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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Evening all,

I have just been out in my relatively new (to me) MG TF 160 VVC. The engine started making a inconsistent knocking noise (see attached video) after I sped up on the motorway. Its made it home but I'm reluctant to drive until I have a semi-confident diagnosis.

It subsides upon revving, but as soon as my foot is off the accelerator it flares up, then settles to the idle noise you hear in the video. (I meant 160 not 1.6)


Recently serviced so oil levels are all good, I had just completed a long drive so the engine was hot and was in the video, I havent tested cold yet. To me it does sound like its coming from the engine.

Thanks in advance.
 

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Difficult to diagnose but doesnt sound rings- ive just sold mine and had it for 5 years, so id be looking for some assistance if it had sounded like that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Doesn't sound right at all! I'm relatively inexperienced and so my plan is to take to a local garage. Just thought some indication on here might help.
 

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Doesn't sound right at all! I'm relatively inexperienced and so my plan is to take to a local garage. Just thought some indication on here might help.
your post popped up again and I listened to it again. If you jack the car up and suport it safely, you can inspect the exhaust system- the flexi-pipe go break on MGTF's as they do on all cars.
That sounds like its coming from the camshafts- but again, difficult to tell from a video/phone.
Old trick ive used to identify noise is the metal bar and ear- put the bar on the engine and listen to the noise on the safe end of it.
 

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The engine sounds laboured. Your water tank looks dark - have you checked the coolant is indeed only coolant and not oil and coolant?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
PatM, are you saying you believe its a blown exhaust outlet exposing the sound of the camshaft? Might explain it originating at high revs. My jack and stands are at a friends but I will collect and take a look, its a fingers crossed check.

Julian, it does, however the fluid looks clean inside and according to previous owner it hadn't been topped up in a while, I would imagine it leaking or something that would've been spotted on the recent annual service. Temperatures on the 2hr drive home were all fine yesterday too.

I have uploaded a further video of it under revs (see link), max I went to was 4000, the noise is consistent with rpm.


Really apreciate the input so far guys. Who knows, might be some rattly plastic (and i might win the lottery tomorrow)
 

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I don't know what a rattly VVC mechanism sounds like but that would be one just, but in your first video it seems that the noise is coming from the timing belt end of the engine. I sounds like bade bearings to me. I'd check the timing belt tensioner and water pump. Pat's metal bar suggestion is a great; I've used it myself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I don't know what a rattly VVC mechanism sounds like but that would be one just, but in your first video it seems that the noise is coming from the timing belt end of the engine. I sounds like bade bearings to me. I'd check the timing belt tensioner and water pump. Pat's metal bar suggestion is a great; I've used it myself.
Ah yes I meant to address this, I will give it a go to see if I can locate. Will pull the soft top back and get the engine cover off, with that small access any noise will only escape through there so might give a false indication.

Another thing to note is behind the awful sound you can hear the engine revving normally.

Cheers, mowog73
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I don't know what a rattly VVC mechanism sounds like but that would be one just, but in your first video it seems that the noise is coming from the timing belt end of the engine. I sounds like bade bearings to me. I'd check the timing belt tensioner and water pump. Pat's metal bar suggestion is a great; I've used it myself.
Also sorry can you clarify "BADE bearings"? As said, bit of a novice to automotive, but keen to learn. I am an engineer but aerospace not automotive.
 

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Have listen around the alternator. Sounds like a dry and worn bearing. Removing the belt would prove it if the noise stops.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Have listen around the alternator. Sounds like a dry and worn bearing. Removing the belt would prove it if the noise stops.
It did suddenly happen after a hard acceleration, this seems like something that might be gradual? Unless its the 158bhp straw that broke the camels back?
 

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I think you need to take the cover off the engine and determine the general area that the noise is coming from and start honing in on if the noise is coming from the alternator or around the timing belt or the VVC mechanism that is on the rear left side of the engine. If it is from the catalytic converter, that's obviously under the car. If it seems to be on the timing belt side of the car but not sure if its the alternator or not, you may find taking the rear right wheel off and removing the dust cover will help identify if the sound is from the alternator or the timing belt area.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I think you need to take the cover off the engine and determine the general area that the noise is coming from and start honing in on if the noise is coming from the alternator or around the timing belt or the VVC mechanism that is on the rear left side of the engine. If it is from the catalytic converter, that's obviously under the car. If it seems to be on the timing belt side of the car but not sure if its the alternator or not, you may find taking the rear right wheel off and removing the dust cover will help identify if the sound is from the alternator or the timing belt area.
I agree, saturday will be the day for it, ill be able to get my tools and jack by then and hopefully the rain stops. I'll come back with findings then.

As a first time user on any car forum its been great so far, good to know there's a community out there 👋 until Saturday, keep any suggestions coming!

SE4321
 

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In my experience, bad bearings in the alternator or timing belt tensioner pulley sounds like a bag of rocks. I recently changed the timing belt on my Disco's 300Tdi engine and I found that the tensioner pulley was noisy when I spun; the bearings were failing.
 

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You need to get the cover off behind the RH rear wheel so you can see the crankshaft pulley area. sounds to me either an alternator bearing or it could be the tensioner bracket on the alternator has come loose or broken. could also be the heat shield on top of the silencer. It sound like something has come loose or fallen down. flexi pipe as mentioned above.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
So i got the engine cover off and found a disconnected air filter inlet hose! It wasn't the cause of the noise, sadly, but its unclear whether it was already like that when I got it or if it was a syptom of whatever caused the larger issue.

The noise is most certainly coming from the head of the engine. :confused:

Into the garage on Monday and I imagine off with the head, sounds like valves to me.
 

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Best of luck it will be interesting to see what you find. I take it you have had a listen with the oil filler cap removed on top of the rocker cover? Plastic water / washer pipe in the ear and poked into the top of the oil filler hole will soon confirm if its the top end / valves.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Best of luck it will be interesting to see what you find. I take it you have had a listen with the oil filler cap removed on top of the rocker cover? Plastic water / washer pipe in the ear and poked into the top of the oil filler hole will soon confirm if its the top end / valves.
I did not know about this, ill give it a go to confirm.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thank you all for your help, but ut turns out the noise was resonating up the engine from the flywheel.

Improperly torqued bolts (basically loose) meant it was loose. Luckily no damage, reassembly correctly has fixed the issue.

I shall update the header, should anyone Google a flywheel issue it will then reference this and they can hear what mine sounded like!
 
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