Rod Knock – The Definition And How To Fix It

A rod knock is an ominous sign for the engine. You may end up replacing almost half of the engine components if not the entire engine. It affects several vital and expensive parts including the crankshaft, rods, and pistons. Diagnosing these issues is a time-consuming process and replacing the parts requires plenty of money. The practical thing to do is to detect the symptoms early and take prompt actions.

What Is A Rod Knock?

The rod referred to here is an engine part that ties up the pistons to the crankshaft. There are some bearings at the connecting point where the rod meets the crankshaft.

The problem occurs when any or multiple bearings fail. What does rod knock sound like? The rod knock sound is similar to a hammer banging or tapping on the oil pan. It happens during the engine’s power stroke, which brings the bearings in contact with the crankshaft. In extreme cases, the rod itself thuds into the crankshaft.

rod knock sound
It sounds like the banging of a hammer. (Photo Source: istockphoto)

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The intensity of the noise may recede or almost disappear when the car accelerates and when the engine is cold. But, it will always return and it will get louder when there is not enough gas in the fuel tank.

The sound of rod knock has several other names – engine pinging, engine knock, and spark knock.

What Causes Rod Knock?

A damaged or failed rod bearing is the primary reason for creating this trouble. The failure is the result of the hydrodynamic oil wedge getting misplaced or gone missing. Some other reasons that can contribute to the deterioration of the bearings are:

  • Inadequate oil viscosity
  • The minimal flow of oil to the bearing surface
  • Low oil pressure
  • The high temperature of the oil
  • High-level of combustion pressure
  • Excessive engine revving
  • Intense inertial forces of the piston

How To Fix Rod Knock?

You can do the rod knock fix in your garage by following these steps. However, always consult a mechanic if the problem goes past the primary stage.

Materials Required For Fixing The Rod Knock

  • Mechanic’s ramps
  • Fresh oil
  • Oil pans
  • A new oil filter
  • Oil-filter wrench
  • Fuel-injector cleaner

The Procedure For Fixing The Rod Knock

When you have all the parts and tools, follow these steps to restore the normal engine functions. Before starting anything, you have to drive the car onto the mechanic’s ramps and park in a position that provides easy access to the engine.

how to fix rod knock
You can fix the problem at the primary stage. (Photo Source: driving-dutchman)

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Step 1: Place the oil pan under the oil cap to drain the oil out. Replace the cap after it is done.

Step 2: Now, it’s time to replace the oil filter. Turn it to a clockwise direction with the wrench. Fit a new one into its place and tighten it with the help of the wrench.

Step 3: Replace the drained oil with almost 5 quarts of fresh oil. Then, examine the rod bearings. Tighten them if they are loose or replace with new ones if they are damaged.

Step 4: The last step is to clean the carburetor or fuel injector. It will prevent dirt and grime from entering the engine.