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#4604305 - 12/15/17 09:52 AM Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed?
Rochev Offline


Registered: 12/03/16
Posts: 12
Loc: Maine
Winter of 2016 my 2009 Escape V6 started a slight knock when cold.

I'll take the kicks in the rear for this, but we had a cold spell so I went from factory 5w-30 oil to 0w-20. Noise started after I switched back to 5-30 in spring. This worked on my older vehicles every year with no ill effects.

Fast forward to this winter. It knocks quietly when cold only now it doesn't stop. Engine has 114k miles and Ive always used Castrol Edge 5w-30 with oem filter.

These escapes are a pain in the winter because the transmission doesn't like to shift when it's cold. This makes it VERY difficult to keep the engine under 2500RPM until it warms up. My wife will let it run until the idle drops down, but she just puts her foot down and doesn't bother with how high it revs. I'm wondering if that accelerated some kind of wear or it was the thinner oil last year, or both.

Anyways should I put 5-40 in it or just keep 5-30 in it? I'm putting a can of Restore to seal any wear.

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#4604336 - 12/15/17 10:21 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
SubieRubyRoo Offline


Registered: 05/14/12
Posts: 1125
Loc: Winchester, Indiana
0W20 did nothing wrong to your engine. I would not mess with the Restore either. You haven't really quantified yet what the issue actually is, so don't compound/confound the issue before you know.

6F35 is a PITA; I did a 3x drain/fill on my Fusion with Amsoil ATL, and disconnected the battery for an hour after the last fill to let the computer reset. It shifted night and day better than on the factory fill, especially when cold, and has maintained to this day.

What kind of noise is it? Does it move in sync with revs? Have you done a UOA to even see if there are any concerning wear metals? Don't just assume there is something wrong. Engines make all kinds of noises and many of them are not detrimental. Dig in before you actually cause issues by blindly flailing about. No offense... Fords with 110k are generally still in good enough shape you don't need to sell the farm.

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#4604338 - 12/15/17 10:23 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
Scdevon Offline


Registered: 09/07/09
Posts: 325
Loc: Rockies
If the noise goes away as the engine warms up it's most likely piston slap. Annoying, but pretty harmless in modern engines as long as it isn't too severe. Even in Maine, 5W30 should be fine year round in an engine with that amount of miles on it; especially 5W30 synthetic.

If you can "modulate" the loudness of the knocking sound in neutral by feathering the gas pedal in the 1200 to 1500 rpm range, that would be classic piston slap sound.
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#4604343 - 12/15/17 10:27 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
demarpaint Offline


Registered: 07/03/05
Posts: 29741
Loc: NY
Originally Posted By: Rochev



These escapes are a pain in the winter because the transmission doesn't like to shift when it's cold. This makes it VERY difficult to keep the engine under 2500RPM until it warms up. My wife will let it run until the idle drops down, but she just puts her foot down and doesn't bother with how high it revs. I'm wondering if that accelerated some kind of wear or it was the thinner oil last year, or both.

Anyways should I put 5-40 in it or just keep 5-30 in it? I'm putting a can of Restore to seal any wear.


Your wife's driving pattern over the years certainly didn't help. I'd pass on the Restore. I'd also pass on the 5W40 and opt for a 0W40. Or if you want to go the additive route Schaeffers #132 with 5W30 oil might be a good solution, if you don't plan on the proper repair. The Schaeffers #132 is a very good product for older engines with knocks, and oil burning issues, [if applicable here]. It is highly respected around here and usually not considered a "snake oil. " You can buy it on AMZN too.

Have you determined if you even have a knock?


Edited by demarpaint (12/15/17 10:33 AM)
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#4604346 - 12/15/17 10:28 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
Loi Offline


Registered: 05/14/11
Posts: 43
Loc: Des Moines, IA
In the winter a 0w20 should provide good oil protection and flow during cold starts. Try using a 0w20 with higher levels of molybdenum. Cars that run oil with higher levels of moly seem smoother and quieter in my experience. Something like Mazda 0w20 Moly oil.
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#4604351 - 12/15/17 10:33 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
tomcat27 Offline


Registered: 06/25/09
Posts: 3564
Loc: Chicago, IL
I'd agree that the likely cause is excess bearing and or cylinder wear from pushing the engine when the oil is not warmed up. It takes 10-20 minutes to warm the oil in the winter; your coolant temp gauge is not an indicator of oil temperature.
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#4604353 - 12/15/17 10:38 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
Alex_V Offline


Registered: 04/10/16
Posts: 1155
Loc: Campbellsville, KY
In my experience a rod knock (the most severe/deadly kind of "knock") is one of those noises you can almost feel, and a sound I'd describe as a harsh borderline "clunk" in more severe cases. Piston slap, however, is more of a "clack". I doubt your 0w20-5w30 switching did anything - it may have happened no matter what. If it's piston slap, Chevy LS V8's (5.3, 6.0) and the venerable Jeep 4.0 inline six run many, many miles with piston slap, among others.
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#4604365 - 12/15/17 10:52 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
thastinger Offline


Registered: 10/23/17
Posts: 62
Loc: VA
http://www.underhoodservice.com/tech-tip-ford-camshaft-tick-noise/

Maybe this will help. I know this is going to sounds crazy..but..we bought an 04 3L escape new, it had always had mobil 1 and 820s filters. Walmart had edge on sale so I bought some, changed the oil and filter and the engine started making this cam noise a couple days later, it was pretty loud. Since the only change had been the oil, I switched back to mobil 1 and it has never returned. That was at about 104K, it has 116K now.

