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Have a 2010 SE with about 96k miles on it, about a week ago it started ticking when I was accelerating, then it started doing it while idle (just at a lower volume), did some research and a lot of symptoms pointed towards spark plugs, and it was about time to replace them anyway, so I went ahead and did it myself, and the tick went away for about 24 hours, then it started all over again, just as bad, so today I tried an oil change, was about at 4K miles since I last changed it and it seemed to help for a minute, but now it’s just as bad as the first time it started, maybe even a bit worse. Need advice ASAP! Also yes I put the right oil in, and the right amount, and changed the filter.
 

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Could be anything. Does it speed up and slow down when accelerating/decelerating? How loud is it? You can take a paper roll tube, listen, and try to isolate where the ticking is coming from.
 

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Could be anything. Does it speed up and slow down when accelerating/decelerating? How loud is it? You can take a paper roll tube, listen, and try to isolate where the ticking is coming from.
happends when accelerating, speeds up and gets louder. It’s audible from inside the car with the windows up and I have an aftermarket mopar exhaust
 

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You'll have to isolate it. If it's getting worse with time, I would guess you have a rod knocking.
 

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Are you having any performance loss? Sputtering or loss of power?
 

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It’s most likely one or both rocker arm assemblies. They are made out of aluminum and have a weird oil flow design that leads to several problems with the rockers, one of which is the ticking noise. Another is when the individual rockers begin chewing up the rocker next it on the exhaust side of the assembly and start bouncing off the camshaft lobes.

That 3.5L engine was plagued with this issue, and I ran into it on my 2010 Challenger when I had it.

One way to know for sure if this is the source of the noise is to pull the valve cover and visually inspect the rocker arm assembly. If you see the damaged rockers on the exhaust side, the whole assembly has to be replaced.

That’s the good news...

It’s also possible to have the rocker assembly go bad and begin making the ticking noise but not show any outward signs of damage. There can be a lack of oil flow in the critical areas which leads to increased wear and premature failure, but the ticking noise will be the only sign there is a problem with this scenario.

Rocker assembly replacement is required there as well.

Now for the bad news: parts alone will cost you if you have to fix this.

The last time I looked into all this, the rocker assemblies were $275 each, or $500 for both.

That’s for new parts. You can buy used ones for $100 or so, but there’s no guarantee a used one won’t be damaged from the same problem already.

Oh yeah, and this was all back in 2015, so I would not be surprised if the prices have gone up since then.

Sorry to dump all this bad news and bleak outlook on you, but it’s the reality of the situation you are probably facing. I went through it with mine, and I can attest to the fact it’s no fun to deal with.

Good luck,
Nuke
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It’s most likely one or both rocker arm assemblies. They are made out of aluminum and have a weird oil flow design that leads to several problems with the rockers, one of which is the ticking noise. Another is when the individual rockers begin chewing up the rocker next it on the exhaust side of the assembly and start bouncing off the camshaft lobes.

That 3.5L engine was plagued with this issue, and I ran into it on my 2010 Challenger when I had it.

One way to know for sure if this is the source of the noise is to pull the valve cover and visually inspect the rocker arm assembly. If you see the damaged rockers on the exhaust side, the whole assembly has to be replaced.

That’s the good news...

It’s also possible to have the rocker assembly go bad and begin making the ticking noise but not show any outward signs of damage. There can be a lack of oil flow in the critical areas which leads to increased wear and premature failure, but the ticking noise will be the only sign there is a problem with this scenario.

Rocker assembly replacement is required there as well.

Now for the bad news: parts alone will cost you if you have to fix this.

The last time I looked into all this, the rocker assemblies were $275 each, or $500 for both.

That’s for new parts. You can buy used ones for $100 or so, but there’s no guarantee a used one won’t be damaged from the same problem already.

Oh yeah, and this was all back in 2015, so I would not be surprised if the prices have gone up since then.

Sorry to dump all this bad news and bleak outlook on you, but it’s the reality of the situation you are probably facing. I went through it with mine, and I can attest to the fact it’s no fun to deal with.

Good luck,
Nuke
What would be a better situation- rocket arm or rod knock?
 

