Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound - Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum
Problems / Dealer Service If you are having a problem with your FJ or want to discuss a visit to the service department, post it here.

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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 01:28 PM Thread Starter
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Hi guys, I've recently acquired a 2015 FJ cruiser auto in Australia with 75000km and done around 3000km since buying it and recently I've noticed a ticking noise, kinda like a diesel ticking/clacking/knocking noise. I can hear mine in the cabin when idling and can hear the knocking/clacking/heavy ticking noise especially beside the car on drivers and passenger side and near wheel well area even several metres away. Sometimes it's quieter, sometimes its louder and does it when idling without load. Tapping noise is slow when on load like in drive and faster when idling without load in park or neutral. Also noticeable at slow speeds accelerating and decelerating around the 1000 to 1500rpm range. Does anyone elses FJ do this? Is it the infamous toyota tick so no need to worry or is it something more sinister?

Anyone able to help me out with an opinion/answer by comparing it to their FJ regarding the diesel like clacking/ticking/knocking noise?

I have tried the rubber o-ring isolation fix for the pwm vaccuum thingy but it's not that as I tried both rubber o-ring and even letting it dangle. I did have a good listen to what that pwm valve thingy sounds like but its different and sounds more like puffing sounds more than the diesel clacking sounds so it doesnt seem like that is the cause of the clacking/low db ticking sound.

I've visited a few dealers and listened to their Fj's of varying year models and km's ranging from 60,000km up to 112,000km and result of the sound comparisons vary. Every other sound aside from the problematic diesel like clatter is the same with all vehicles but the intensity and volume of the diesel like clatter varies a fair bit and annoyingly, mine seems to be the loudest. Mine you can hear from a couple meters away idling whereas the others its harder to hear but is there is you really know what sound you are listening out for. *sigh* Spoke to one of the dealer managers about one of their FJ's that I listened to that was much quieter than mine and he says the sound is normal and is from the injectors and says the 4.0 v6 is the strongest toyota engine you can get. Other than the noise, it drives just like the others, no difference. Also looked and listened to countless youtube vids of the 1gr-fe engine in various models of Toyota and the majority sound the same/similar. So short of taking it to various places to get looked at, should I just accept that its a noisy engine and just enjoy the thing? (Others on the internet forums and youtube vid replies generally say they have this sound(s) either since new ownership or from when they acquired it and others say initially nil diesel like clatter then suddenly from 50000km or so it started but hasnt caused other issues aside from the noise and many comment saying theirs has done this since xx,xxxmiles and now xxx,xxxmiles and still going strong with nil ill effects with general consensus is that it's just a noisy engine and not to worry).

I've uploaded a recording of mine to youtube so please have a listen and fingers crossed its normal? The engine was already warmed up from earlier driving. I've walked around the car from below the side sills to next to the front wheels to the front and then to the passenger side wheel arch and beneath passenger door/sill area. Generally video taken about 0.5-1 metre away from the car. Also popped the bonnet to capture engine bay sounds.

https://youtu.be/d0GeC4UOZwg


Another close example is this video especially under the car and on the side...only mine isn't a manual so ignore the any throw out bearing sounds:


I just hope mine isn't leading towards or early signs of rod knock or thrown bearing like in this instance for the OP in their thread:

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/foru...-solenoid.html

Corresponding video is here:

Many thanks in advance for your help.

Last edited by cool-fj; 05-04-2019 at 02:42 AM.
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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 03:57 PM
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Re: Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound

Not much help but, the engine is noisey.

This was one of my first concerns also. I was told by a friend it sounded like injectors to him. The dealer may be correct.

Noise hasn't changed in 60,000 miles. Has yours changed since you've had it?

I'm sure more input to come from members...

edit: I even changed to 5W-30 oil, didn't change a thing..

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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 05:59 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound

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Not much help but, the engine is noisey.

This was one of my first concerns also. I was told by a friend it sounded like injectors to him. The dealer may be correct.

Noise hasn't changed in 60,000 miles. Has yours changed since you've had it?

