Brief engine clatter after a long trip - if not chains, what is it?

TrinidadLR4

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Just got back from a 2.5hr trip which included all highway driving and one high power, high speed uphill run. Approaching the garage, noticed the engine is clattering. and clattering significantly. A rhythmic loud ticking, rev-dependent - sounds a LOT like failing rod bearings on a v8 BMW(ask me how I know). Stop the car, put it in neutral, it mostly goes away. Put it back in gear to back into garage and it starts clattering again, just quieter than before. Shut the engine off, wait a few seconds, restart it. No more clatter, quiet as always. Engine has always been relatively quiet(for a 5.0), with no untoward clatter ever. 2013, 113k, 5k oil changes with Castrol 5w20. Checked oil level, it's midway. No codes. Drove around the block after restarting, engine is normal, runs like always. Sure as **** sounded like chains but could it be anything else? Lifters? Will keep an eye on it and try starting it when cold tomorrow. All I've read on the chain issue said it manifests when cold, then goes away(or not). Praying this is a one-off fluke but trying to figure out what it could be. Any thoughts? TIA!
 
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jlglr4

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I’ve heard that bad VVT solenoids can cause a clatter, but I haven’t heard it myself. No codes I assume.
 

Michael Gain

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I'm not an engineer, but it sounds transmission related to me. If the sound goes away when the transmission is in neutral and in park, it would lead me to believe it is torque converter / flex plate related--decoupling the system removes the clicking; engaging the system brings it back. If my brain is working right, putting the transmission in park is the same as putting into neutral; except park locks one of the gears to prevent the vehicle from moving.

Hope that helps.
 

TrinidadLR4

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update: drove it around this morning, nothing. cold startup is nice and quiet, it settles into a nice idle, then warms up quickly. Didn't notice any clattering but also didn't go far. Will keep an eye on it. Might also do a pre-emptive oil change. Really weird, hoping it's not chains as I love this truck. The VVT solenoid angle is interesting. Also maybe fan clutch? thanks all
 

TrinidadLR4

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Update 2: we have a CEL now, along with two codes: P003C-00 Intake(A) camshaft profile control performance or stuck off - Bank 1 and P003E-00 Intake(A) camshaft profile control performance or stuck off - Bank 2. After searching, this looks VVT solenoid related. I guess one solenoid that controls two banks is going bad? Anyone ever seen this before?
 
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jlglr4

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The manual says to check oil supply to the VVTs, oxygen sensor (for false flag to VVTs), or electrical. Not sure if the oil supply has a common origin/pump, but I supposed that’s a possibility. Doubtful it would be the o2 sensors on both sides with no other issues or codes.

I’m thinking more likely electrical. From the 2011 wiring diagram (I assume it’s similar to 2013), the VVT’s have independent connections to the ECM, but appear to splice together (along with the purge valve) the on the power side. I don’t know where the splice is located. Looks like the viscous fan and the cooling fan for the ECM run off this circuit as well, but not much else. Might check the fuse first. Showing as fuse 5E 15A, but again - that’s a 2011 diagram.
 

TrinidadLR4

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thanks, I'll start digging in later today. By any chance, do you have the replacement procedure for the solenoid anywhere in any workshop manual? I have a 2010 pdf that's not super helpful but maybe there's something better out there. Much appreciated!
 

jlglr4

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I’ve never done it before. My 2011 manual doesn’t even have a table of contents, and I can’t find the right section with keyword searching, but in my 2016 manual, it falls under the timing drive components section. The part about the VVT solenoids is summed up in a single figure basically telling you to remove two bolts and pull them out. Looks about as simple as it gets. I don’t think you even need to remove much to get to them if my memory is correct - they’re mounted right on the front of the timing covers.

Maybe someone else here has some real-world experience.
 

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