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2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise


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marshmallowe
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Oct 22, 2012, 9:56 PM

Post #1 of 12 (1717 views)
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Okay so I just got my first car from a family friend who tows cars. It's a 2003 Pontiac Montana, he had told me the only thing wrong with it was it needed a battery and an oil change. I got a new battery for it will be changing the oil tomorrow. Now then it has this almost knocking noise coming from the engine... I am hoping it's not piston whip... My uncle said it may just be because the oil is very disgusting, also the previous owner must not have cared for the car much as there is to much oil in the tank right now. It also needs new transmission fluid and antifreeze. It has 202,000 miles on it so it's been around. Guy at the shop recommended Marvel mystery oil to add while doing the oil change. The serpentine belt also looks pretty worn wonder if the noise could be coming from that as well. Any ideas of what the noise could be?


Tom Greenleaf
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Oct 23, 2012, 8:22 AM

Post #2 of 12 (1672 views)
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Re: 2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise [In reply to] Sign In

First car - it isn't easy or cheap anyway but neglected 202,000 miles is a potential lost cause hate to say it. People struggle to get that out of vehicles with the best of care which costs along the way also.

Forget the Marvel Mystery oil as it is just a thinner oil with solvents about like using 1/2 engine oil and !/2 transmission fluid that kinda broke up varnish and sludge some which just changing the oil with a decent oil will do if it can AND if it is just minor. Real worn parts don't heal. Piston "slap" if that's what you meant was a dull knock especially when cold that would go away when piston skirts are worn under spec along with cylinder walls out of spec. As said that exact problem in early stages goes away when warmed up or would decrease. I don't think you have anyone hearing that, that could come to that conclusion and if from wear w neglect why would it only be that?

How far do you want to go with this and what is your pain tolerance for some pretty nasty expensive work? The shop or tech that suggested just to add magic oil to it is not indicative of professional advice IMO.

Just change the oil and check all items listed on that routine service and if noise doesn't quickly go away get a professional diagnosis on just what that/those noises are as it could be a replacement engine! Still leaves the whole rest of the vehicle to tend to which you would do with any or should if there's a bright future for this one.

Wish you luck, just be careful how much you spend on it before knowing more about it's real condition,

T
_________________________________________
Long retired now


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Oct 23, 2012, 10:59 AM

Post #3 of 12 (1663 views)
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Re: 2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise [In reply to] Sign In

I wouldn't be running anything but engine oil through a motor that has that many miles. All you can do is more damage and definitely not more that 1 quart of ATF if it's used at all and then it should be drained out shortly after but not at all in an engine with that many miles.




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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



Tom Greenleaf
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Oct 23, 2012, 11:12 AM

Post #4 of 12 (1657 views)
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Re: 2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise [In reply to] Sign In

Yes - that ATF deal can work. Haven't done that yet but the nature of ATF is highly detergent and thinner oil. What always scares me if limited to just minor sludge and valve-train ticking (not knocks) is too much sludge-fudge moving too fast making it totally cease lubricating something that might have survived otherwise. This is if this is a sludge caused issue.

Beware of magic in a bottle stuff as some can wreck things. As HT said, miles or not just the new oil should be fine and do its job as much as it can,

T
_________________________________________
Long retired now


marshmallowe
New User

Oct 23, 2012, 1:42 PM

Post #5 of 12 (1646 views)
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Re: 2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise [In reply to] Sign In

I figured the guy was wrong he was trying to get me to put transmission fluid in the oil as well. and yes piston slap, sorry not much known about cars have a few family members who are mechanics, whip and slap got stuck in my head. Yeah I really don't have a lot of money to put into it, it was a family friend who sold it to me so I assumed nothing severe would be wrong with, I didn't even question them. And when I checked it saw the mileage and the noise from the engine I got worried. The battery was dead when it arrived, so replaced that, I will change the oil today and post if it sounds better or not. I know any used car would need some investment, but I wasn't expecting engine problems. Over all I am worried the previous owner drove it to the ground, It needs a bit of everything, new tire, antifreeze, oil I even had to buy new fuses there were very few in there, there's even duct tape covering a hose! I know it was in a wreck as well because the back hatch is white while the rest of the car is gold. My plan is to change the oil, hope it will sound a bit better then get a all points diagnostic done, I will keep you updated, thank you for all of the advice.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Oct 23, 2012, 2:30 PM

Post #6 of 12 (1639 views)
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Yes, ATF has a lot of detergent in it and it will break up sludge which in itself can be a bad thing sometimes but the ATF has almost no lubricating properties and can do a lot of harm to the engine when substituted for engine oil in some situations.