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What would be a better situation- rocket arm or rod knock?
If one of the connecting rods begins knocking, the engine is toast. It is only a matter of time before it comes loose and breaks stuff inside the engine. It would get steadily worse, quickly, and louder as it gets closer to death.

If the sound is akin to someone hiding inside the engine and beating on the insides with a hammer, a dull thud-thud-thud, that would be something like a rod or crank bearing about to go.

If the sound is more like an annoyingly loud typewriter that is at its worst in the morning or anytime it’s cold, that’s the rocker assemblies.

If left unrelated, a malfunctioning rocker assembly will eventually chew up the camshaft over which it’s mounted. That would require a new cam and rocker assembly for that cylinder head, but it wouldn’t necessarily doom the engine.

The rocker/cam scenario would take much longer to play out, like thousands of miles. The knocking rod/engine trashing scenario would take much less time, like dozens of miles, if you’re lucky.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If one of the connecting rods begins knocking, the engine is toast. It is only a matter of time before it comes loose and breaks stuff inside the engine. It would get steadily worse, quickly, and louder as it gets closer to death.

If the sound is akin to someone hiding inside the engine and beating on the insides with a hammer, a dull thud-thud-thud, that would be something like a rod or crank bearing about to go.

If the sound is more like an annoyingly loud typewriter that is at its worst in the morning or anytime it’s cold, that’s the rocker assemblies.

If left unrelated, a malfunctioning rocker assembly will eventually chew up the camshaft over which it’s mounted. That would require a new cam and rocker assembly for that cylinder head, but it wouldn’t necessarily doom the engine.

The rocker/cam scenario would take much longer to play out, like thousands of miles. The knocking rod/engine trashing scenario would take much less time, like dozens of miles, if you’re lucky.
Is there any way I can post a video of it in this thread? Want to show exactly what I hear
 

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Is there any way I can post a video of it in this thread? Want to show exactly what I hear
If you have a gmail/google account, upload a video clip to YouTube and paste in here the Share link from YouTube for that vid. That’s the easiest way I have found
 

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Discussion Starter #13

this is from last night, pretty loud when revving, about 45 mins after I changed the oil and ran the car for a bit, this morning was much quieter and if it continues to be quiet I’ll post a video later of the updated sound
 

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this is from last night, pretty loud when revving, about 45 mins after I changed the oil and ran the car for a bit, this morning was much quieter and if it continues to be quiet I’ll post a video later of the updated sound
ouch, that sounds like something from the rotating assembly in the engine’s bottom end, e.g. a rod knocking.

You need to start deciding how you want to handle it when that engine dies on you, and it will do it sooner rather than later I’m afraid.

You can likely find a used 3.5L at a local salvage yard to replace that one when the rod gives loose, or you can sell the car for whatever you can get (not much I’m afraid) and move on.

Honestly, the 3.5L is such an old and underpowered engine, replacing one in a 4K car like the Challenger with another engine just like it is ill-advised unless you are still paying the car off maybe.

But that’s getting into financial decisions that affect your livelihood, so I’ll stay out of that. Just know it is very likely, from the sounds of it, you will be making some financial decisions regarding that car pretty soon. 🙁

sorry to be Mr. Bad News...
 

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ouch, that sounds like something from the rotating assembly in the engine’s bottom end, e.g. a rod knocking.

You need to start deciding how you want to handle it when that engine dies on you, and it will do it sooner rather than later I’m afraid.

You can likely find a used 3.5L at a local salvage yard to replace that one when the rod gives loose, or you can sell the car for whatever you can get (not much I’m afraid) and move on.

Honestly, the 3.5L is such an old and underpowered engine, replacing one in a 4K car like the Challenger with another engine just like it is ill-advised unless you are still paying the car off maybe.

But that’s getting into financial decisions that affect your livelihood, so I’ll stay out of that. Just know it is very likely, from the sounds of it, you will be making some financial decisions regarding that car pretty soon. 🙁

sorry to be Mr. Bad News...
If it’s lighter today would that indicate the oil just needed time to reach everything? It’s a pretty significant difference from last night
 

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If it’s lighter today would that indicate the oil just needed time to reach everything? It’s a pretty significant difference from last night
The oil reaches everything in just a moment or two after engine start.

