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Does anyone know what this ticking noise is?


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The video below's obviously not a Legacy but on my 14 Legacy I'm hearing the same thing. Thing ticks faster when I accelerate around 1500 rpm's, then stops when I let off the gas or hit above 2000 rpm's or so. But I will hear it as it is in the video when I'm sitting in the driveway.

Thanks

 

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It's very difficult to diagnose sounds over the internet, especially when we get a video of someone else's car...

 

Have you tried changing the weight of the oil to see if it has any effect on the noise you are hearing?

 

The sound may happen all the time and you can only hear it at the times you are describing. An easier way to know is to get some microphones/chassis ears to pinpoint the origin of the noise under the hood.

 

Tell us a little about your car, you dropped a vague question without many clues for us to help you with.

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The previous owner did an oil change right before I bought it a few days ago. This is my first car so I'm learning. Maybe I'll run and get a mechanic stethoscope.

 

just a regular wrench, ratchet extension or screwdriver with a solid core (one you could hammer on) works about as well, if you can get your head down on it if you want to try and poke around before spending the money

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The thing you're looking at is a fuel injector, and they do generally make a pretty noticeable ticking noise. The ticking in that video sounds pretty much exactly like what I'm used to hearing on both of my cars, so assuming that's actually what you're hearing, that's pretty normal.

 

Like stewdogg said, though, it's hard to diagnose most sounds over the internet, so if you're in doubt, take it somewhere. Another good option would be to find a friend who also drives a Subaru (preferably around the same model year, give or take a little) and take a listen around their engine- if everything sounds more or less the same, you're probably in good shape, but if something sounds drastically different, you may want to do some more digging.

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What you don't want to hear is rod knock, which that is not.

You don't want this sound!

Here's one that's really bad in an STi

And another one that's not so bad (in an NA engine)

 

Subaru's are also prone to piston slap, which is most noticeable when the engine is cold

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My Baja has some pretty noticeable slap until everything gets up to temperature, and I'd say what's in the video probably isn't that. It's more noticeable, and way more scary sounding if you don't know that it's basically harmless.
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You never mentioned if it was 5MT or 5EAT. Ticking like that can come from a broken flex plate (plate torque converter bolts to for 5EAT) and if it's ticking now, it will just get worse over time and eventually fail.

 

IF it's 5EAT, crawl underneath and remove the inspection cover and begin looking upwards with a strong flashlight and look for cracks. If you have access to a boroscope, you can also fish it up inside and see if you can visualize any cracks between the holes in the flex plate.

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