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    Thread: 2001 GTI VR6 Bad Knocking Sound - Any Ideas?

    1. 04-19-2007 06:18 PM #1
      I'm trying to diagnose a noise on an '01 GTI VR6. I've attached a link to a sound clip for you to hear. I'm being told that it could be the coilpack, and that this is what misfires sound like on the VR6. It doesn't seem right to me, but I'm not real familiar with the VR6 motor. Sounds more like rod knock to me. What do you think?

      Start - Idle (800rpm) - REV to 1500 RPM - Top out around 2000 RPM
      http://signsbychi.com/car/vr6-2.wav

      The noise stays all the way through the RPM range


    2. 04-19-2007 06:21 PM #2
      thats definatly alot more severe then an ignition/coil pack issue. That sounds like a rod knock or a spun bearing....definatly mechanical....

    3. Member itzakad0ozi3's Avatar
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      04-19-2007 06:22 PM #3
      sounds like its knocking..


      i would check the timing


      Modified by itzakad0ozi3 at 3:28 PM 4-19-2007


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      04-19-2007 06:22 PM #4
      check the waterpump pulley...they come apart and do sound like that....I know.

      if not that, be sure to check all accessory pullies to see if you can identify the source.


    5. 04-19-2007 06:26 PM #5
      Oh sorry forgot mention, I'm also getting some codes:

      P0328 - Knock Sensor 1 High Input
      P0328 - Knock Sensor 2 High Input

      P0300 - Random Cylinder Miss
      P0303 - Cylinder 3 Miss
      P0304 - Cylinder 4 Miss
      P0302 - Cylinder 2 Miss

      Oil looks clean also.
      I'll have to check that pulley.


    6. 04-19-2007 06:28 PM #6
      Although I'm of no help, good luck and free bump for you!

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      04-19-2007 06:37 PM #7
      Quote, originally posted by Ian_01_GTI »
      Oh sorry forgot mention, I'm also getting some codes:

      P0328 - Knock Sensor 1 High Input
      P0328 - Knock Sensor 2 High Input

      P0300 - Random Cylinder Miss
      P0303 - Cylinder 3 Miss
      P0304 - Cylinder 4 Miss
      P0302 - Cylinder 2 Miss

      Oil looks clean also.
      I'll have to check that pulley.


      WAIT!!!!! you made me think!! I have seen once or twice on a VR6 where the spark plugs have "backed out" and losened themselves. GO NOW AND CHECK ALL THE SPARK PLUGS.


    8. 04-19-2007 06:52 PM #8
      I wish it would be that simple. The plugs are all tight. I checked compression also. All cylinders about 165-180 psi. The car has 130k on it, but from what i hear that's not much for a VR6.

      Getting good spark too with a spark tester.

      Also sounds fine when you just crank with the coil disconnected. (Crank without letting it start)

      Does this sound at all like a miss? Should I try new plugs?


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      04-19-2007 06:54 PM #9
      compression #'s are fine...anything above ~160-165 is within spec.

      has the engine ever been over-revved?


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      04-19-2007 06:55 PM #10
      pull the plugs and physically look at them....also, there should be small compression rings on each plug make sure they are not cracked.

    11. 04-19-2007 06:56 PM #11
      Sounds like a stuck lifter maybe

    12. 04-19-2007 06:56 PM #12
      Don't know if it's been over reved, wouldn't the rev-limiter prevent this.

      How high would be over reving?


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      04-19-2007 06:58 PM #13
      Quote, originally posted by Ian_01_GTI »
      Don't know if it's been over reved, wouldn't the rev-limiter prevent this.

      How high would be over reving?

      you can mechanically over-rev the motor by downshifting into the wrong gear....i.e. 1st not 3rd at 50mph.

      I know people who've done this.....did this just "start" when did you notice this???


    14. 04-19-2007 07:02 PM #14
      Ok yeah, didn't think about over reving that way. Duh! I don't know if that has ever happened, my guess is no.

      It started as just a little tap, like maybe valve tap.

      Picked the car up drove about 35 miles, slight tapping at idle, went away with gas. Drove about 10-15 more miles and the noise you hear started. At first it was somewhat intermittent, but now its constant.


      Modified by Ian_01_GTI at 4:19 PM 4-19-2007


    15. Member BakBer's Avatar
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      04-19-2007 08:24 PM #15
      On a sad note I've heard this noise before. Remove you're valve cover and manually turn the motor over to TDC. The cams should have a notch on the passenger side of the motor. At TDC the notches on the cams line up with the valve cover mating surface. VW makes a tool to line up the cames but a small piece of 1/8" thick sheet metal will work. If the cams are even a little bit out you could be replacing bent valves. This could be caused by a bad timing chain or the timing chain tensioner could be bad. Good Luck
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    16. 04-19-2007 08:25 PM #16
      It's not the water pump pulley, or the seals on the plugs.