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#4604371 - 12/15/17 10:57 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
OVERKILL Offline


Registered: 04/28/08
Posts: 36422
Loc: Ontario, Canada
If it was rod knock, it would get louder as the engine warmed. Generally, minor rod bearing wear only presents when the oil is suitably thinned, ergo, it is quiet when the engine is cold.

Piston slap on the other hand, presents as loudest when the engine is cold. As the engine warms and the pistons expand, this noise is reduced or eliminated.

I know on the Modular engines, Ford used coated skirts to deal with start-up noise, but if that coating wears off, then noise can occur. It won't have any detrimental effect on the life of the engine, however it is annoying.
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#4604394 - 12/15/17 11:22 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
Panzerman Offline


Registered: 12/16/06
Posts: 4203
Loc: Port Orange, Florida
I would stick with 5w30 or go with 10w30. A 40 wt seem like overkill. Did you try higher octane gas. My daughter's 5.4 makes noise unless she puts premium gas in, then it purrs.
I d try higher octane first.
It can't hurt and see what it does.
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#4604397 - 12/15/17 11:26 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
Rochev Offline


Registered: 12/03/16
Posts: 12
Loc: Maine
Thanks all! The only way I can describe the noise is that it sounds like a motor that doesn't have enough oil. I started her up this morning and it was actually quiet. It doesn't burn any oil at all.

SubieRubyRoo, I'll try that Amsoil sometime. The transmission really drives me nuts in this car. It has a ton of power but I can never use it with the way it shifts.

I'll also change to a different oil. I'll try Rotella T6. It's cheap and I've always used Rotella in my turbo's with great success. They even burned a lot less oil!

Just a thought. Why are most people against something like Restore? I got the idea from my father who used it in his Taurus every oil change. The car never had any issues. I figured it could only do good, right?

Edit: Panzerman, I've tried 93 and other than getting about 30 more miles per average tank, it sounded the same.
I put Techron cleaner in the tank every month or so. More often in the winter.


Edited by Rochev (12/15/17 11:29 AM)

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#4604398 - 12/15/17 11:26 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
Old Mustang Guy Offline


Registered: 11/16/05
Posts: 967
Loc: Rockwall, Texas
Factory oil was 5w20. My 01 Escape used 5w20 until I gave it away at 235k. Could you have gotten a bad oil filter?

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#4604403 - 12/15/17 11:36 AM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
OVERKILL Offline


Registered: 04/28/08
Posts: 36422
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: Rochev
Thanks all! The only way I can describe the noise is that it sounds like a motor that doesn't have enough oil. I started her up this morning and it was actually quiet. It doesn't burn any oil at all.


Well piston slap isn't intermittent, so perhaps you have a sticking tensioner or something silly like that?

Originally Posted By: Rochev
I'll also change to a different oil. I'll try Rotella T6. It's cheap and I've always used Rotella in my turbo's with great success. They even burned a lot less oil!


Rotella is a fair bit thicker than what your vehicle calls for, I'm not sure I'd be so keen to yet again change oils with an intermittent issue. Castrol Edge is a good oil, I don't see a reason to stop using that. If the noise returns you could always try a run of Mobil 1 in the same grade and see if it has an impact.

Originally Posted By: Rochev
Just a thought. Why are most people against something like Restore? I got the idea from my father who used it in his Taurus every oil change. The car never had any issues. I figured it could only do good, right?


Because it is a product that consists of solids in suspension designed to temporarily fill voids, like scores in cylinder bores, to allow you to get a few more miles out of an engine that would otherwise be scrapped. It has no place in a healthy engine.

Lack of harm is not proof of performance, lots of people run Lucas as well, doesn't mean it is beneficial.

Originally Posted By: Rochev
I put Techron cleaner in the tank every month or so. More often in the winter.


If you are running top tier gasoline, that sounds like overkill shrug

What are you using for filters?
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#4604424 - 12/15/17 12:00 PM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
dparm Offline


Registered: 04/19/10
Posts: 13466
Loc: Chicago, IL
Knocking is related to ignition and fuel, not oil.
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#4604434 - 12/15/17 12:19 PM Re: Engine knocking. Heavier oil needed? [Re: Rochev]
Rochev Offline


Registered: 12/03/16
Posts: 12
Loc: Maine
I started it again and listened closely. It sounds like a 4cyl's piston slap but more of a clunk. It's subtle, but it sounds like a clattering diesel under acceleration. I've only used 93 a few times to test the difference. I use OEM Motorcraft filters, give or take a few Fram filters. It's due for an oil change so I'm going to change it soon and see if there's any difference again.

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