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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
(Tried to post once and didnt work so if oy did and double posted sorry about that) So I recently bought a 2000 xterra with the 3.3 v6 4wd automatic has 19xxxx miles, it made a engine noise but I figured it just needed a oil change easy fix well... took it to the mechanic the next day and he said it had a bad lifter tick and motor was probably shot, it ticks really loud and sounds like a diesel rather it's just started or been running for an hour, and when I go to accelerate on a small hill or encline it jerks and bogs down in power, my father said something about it could be a warped push rod of messed up rocker arm which could explain the tick and power loss, so before I go out and try to take the whole motor apart in the cold does anybody have any ideas or tips to fix it? I need to get this vehicle on the road and be dependable before I drive around with my newborn in it, any help would be appreciated thank you!
 

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There are no push rods in this engine . The lifter maybe have a clogged oil hole in the lifter ,try some Luckus oil additive first , Then you could try a new lifter and rocker both can be done by just removing the valve cover.
 

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Is it a tick or knock? You said it sounds like a diesel. Is the tick/knock louder above the engine, or is it louder when you listen from underneath the car?

If it's louder underneath the car, it could be rod knock, in which case your rod bearings might be toast, and you're looking at a rebuild. You can test this by running thicker oil to see if the knock gets quieter. This could make the rocker arms quieter too though.

Try using a long piece of tubing as a make shift stethoscope. Put one end up to your ear and probe around the engine bay to see where the ticking/knocking is the loudest.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
My dad listened to the motor with a screw driver and said he heard it coming from the driver side valve cover area, and if you stick your head close to that area every now and then you hear a faint barely noticeable miss/knock, it does definitely sound like a diesel and when the hood is closed it's loud but as soon as you open the hood it gets about 20x louder so I'm assuming (which I've been wrong before lol) it's coming from the top end, I think the oil the people I got it from was the Castrol high mileage oil in the green jug, it's in the trunk but haven't looked at it recently, also I don't know if it all ties together or not but it does have a valve cover leak as well.
 

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Well either way, I wouldn't even start it up again without taking off the valve cover to see what's going on first. From your description, it's sounds pretty rough. If it's as loud as you say it is, running it more could cause some irreparable damage.

I'm going to guess that it's a collapsed lifter. Hopefully you don't find chunks of cam or rockers in there lol. Let us know what you find.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yes hopefully I do not lol, I guess you wouldn't happen to have a picture or something to go by to know exactly what I'm looking for is damaged? I've done quite a bit of mechanic work but not much inside the motor lol, I will check it out when the weather clears up and say what I found, thank you all
 

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First look for chunks of broken metal lol. If anything is completely broken it will stand out.

You can search for some basic pictures on Google for vg33e heads and find something.

Basically, you will have your cam shaft directly down the center. The cam has egg shaped lobes on it. Riding on these lobes will be 6 lever arms(rockers). Inspect all of these components for cracking/wear. Try to get a good look at the cam lobes to find any scuffing/galling. If nothing obvious stands out we can go from there.
 

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Sorry, from the picture, I guess you won't be able to see the cam. Rock the rocker arms up and down to see if any of them have a lot more play than the others. You may have to rotate the crank to certain positions to determine this accurately
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Ok so sorry for the late reply after working and being sick constantly I finally got the valve covers off, I seen tiny metal specs it looked like in the oil in the valve covers, I just took off the rocker arms I think they are and took out the lifters, the lifters seem fine to me, they don't seem to have any wear on them or warped at all, same goes for under that, the egg shaped parts underneath the lifters doesn't seem to have any scuffing or wear as well, now it coukd be cause I have a cold and can't smell properly so I won't say for sure but when I was getting down to the lifters I smelled gas really bad in the oil, not sure if that's normal or not but figured I would throw that out there, I was also told when putting this all back together you don't have to have the same amount of bolt turns like say on a 350 chevy motor, I heard they are self tightening so just get the bolts snug, if that isn't true the bolts was very tight to get off so maybe the previous owner tightened them too tight?
 

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Well im probably sure your headers are contributing to the sound as well! I cant imagine the block being bad if maintained right. Which i dont think it was, i just rolled 187k and mines been beat on rather hard pretty much its whole life. But ive in my entire time owning it in 60k miles was late 1 time by like 500 miles over. Try doing a oil flush or run sea foam in there. Not sure how it works but my friend does it and it keeps the inside pretty clean.
 
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