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Hello all,

Had head gasket done a few weeks ago and now the engine has developed a very annoying tapping noise. 1998 2.3T 9000 anni. Wasn't there straight after the heazd was done but is now. Sounds like it's from the top of the engine. Oil level is fine. Changes a bit when engine warm but still there.

Are these connected - head gasket and noise ?

Will I do damage driving it like this ?

Whats the solution and how much should it cost ?

Feel like driving it into a wall at the moment. Just spent £1100 a month or so back sorting things and still problems !

Oh well.

Hope you guys can help.

Thanks
 

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It could be one of the hydraulic lifters has got an air block. It may clear with driving but try not to exceed 3000rpm. IIRC they can be primed by slackening off the inner camshell bolts whilst cranking a warm engine with the DI/fuel pump disabled, but you'd need someone who's done this before.

The alternative I would suggest is to use an engine flush and run it at normal, perhaps even fast, idle until the noise disappears then change the oil. Out of interest what grade of oil is in there now?
 

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I was asked to look at a similar problem a few years ago. I can't recall what work had been done on the engine but he was convinced it was a tappet, and so was I at first, until I got my listening pipe out. It was actually a leak from the exhaust manifold / head joint.
Fixed in the usual manner - new gasket and/or tighten, I think.
Seemples!
So - it might not be a disaster.
 

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Charliek72,

I would go with Dave's prognosis. Many of us have chased a phanton mechanical tapping only to find it's a slight exhaust manifold gasket leak. Since the head has just been off, and I presume had a complete set of new gaskets fitted it should just be a case of 'nipping up' the manifold nuts around the leak.

Now here's the not so good news. You say you 'had the head gasket done'. Can we assume that this was by a garage. If so then did they mention any problem with exhaust manifold studs breaking. Given the age of all our 9000s these are a bit prone to serious corrosion and shearing off when you look at them sideways with a spanner. ( There are a myriad of threads on sheared studs, angle drive drills, tungsten blah blah, nodrillium, etc. )

It may be that a stud snapped during the head job and has not been replaced. If that is the case then take it back to the garage who did the head job and ask them to sort it. Of course it still could be that the gasket just needs 'nipped up' after the heat / cool cycles since you had the job done. Might be worth getting the garage to do that anyway, since, if one snaps it's down to them !

Paul @ Kippen.
 
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