2001 Ford Escort



March, 18, 2008 AT 2:41 AM

Engine Mechanical problem
2001 Ford Escort 4 cyl Two Wheel Drive Automatic 116000 miles

I own a 2001 Ford Escort I was heaing a spitting sound and the car would run a little rough at a stop then I went to work and shut the car off after work started fine drove about 3 blocks and stopped at a store got back in the car and tried to start it and it made a pop sound and would not turn over at all. Wait a few moments and tried again it turned over and started but is running really rough and making a loud tappin noise in the engine had it towed home told it was the timming belt so I tried to retime it using the same belt to mke sure its the problem (can see clean black marks on bottem parts of the lobes on the belt) Started it still making tapping sound. Removed spak plaugs to inspect the tops of the pistons number 3 plug has a bent anode tops of pistons look ine from what I can see. Replaced plugs and idles norma but still making tapping sound. Sounds like something is in the cylinder bouncing around or the piston is hitting something. Not sure whats going on can anyone give me some where to start at I'm down to one car and me and my wife both work need help ASAP! Thanks


3 Answers


Ed Armes

March, 18, 2008 AT 9:16 PM

When ever a timing belt slips it means that the crankshaft and camshaft are no longer in proper sequence to allow the travel of the piston and opening of the valves to happen as required for engine function. That is why it would not run correctly.

When you say the plug was damaged, was any of the porcelan insulator at the bottom of the plug missing. That porcelan may be still in the cylinder. It is possible to pull the plug again and see if you are getting any denting of the piston or see any place where something may have knocked carbon off the piston and left a cleanspot here and there.

The bad side of your senario is the fact that the valves were opening when they should not. When this happens ( especially at highway speeds ) the valves may come in contact with the pistons. This can either slightly bend a valve ( which will then make a tapping sound as it is not closing perfectly in the seat, but can still run fairly smoothly ) or could totally wreck the valve train and destroy pistons.

The best thing that could happen is that you have only bent a rocker arm, push rod or collapsed lifter. This depends on which engine you have. This will also cause a tapping noise due to extra clearance in the valve operation. These are probably the cheapiest fix. You can remove the valve cover only to fix some of this.

You need to do a compression test to determine if you have a bent valve. If you have a 10-15 pound diference between any of the cylinders then it is possible a valve is bent. A bent valve will destroy itself and/or the cylinder head in a short while of driving.

Best I can do with information provided.



March, 21, 2008 AT 10:01 PM

The plug was only bent slightly noe of te porcelin was damaged. I did do a compression test and the #3 cylinder has zero comp. Cylinders, 2, and 4 all have 90 to 100 psi. The #3 piston looks like a valve might have tapped it. The car was stopped when this happened I was in a paking lot. So I'm assuming I need to replace the valve, timming belt, head gasket, head resurfaced, and need to rplace the water pump while it's down this far.

Thank You So much for the help.


Ed Armes

March, 22, 2008 AT 12:13 PM

Anytime you have " 0" compression is definitely time for a tear down. Also anytime compression is below 100 in a cylinder is time for a tear down regardless of what the other cylinders are.

You are smart replaceing anything that is more accessible during tear down and replace all belts and hose that are suspect. : D

Please login or register to post a reply.

Crankshaft Position Sensor Replace Chevrolet
Crank Angle Sensor Replacement Mercedes Benz
Fuel Pump Replacement
Fuel Pump Test Chevy Tahoe