Timing chain question

Tiny
JOSH SPURLOCK
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 FORD EXPLORER
  • 4.0L
  • 6 CYL
  • RWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 245,000 MILES
My SUV has a 4.0 sohc. What is the probability that replacing the tensoners (springy bolt-like bolt) on the timing chain could stop rattling from timing chain. It only rattles once warm (idling, going through town, etc.) But sometime at a constant slow acceleration it will stop and be smooth as new. I am in a really tight spot and hope it could last a month or so.
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Monday, January 9th, 2017 AT 7:19 PM

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Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
What does one month have to do with the problem? Are you hoping the engine will last a month until you can do the repairs, or are you hoping the engine will last for a month after the repairs are done?

The concern is whether the chain will jump a tooth or two, and that is not likely to happen if it has not by now. At the mileage you listed, consider replacing the chain, the guides, and the sprockets as a matched set. The camshaft sprocket often has plastic teeth to reduce noise. Those wear down a lot faster than steel teeth. Replacement sprockets are usually made of steel and are higher quality. You are not likely to notice any additional noise. We have been using steel sprockets to replace plastic or nylon sprockets for many decades.
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Monday, January 9th, 2017 AT 7:27 PM
Tiny
JOSH SPURLOCK
  • MEMBER
I was wondering if it would help the rattling for a month or so so I could save money to fix it correctly.
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Monday, January 9th, 2017 AT 8:00 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Replacing tensioners and guides is ninety five percent of the total job. Why would you go through all that work and expense, then do it all over again later? That would be like a doctor operating to verify you have a tumor, then closing you up until he can unzip you a month later to remove it. It would have only taken another five minutes the first time.
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Tuesday, January 10th, 2017 AT 3:39 PM

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