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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, maybe you can give me some ideas of what to try or look at next, or what might be going on.

I started hearing a quiet ticking noise from the engine at low RPM a couple months ago, but more recently it's gotten louder. It goes away completely when I rev past 2k RPM, and I've not noticed any performance issues at all, the car seems to run perfectly. Just the worrying ticking noise.

Here's a quick video for example:

Engine is at 160k miles, oil always changed every 3-5k, timing belt replaced at about 130k. Last oil change was a month ago / 1k ago, 5w30 synthetic blend with OEM hyundai filter. I read some threads saying it could possibly be the lash adjusters, and to make sure I'm using an OEM filter and such. I just added some Seafoam to the crank case to see if that helps, as suggested by some threads, so we'll see if that changes anything after the oil change in 150ish miles.

My buddy seems to think it's a rod knocking or something other than the HLA's, which certainly has me fearing the worst. What do you guys think, any suggestions?
 

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that does not sound like lifter noise. that sounds like rod knock
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
When last was your timing belt replaced? And did you replace the tensioner?
About two years ago, ~30k miles ago. And yeah replaced the tensioner
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Turns out, it was the timing belt tensioner! The seal had broken and leaked hydraulic fluid everywhere, so there was no pressure and the timing belt was loose and flapping around which made the tensioner pulley assembly rattle against the tensioner. Absolutely terrifying to see in action, think I dodged a bullet here. Quick run to the local auto parts store for a new tensioner, and the tib is back up and running smooth as ever (y)

Not sure if related, but I'd bought the more expensive Aisin timing belt + component kit from rockauto when I did the timing belt replacement. Went with Gates this time as recommended by others here in the past, though it does plainly say "Made in China" on it now. Whether that means a change in quality or not, we'll see, but I'm sure it's fine.
 

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More expensive isn't always better. The Gates kits are fine for us even after the Chinese manufacturing started. People who complain about Chinese manufacturing are living in the past. The Subaru guys were complaining that their Gates kits were failing when manufacturing moved to China but so far we have anecdotal evidence that it's actually the Japanese NTK manufactured bearings/pulleys that were failing prematurely on the Subarus. Charlie has commented about this in the past since he's our resident Subaru expert lol.

So far the only Gates failures that I've witnessed were more likely user error on the installation. The people who posted about the Gates failures haven't really shown their mechanical ability very well on the Tiburon social media groups. I'm just shy of 130k on my Tiburon and I'm going to install my 2nd Chinese manufactured Gates kit. I'm not even concerned at all with the quality or longevity.
 

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Turns out, it was the timing belt tensioner! The seal had broken and leaked hydraulic fluid everywhere, so there was no pressure and the timing belt was loose and flapping around which made the tensioner pulley assembly rattle against the tensioner. Absolutely terrifying to see in action, think I dodged a bullet here. Quick run to the local auto parts store for a new tensioner, and the tib is back up and running smooth as ever (y)

Not sure if related, but I'd bought the more expensive Aisin timing belt + component kit from rockauto when I did the timing belt replacement. Went with Gates this time as recommended by others here in the past, though it does plainly say "Made in China" on it now. Whether that means a change in quality or not, we'll see, but I'm sure it's fine.
I knew that was the noise
 
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