2004 Toyota Camry Starting and Running Engine Noises

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  #1  
Old 05-30-16, 05:16 AM
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2004 Toyota Camry Starting and Running Engine Noises

2004 Toyota Camry made a RAT-TAT-TAT noise when trying to start. It did eventually start. I though maybe the battery was going bad but when it started I thought maybe the starter was faulty. When I had it running there was an intermittent metal scraping sound coming from the area of the grey domed housing located in front of the engine....I don't even know what this part is called. My limited automotive mechanical went out with the carburetor.
 
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Old 05-30-16, 05:19 AM
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A picture with part would help. back up a little and show engine with part.
 
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Old 05-30-16, 05:58 AM
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Scraping Noise coming from silver domed area. Name:  2004 camry engine.png
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Old 05-30-16, 06:38 AM
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That looks like an exhaust system cover.

Name:  2004 camry engine.jpg
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Interesting video I found. Is it similar to your noise ?
you tube/watch?v=wKlBC3bFE6g
 
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Old 05-30-16, 06:42 AM
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I agree looks like a exhaust heat shield. Toyota guys may be in soon but you will have to take shield off to see.
 
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Old 05-30-16, 06:46 AM
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Noise is similar when first starting. After it's running the noise isn't constant. It reminds me of the bearing noise you would hear old older cars when the fan was in front of the engine and maybe the water pump was going. I've got a very good mechanic.....I'll let AAA flat bed it over to him.
 
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Old 05-30-16, 06:51 AM
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OP, that is your exhaust manifold, covered by heat shield. Technically, there is nothing in there that may produce a noise, as there are no moving parts.
Noise you describe is rather non specific.
Knowing Camry, my wild guess is, if she started, it's rocker noise.
Indicates low oil pressure at cold start up.
Steps to do are simple:
1. Check oil level on cold/level.
2. add as needed
3. or, change oil as needed

If oil level is good, and loud clicking noise goes away as engine warms up, you need to pour can of Seafom into the engine, via oil cap on the pass side. Drive then for couple hours preferably or, if not possible, for a hundred or so miles. Chnage oil. Replace oil with 10W30, heavier weight one, to allow faster oil pressure build up at cold start ups.
If this does not fix the problem, it's mechanic next. Tappets need to be replaced and valve train gaps restored to spec.
This engine is practically bulletproof. But it does not have oil lifters for valves, has tappets, bucket looking things atop valves. They eventually wear out and gap develops between rocker arm and tappet surface, resulting in click.
Seafoam usually works as it cleans small oil passages in the engine head and improves oil circulation. That results in faster oil lubrication build up in the system.
Tappets job used to be $500 plus at a reasonable Toyota shop. NOT DEALER. Shop. Independent.
 
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Old 05-30-16, 06:55 AM
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I second Igor's comments on durability. That 4 cylinder Camry is nearly indestructible if properly maintained. You didn't mention how many miles on it, but going by average I would guess about 200k?

"I'll let AAA flat bed it over to him".

Or wheel lift it.
 
  #9  
Old 05-30-16, 08:04 AM
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It's only has 80K miles. Mostly short local trip stuff and stop and go work commutes. It's my wife's and during the winter she lets it warm up 'forever' so she doesn't have to get into a cold car.
 
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Old 05-30-16, 11:35 AM
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Not out of the realm of possibilities that you have a sludge problem. That year is in the range for potentially developing sludge. See the discussion here:

sludge symptoms? - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums

Just a guess, but those long long cold weather warm-ups and short trips, I suspect would tend to aggravate any sludge issues.
 
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Old 05-30-16, 01:31 PM
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Thank You folks for all of your input. I'll mention all the possibilities you've mentioned to my mechanic. All lot make sense to me because my wife had a stroke a little over a year ago and hasn't driven since then. I've had to stick close to home and only take short trips and try to alternate between her car, which is having the problem, and mine.
 
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Old 05-30-16, 02:09 PM
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So car been sitting mostly. As the result, two things happen:
1. oil drip down into crankcase as oil pump is not more or les continuously lubricating it
2. all seals harden as they are not routinely lubricated by oil because car ois not driven routinely.
As it sits more, issue worsens. Then you have so little oil up in the head that it starts all kinds of racket. Very typical.

Not to argue, I have never ever heard of a particular engine developing sludge problem. I have heard and seen folks use cheap gas and not doing regular maintenance THAT resulting in sludge build up. Or, using various chemicals to stop leaks. Those 2.5L engines are great engines. Drivers - not always so.
 
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Old 05-31-16, 04:39 AM
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Surprised you're not up on that subject, Igor:

Vehicle Engine Sludge | Consumer Reports

An '04 is technically out of the range of years affected, but thought it was worth mentioning.
 
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Old 05-31-16, 06:51 AM
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No wonder:

Used-car shoppers should also realize that even the most complained-about engines represented less than 1 percent of those made, so the odds of avoiding such a car are in your favor.

Sludge problems demonstrate the importance of sticking to the manufacturer’s oil-change intervals.
 
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