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Old 10-14-2011, 04:34 PM   #1
cyberfiche
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Join Date: Oct 2010
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Default Passenger side engine rattle near glove box

I have a 2004 V6 Vue with about 109k that's making a rattling noise on the passenger side. Iíve searched the forum and there are several posts about knocking and rattling like mine. Some come close to describing what Iím hearing, but no one seems to have found a solution. This is a very difficult noise to explain and I think that may be the problem that other posters have had in getting a good response. Iím going to try to explain the noise the best I can and hopefully I can get some guidance from a fellow Satun Fan.

The noise sounds like it's coming from behind the glove box near the passenger wheel well. Interestingly, it seems louder inside the cabin than it does in the engine compartment. The rattle has a deep bass quality like someone tapping a finger on a wooden table. Iíd say it taps about 400 times per minute at idle. Thereís not a noticeable vibration associated with the rattle and the Vue runs just fine. The rattle doesn't happen all the time, but I can pretty consistently reproduce the noise if I park the Vue facing downhill, put it in drive, and keep the brake fully applied.

I thought at first the noise might be coming from the torque converter. The automatic transmission is a little sluggish when shifting from first to second and a little rough shifting back to first. Itís also a little rough going from second to third when itís cold outside. But the transmission is on the driverís side Ė the opposite side from the rattle. Iíve also thought about the timing belt. So I found a dowel and placed one end at my ear and the other end on the engine. I listened to several different spots in the engine compartment, including spots above the valves and cylinders, the timing belt housing, near all the accessories, and near the transmission. The dowel really localized and amplified every little sound (especially that beautiful little Saturn/Honda tick). Everything sounded perfectly fine in each spot. I also listened to a couple of spots on the body inside the engine compartment. There was nothing noticeable on the driverís side, but the rattle was slightly amplified on the passenger side.

Iím really stumped. I would really appreciate any advice on where to look next.

- John
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