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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



marshmallowe
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Oct 29, 2012, 6:28 PM

Post #7 of 12 (1587 views)
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Re: 2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise [In reply to] Sign In

Well I took her up to the shop and they told me it needs a new engine, they have one used with 50,000 miles on it, it would cost 2,700 for them to install it, I do not have the money to spend right now. But kelly blue book value for my car at 50,000 miles is $6,400. I've spent a total of 1,000 right now as we speak, would it be worth it to invest that $2,700 into the van? The exterior is very nice as well as the interior and everything looks and acts like new asides from the engine. Mechanics at the shop said the same and advised for the new engine and understood me not having the money to dispose.


Hammer Time
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Oct 29, 2012, 7:05 PM

Post #8 of 12 (1583 views)
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Quote
But kelly blue book value for my car at 50,000 miles is $6,400



Hahaha................... Installing a used engine in your car does not erase 150,000 miles. You still have a 200K car.




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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



nickwarner
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Oct 29, 2012, 8:20 PM

Post #9 of 12 (1578 views)
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Re: 2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise [In reply to] Sign In

Yep, the mileage is on the van. Engine miles don't matter one bit for book value. If you're wondering what happened inside this, check out this vid below. Its a three part one but you'll find them when the first section is over. This isn't going to be feasible to do to your van at a shop because of how your chassis is situated. Working on that engine in that chassis is a real....... female dog.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KC-SxrsgEwo

Bear in mind this car was also running about half the mileage as your van.


Tom Greenleaf
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Oct 29, 2012, 11:09 PM

Post #10 of 12 (1571 views)
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Re: 2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise [In reply to] Sign In

Ditto - miles is whole car for valuation. Abused engine so what else was abused in this case? Cut losses and find another is my call and tell that "friend" to stuff it - nice of him to tell you it's fine huh? Bummer for you but a learning experience. Check things out first. Even then some things can pop up.

Think of the whole vehicle in its huge areas, engine, transmission, suspension, steering parts, brakes, body and interior, emissions, heat and air conditioning and another 10,000 things,

T
_________________________________________
Long retired now


MarineGrunt
Enthusiast
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Oct 30, 2012, 8:32 AM

Post #11 of 12 (1558 views)
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Re: 2003 pontiac montana Engine rattling/knocking noise [In reply to] Sign In

Like the others said, putting an engine in a vehicle that has 202k just isn't worth it. Honestly, for $3000, you could find a somewhat decent car. In this economy, if you keep your eye open, you can sometimes find a car priced well below blue book. A few months ago I bought a 2003 GMC Sierra ext cab 4x4 for $4200. It only has 80,000 miles on it. Granted, it did need a few things done to it but not including tires, I put around $600 into it. I also had to drive 3 hours to get it. If I wouldn't have put in a new ac compressor, which I didn't have to have, I only would've put in around $400. Go to Kelly Blue Book or NADA and check the value of my Sierra. You will see how good of a deal I got. If you have time to look around, you too can find a good deal. You just have to check craiglist on a daily basis multiple times a day. The bargains do go fast so have cash on hand ready to go. My sister has a 2001 Dodge Stratus with a 140,000 miles for $1800. That gives you an idea of what else is out there. Keep your eye open and use that $2700 for a different vehicle that wasn't abused. Ask to see the service records. Not everyone does it but many keep a record of oil changes and everything else that was serviced on the car. That will show how well it was taken care of.

By the way, tow that van and leave it in your family friend's front yard. While you're at, knock on his front door and kick him square in the nuts.


nickwarner
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Oct 30, 2012, 7:56 PM

Post #12 of 12 (1543 views)
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Wear really pointy shoes when you do it. He screwed you.




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