      I'm just trying to determine if the noise sounds like a miss at all, so I can justify trying to replace the coil pack.


    17. 04-19-2007 08:51 PM #17
      1) how many miles on the car?

      2) auto or 5sp?

      3) what mods have been done mechanically? Don't care about a CAI or a drop-in K&N filter - just what has been done that could be a source of the noise? Clutch/flywheel? Maybe a bolt has backed out and is smacking something - and it is continuing to back out, which would account for the increase in noise. Cams? Maybe they weren't aligned properly when they got installed. Repaired timing chain guides? If so, did they take the chains off when they did them? If so, they could have misaligned stuff when they put them back on. Upgraded pistons? Could be valves smacking your pistons.

      4) is your idle smooth and when you give it gas do the revs go up smoothly (sitting still, not driving)? When you drive it does it accelerate smoothly or is it jumpy/jerky? If it's all smooth, you can discount misfiring due to the coilpack. If it's jerky and NOT smooth, do #5:

      5) get a spray bottle and fill it with water, then MIST the coilpack at night. if you see arcing, you need to do the coilpack fix.

      6) after you do #5 (and fix it, if need be), is the knocking still there? Because I'm pretty sure it will be. If so, determine the LOCATION from which the knocking is originating - bottom/top/front/back/left/right - WHERE on the engine. Use a stethoscope if you have one. If you don't, get your longest screwdriver and put the metal part on the engine and your ear against the handle. Figure out where the noise is coming from.

      I hate to say it, but I'd lean more toward incorrect cam alignment/timing chain slip. These 12v VRs are notorious for the timing chain guides going out on them. Not so much the chain, but the guides. And if enough of the guide went, the chain could have a lot of play in it. Enough for it to slip a tooth or two. I'd do what MkIV_03GLI said before you do anything else. The damage is already done - whatever it is - but hopefully not to the point you'll need an entire engine.

      One other thing you might try, since you said you picked the car up and drove it about 50 miles so far. Interestingly enough, motor honey will hide a TON of noises. For about 50 miles. Go get some and pour it in - see if the car sounds like it did when you picked it up. I'm assuming either you just bought it or you're a mechanic. Either way, if motor honey makes it quiet again, rebuild it.

      so the list of things to check:
      all pulleys
      location of noise
      etc etc etc etc

      hope you figure this out man...


    18. 04-19-2007 08:53 PM #18
      and no, it doesn't sound like a misfire. OH, one last thing - get someone with a VAG-COM to hook up and get a REAL read off your car. those Pcodes only tell you so much. A VAG-COM may actually tell you what's wrong.

      and I've never seen knock sensor codes pop on a misfiring coilpack. I really think you have valve timing off and you're misfiring because the valves are in the wrong position when it tries to fire.


    19. 04-20-2007 12:27 AM #19
      I though about the motor honey thing too, but I am more concerned with diagnosing it.

      Maybe I'll try it though to see if it covers anything up, that should eliminate the coil possibility.


    20. 04-20-2007 12:31 AM #20
      Is there oil in the car :S

    21. Member nick526's Avatar
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      04-20-2007 12:34 AM #21
      sounds like the chains or a bad lifter to me, though the knock sensor codes would lead me to believe the your noise is in the bottom end rather than the head/valve train
      RIP: Mk2 jetta (stolen ), Mk4 jetta (side-swiped, totaled ), Mk4 GTI (totaled by teenage girl )

    22. 04-20-2007 12:36 AM #22
      LOL
      Yeah there is oil in the car, but it definitely sounds like there isn't.

      The oil actually looks pretty good.


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      04-20-2007 01:08 AM #23
      that hurts just listening to it. Hope you figure things out though!

    24. 04-20-2007 01:38 AM #24
      About 4 months ago i noticed the same sound from engine. I have a 2000 GLX VR6. Like over night it happened, like some days its really loud and i can feel a differnce in power too. Then some days barely any noise and the car runs great. About the 4th day of this i took it to my local VW dealer and they kept it over night and told me it was normal. Even though i took it to multiple garages and they keep saying its the lifter rods. I don't what to do besides maybe try a thicker oil like a 10- 40, i tried that and it helped alittle, but didn't fix it. Well, good luck and your not alone.



    25. Member IN-FLT's Avatar
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      04-20-2007 01:46 AM #25
      im gonna lean towards lifters do like the guy said before and check your cams. THAT is deff not normal and deff is mechanical in nature. I would not run it a lot like that.

      130k... have the timing chains recently been done? if so i'm gonna say someone got some alignment off like previously suggested


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