I'm sure more input to come from members...

edit: I even changed to 5W-30 oil, didn't change a thing..
Hi Lee44, I made an error in the above post about the dealer manager part. I've fixed it up. What I meant to say was I spoke to him about one of their FJ's engine diesel like clacking sound (which was still quieter than mine).
The Toyota dealer put in 10w30 Toyota genuine oil (supposedly) and I'm considering changing the oil to Castrol Edge 5w30 oil to give it a try.
I've only had mine for around just over 3000km so around 2000miles. In terms of changes to the sound since, I think it has gotten a little bit pronounced in the tapping/knocking sound at times but generally the diesel type clatter was there.

Last edited by cool-fj; 05-04-2019 at 08:37 AM.
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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 06:14 PM
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Re: Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound

The FJ doesn't have the quietest engine . My 14 sounds similar. Runs perfect.

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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-04-2019, 08:35 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound

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The FJ doesn't have the quietest engine . My 14 sounds similar. Runs perfect.
Hi Bad Wolf, thanks for your reply and input. Much appreciated. Definately agree that the FJ engine isn't the quietest. Mine's a 2015 and aside from the worrying noise, it runs perfectly fine.
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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-09-2019, 05:29 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound

So update, got the car back from the dealer and their opinion is its normal but just a tad louder than usual and they think some FJ's are louder than others and to monitor and take it back to them if it gets louder or becomes an issue. They said because it's been noted during the stat warranty period if anything happens later on they will fix it. Fingers crossed they keep their word and so for now here's hoping it is indeed normal and won't ever become an issue. Just wanted to do this update for completeness sake.
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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-09-2019, 07:26 PM
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Re: Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound

IMO that is not a normal noise. I would suggest having the timing chain stretch/ slack checked.(possibly a tensioner is stuck closed, or guide broken) Hard to tell from video, personally I would not be driving this until the cause was found. The next step after this noise will not be good.
From what I hear in the video, this is much more than injector noise.

Just one opinion, with not a lot of 4.0 exp, but lots of engines in general over the years

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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-09-2019, 07:28 PM
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Re: Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound

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cool-fj previously said: View Post
So update, got the car back from the dealer and their opinion is its normal but just a tad louder than usual and they think some FJ's are louder than others and to monitor and take it back to them if it gets louder or becomes an issue. They said because it's been noted during the stat warranty period if anything happens later on they will fix it. Fingers crossed they keep their word and so for now here's hoping it is indeed normal and won't ever become an issue. Just wanted to do this update for completeness sake.
I would want to have that in writing , and hopefully the warranty period is a good length, not 30 days.
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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 09:43 AM Thread Starter
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Since my last post after getting the response from the selling dealer, a week later I took my car to my local Toyota dealer for a diagnostic session and they said tapping knocking noise is evident and from internal and recommended me to take it back to selling dealer to get it investigated further. They also told me verbally ‘its not normal’ and sound is from bottom end. So i took it back to the selling dealer for a second time and they took it to their local Toyota dealer. So after the long anxious wait, I finally get the call and the selling dealer (non Toyota) said they took my car down to their local Toyota dealer to have a look and they came back saying the tapping noise is from the valvetrain and is 'slightly louder' than normal BUT 'not excessive' and not recommend pulling engine apart at this point. So as a result, the selling dealer said they can't do anything about it now. They said if the Toyota dealer said recommended to investigate further then they would have authorised it. So despite one Toyota dealer saying its abnormal 'verbally' and from bottom end 'again verbally' and only wrote it up as tapping/knocking evident and internal and suggested to take it back to selling dealer for investigation, it wasn't specific as they were not able to pull the engine apart and the second Toyota dealer now says its not worth pulling engine apart to investigate further as its only slighter louder than normal for this v6 engine but not 'excessively loud' and they supposedly told my selling dealer that 9 out of 10 FJ's do that and some are louder than others. The selling dealer said they wished something went wrong so it was extremely obvious but in this instance they have their hands tied and cant go further as they are basing advice of Toyota. Sigh.........Only thing now is to just hope and pray it's supposedly indeed normal and the engine is fine. Selling dealer did say that if anything bad does eventuate in the next several months then they will 'look after me'. So here's to hoping the FJ is indeed 'normal' and lasts the lifetime I own it for. But of course none of the dealers are willing to write ‘normal’ on their reports either.
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post #10 of 36 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 12:21 PM
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Re: Help - Engine knocking or tapping sound

As @Little Joe said, "I would want to have that in writing". Good luck.
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