The noise doesn't sound very good at all. Absent more info I would have to agree with Nuke the noise suggests a serious internal engine problem.

A rod bearing perhaps.

Too late now but when you changed the oil you should have captured some and had it analyzed. If a rod (or main) bearing was failing -- has failed if the noise is coming from a rod/main bearing -- the analysis would have found bearing metal in the oil and in sufficiently high PPMs to make the diagnosis clear.

That the noise intensity appears to have changed I can't explain other than often while there is an inexplicable change in a noise or some other symptom the underlying problem is there and it won't get better on its on.

Unless you are capable of isolating the noise and confirming it is coming from inside the engine and where or confirming it is from outside the engine -- as an example a very noisy water pump -- and then addressing the cause of the noise properly my advice is to avoid running the engine any and get the car to a qualified shop for a diagnosis.
 

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Yep, I think your best approach here is to assume it is a rod or crank bearing, and therefore a fatally injured engine with a finite number of miles left before it dies. As such, you don’t want to drive it at all unless absolutely necessary, like up onto a roll-away tow truck or into a service bay at the mechanics...that’s about it honestly.

Who knows, the car could go 10 more miles, or it could go another 20 miles, or it may only last another 500 feet. I think you should Assume the worst and get the car to a place that can properly diagnose it, but do that without driving the car if at all possible....or as little as possible.

I used to have a Tahoe that I overrevved in a mudhole once, and it started making a similar noise to yours. I thought I could get it home (~20 miles away), but it only made it about 18 miles before the rod broke and came through the side of the engine block. It was a violent and messy death, and it stranded me on the side of the road when it went down.

There was nothing about that experience I recommend. That’s why I recommend tow trucks and such over further driving, lest you have to deal with a similar situation.
 

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Sounds like you have a rod knocking. I wouldn't start the car anymore until you get it fixed. If it was me, I would find a 5.7l Hemi engine and drivetrain to drop in it.
 

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Yep, I think your best approach here is to assume it is a rod or crank bearing, and therefore a fatally injured engine with a finite number of miles left before it dies. As such, you don’t want to drive it at all unless absolutely necessary, like up onto a roll-away tow truck or into a service bay at the mechanics...that’s about it honestly.

Who knows, the car could go 10 more miles, or it could go another 20 miles, or it may only last another 500 feet. I think you should Assume the worst and get the car to a place that can properly diagnose it, but do that without driving the car if at all possible....or as little as possible.

I used to have a Tahoe that I overrevved in a mudhole once, and it started making a similar noise to yours. I thought I could get it home (~20 miles away), but it only made it about 18 miles before the rod broke and came through the side of the engine block. It was a violent and messy death, and it stranded me on the side of the road when it went down.

There was nothing about that experience I recommend. That’s why I recommend tow trucks and such over further driving, lest you have to deal with a similar situation.
Damn, I hope that’s not the case, I’ll have to post a video in a bit of the updated sound, it’s my daily so I don’t have much choice but to drive it and all these shops are booked for weeks
 

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Yep, I think your best approach here is to assume it is a rod or crank bearing, and therefore a fatally injured engine with a finite number of miles left before it dies. As such, you don’t want to drive it at all unless absolutely necessary, like up onto a roll-away tow truck or into a service bay at the mechanics...that’s about it honestly.

Who knows, the car could go 10 more miles, or it could go another 20 miles, or it may only last another 500 feet. I think you should Assume the worst and get the car to a place that can properly diagnose it, but do that without driving the car if at all possible....or as little as possible.

I used to have a Tahoe that I overrevved in a mudhole once, and it started making a similar noise to yours. I thought I could get it home (~20 miles away), but it only made it about 18 miles before the rod broke and came through the side of the engine block. It was a violent and messy death, and it stranded me on the side of the road when it went down.

There was nothing about that experience I recommend. That’s why I recommend tow trucks and such over further driving, lest you have to deal with a similar situation.

new video example
 
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