A camshaft is an important part of your vehicle’s engine, which is responsible for the opening and closing of your valves, the devices that let or restrict the flow of fluid or gas to and from the combustion chambers during engine operation.
Unfortunately, a problematic camshaft can sometimes create a disturbing knocking noise, leaving you wondering, “What causes a camshaft knocking noise?” Another question is, can a camshaft cause engine knock?
Can a camshaft really cause engine knock?
The short answer is YES. An engine knock can be caused by a lot of things including a failing fuel injection system. It should be noted that a bad injector may put too much fuel in the cylinder, or fuel at the wrong time, causing a pre-ignite and eventually a knocking engine.
Yet the camshaft is a component of your engine’s fuel injection system. That means a problem with it may create a problem for your fuel injection system, leading to a knocking engine.
So, what causes a camshaft knocking noise?
To start with, some engines have only one camshaft, whereas others have up to two. To answer the question, a camshaft knocking noise could be a result of a damaged, poorly aligned, or slipping timing belt.
For starters, this is just a belt that connects the camshaft to and synchronizes it with the crankshaft. This action ensures that the engine’s valves open and close at the correct times, depending on the pistons’ position.
The Causes of a Camshaft Noise in the Engine
As said earlier, a camshaft noise can be caused by a damaged, poorly aligned, or slipping timing belt. As you already know, the timing belt is the belt that connects the camshaft to and synchronizes it with the crankshaft to ensure that the engine’s valves open and close at the correct times,
Now, if the timing belt is damaged or poorly aligned, or if it keeps on slipping, it may not be able to do its job(synchronize the camshaft and the crankshaft) effectively.
Poor synchronization between the two mechanical components may mean that the engine valves are unable to open and close at the correct times to allow or restrict the flow of fluid or gas to and from the combustion chambers or cylinders.
This can directly lead to a misfire, a major knocking cause for motor vehicle engines.
An In-Depth Explanation of Solutions for The Camshaft Noise
Again, the camshaft noise can be blamed on a damaged, poorly aligned, or slipping timing belt. That means the solution to this problem lies in fixing or replacing the belt.
If the belt is damaged, replacing it with a new one will resolve the problem. If it’s poorly aligned or slipping, aligning it properly or making it stop slipping, again, will get rid of the knocking problem. Speaking of which, this video shows you how to align the timing belt.
When it comes to slipping, your timing belt may keep on slipping due to several reasons some of which may not even be related to the belt itself.
These include improper timing belt tension as well as the wear and tear of the belt teeth, cogs, or sprockets. How about you watch this video to learn how to tighten your belt tensioner pulley to adjust your tension accordingly?
Also, this second video shows how to replace belt sprockets like a professional.
How Much Does It Cost to Fix a Camshaft Knock
A camshaft knock is not cheap to fix as it costs between $2000 and $3000. These costs include both labor and parts. But that’s not all since the cost may even be higher sometimes, especially if the damage has affected other components of your engine.
A knocking sound coming from your engine is one of the worst nightmares you can have as a car owner. This problem is usually caused by several issues with a bad camshaft being one of the top culprits.
Your camshaft may make a disturbing knocking noise if it’s damaged, poorly aligned by the timing belt, or if the timing belt keeps on slipping. If ignored, the knocking can lead to other serious problems, which could be very expensive to repair in the long run.