Originally Posted by Sincerely Yours
I live in western Tokyo.
I was hoping you were in mid-Europe, or Africa, India, or the like, where repairs are common and cars are treasures.
I'm at a disadvantage here because, like in the US, nobody likes to repair old cars anymore. Dealers will repair them for you only if they are covered under warranty, which my 10 year old car is not. Japanese generally don't keep cars longer than five years to avoid the very high inspection costs as they get older
My one trip to Japan (Nagoya and Tokyo) was so full of wonders that I never looked twice at what was on the road. A shame that it's a throw-away society there, too.
Since when did cars become throw-away items? I guess I'm old fashioned. Years ago I'd have fixed it myself but I no longer have the space/time/tools/strength/patience for that kind of activity now.
I'm in the same situation due to age, but as you can see from my signature, I don't throw cars away...
I can buy a used engine which will cost, I don't know, maybe $2,000, but there's no guarantee it won't develop the same or a problem of its own a short time later. I know an independent mechanic who is cheaper than the dealers and is, as far as I can tell, honest, but even he doesn't like to overhaul engines. Used engines are apparently the preferred repair strategy these days. I'm also not intimate enough with the industry to know where the engine shops are and don't speak enough of the local language to be able to communicate my problem to any of the online car clubs.
I hope that the $2000 you mentioned is the cost installed. Used engines in the US are anywhere from $250-900, and cost around $800 to install.
My real purpose in contacting you was to learn the most probable causes for engine knocking in the 2SZ engine so I can speak intelligently about them with my mechanic. Back in the 70s low octane gasoline was the most common cause, and this sounds a lot like that though not as loud
So it's a metallic, rattle-y sound? Did you mean that the knock in your engine is not as loud as pre-ignition knock?
My informal research suggests that the timing chain or belt is a common culprit in the 1SZ and 2SZ engines, and that would match my personal experience with two past Toyota cars I've owned (with different engines), but I don't remember the knocking.
If your engine's timing belt has a mechanical or hydraulic tensioner AND the sound is loudest around the "front" of the engine, it might be the tensioner. It might get louder under load, but probably not. "Front" in quotes -- the front of the engine is the section where you have accessory (alternator, air conditioning) belts.
It's not easy for me to send you a recording due to the noise occurring only under load when the engine is hot,
That would indeed make it hard to record. You need a chassis ear, a wired or wireless sound-gathering system that lets you clamp microphones where-ever you want. You might check eBay Japan to see if you can buy a reasonably-priced used set.
Take all of the rest of the stuff below with a grain of salt. I can talk only in general terms, not having heard the sound
A strong, pounding knock under load (not the delicate little rattle-y sound of pre-ignition) is almost always a main bearing problem.
Those are easy to fix... if you don't care about ultimate longevity. The first fix is to turn up the radio.
The second fix is to replace just the main bearings, which a mechanic should be able to do with the engine in the car. (This won't work if you have galled or un-smooth journals on the crankshaft).
The third fix: if you do care about longevity, then it's more complex: the mechanic removes the main bearing caps, the rod bearing caps, and the crankshaft. The crankshaft goes to a specialist re-grinder, where it is turned and polished. The mechanic then fits oversize bearings and puts everything back together. You would have to get local help in finding the right machine shops and mechanics.
A more delicate, rattle-y knock under load might be as simple as the CV joints in the drive axles, especially if the sound gets louder or changes considerably when you are turning the car under load. Even in throw-away situations, there should be low-cost rebuilt or aftermarket axles.
You feel a main bearing knock in the seat of your pants. You feel a CV joint problem most likely at the steering wheel.
But all this is guess-work without actually hearing it.
Can you give more particulars, such as the RPM when the knocking begins, or whether it happens also when you coast downhill in a gear lower than D (if you have an automatic -- if you have a stick shift, coasting downhill in 2nd gear). Does it always happen, or does the engine begin relatively quietly and get knock-y only when it reaches a certain temperature?
Just had a thought - listen to some YouTube noises and tell me what comes close to yours:
Main bearing knock:
Rod bearing knock:
(less pound-y; video ends badly, for the engine, that is)
CV axle clicking:
(should be easy, cheap fix; listen to the guy's explanation, he's good)