sending unit. The one which came with was not working and leaking as well, so I put in a sending unit which was from a hilux and fitted perfectly, but obviously, it doesn't work with the gauge. Its fitted over (almost) the oil filter.


I was asking that how can I check the oil pressure with an external gauge if I buy one?

First, if you're going to replace the sending unit, use the correct unit as it's what your dash gauge is calibrated for. You can get one from any auto parts store, and they're cheap.

To check the pressure with a mechanical gauge, you remove the sending unit and screw the mechanical unit into the port the sending unit was screwed into.
 

syncview

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The problem is, Jeep Cherokee, is something unheard of here. They came here in 1996 and had a few showrooms but failed miserably. Because Toyota is everything here, you see Corollas, Camrys, LCs, Prados, Hiaces, Hiux.. and many other Toyota cars just because they are 'reliable' and 'economical' according to the people. People buy either small economical petrol cars.. or buy 4x4s or Vans with diesel engine. 4x4 with a huge petrol engine was something new here, even NOWADAYS! when people / small time mechanics see the long six-cylinder growling in their garage they make sure about 5 times if its a diesel or a petrol. Even when they can see the spark plug wires going onto the plugs. Whenever I go to a gas station, same thing, they ask like atleast TWO times before putting in Petrol.
1800cc petrol engine is still regarded as a hungry engine. 660 to 1000 ccs being economical. People who are petrolheads, well, don't care about anything. There are many mechanics that work on rare cars here, like the Cherokee, most BMWs, Range Rovers.. my mechanic works on almost all cars and have parts in stock for most of them. Used parts, but imported in containers and so therefore CHEAP. The problem is, last time he didn't have an idea about my oil pressure sender unit :p He also imports accidented cars and part them out.

I'm on a lookout for a sender unit and a few of my fellows and my mechanic are on a lookout, as soon as anything comes up, they'll call me. And well, importing one isn't an option since a $50 part and $50 shipping would cost me $165 because of the stupid customs. And I'm not going to pay $165 for something that costs $50, unless it is REALLY REALLY needed.
 
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