Ticking, clacking, or clicking noise coming from the engine of your Jeep Wrangler at idle mode is not only irritating to the ear of the driver and the passengers but it can also be a sign that something is wrong internally that requires attention and immediate action.
Your Jeep Wrangler can make ticking noises due to various reasons such as low engine level, damaged reciprocating or moving components, faulty spark plug, and so on. It is a great matter of concern as it can damage your engine permanently but you can solve this issue entirely by following proper guidelines and troubleshooting methods which are discussed below in detail.
Always follow basic safety procedures while troubleshooting your vehicle by wearing protective gloves, masks, glasses, and full-sleeved clothing.
How Can I Identify Normal Engine Sounds and Ticking Noise?
Some of the ticking noises are normal and happens due to the regular functions of various component of the car. You need to make sure that the ticking noises are not just products of regular function before taking steps to fix the problem. The components that cause ticking or clicking noise normally are described below.
Fuel injectors usually produce a ticking noise while they are functional. This ticking noise is quite low and gets reduced significantly when the vehicle is running. Faulty fuel injectors produce intense ticking noise. Symptoms like engine misfiring, engine stalling, overheating, and engine running too rich are signs that the fuel injectors might be faulty. Otherwise, ticking noises coming from the fuel injector are normal and do not require any fixing.
The purge valve is another component of the engine that makes a ticking noise. This happens when the purge valve releases the gases stored in the charcoal canister of the car into the engine’s intake manifold.
PCV or Positive Crankcase Ventilation is a one-way valve attached to the crankcase that consists of motor oil and produces gasses when the engine burns fuel. This valve normally makes ticking noises while opening and closing.
What Causes Jeep Wrangler Ticking Noise While Idling?
Low Oil Level
Low oil level is the most common reason behind unwanted ticking noise. A low oil level means that there are not sufficient levels of lubricants inside your car which means that lack of lubrication can cause various parts to collide with each other especially moving parts.
Solution: Check your oil level if you notice any unwanted ticking or clicking noise. Refill the engine oil if it is below sufficient level and change the oil entirely if it gets too dark. Regularly check the engine oil level and make sure to use high-quality engine oil as recommended by the manufacturer.
The hydraulic lifters in the engine are critical components because they control the opening and closing of the engine’s valves. Lifters can cause issues in the engine if they get damaged or worn out. Lifters can develop excessive clearance which allows them more place to move around and create a ticking noise.
Solution: You will need to replace the faulty lifters as soon as possible if such problems arise because faulty lifters can damage the entire engine if remain unchecked. A spare lifter will cost about $10-$50. Replacing the lifters of the engine can be a daunting task and might require professional care.
Exhaust systems can get damaged because of corrosion, failing gaskets, accidental damage, and wear and tear that comes with time and usage. Exhaust leakage can create a ticking noise coming from the car. Common signs of exhaust leakage include buzzing, hissing, or ticking noise, excessive vibrations, and worse gas mileage.
Solution: Repairing the exhaust system is the only solution to this problem which can be a difficult task and will need professional handling.
A noise valve train is a common reason behind the engine making ticking noises when it is idle. The engine valves open and close in intervals to ensure the smooth function of the engine but they can cause various issues like ticking noises when they get misaligned.
Solution: Adjust the misaligned valves according to the instruction manual provided with the car by the manufacturer. Take your Jeep Wrangler to a trusted workshop if the valves require replacement.
Damaged Spark Plugs
Spark plugs provide the necessary flicker to start the combustion process inside the cylinders of the engine of a car. A faulty, worn-out, or damaged spark plug can fail to spark and cause misfiring in the engine. This misfiring can cause ticking, clicking, and clattering noises.
Solution: Remove the battery connection and take out the spark plugs. Check them thoroughly and make sure there are no carbon or dust accumulations on the electrodes and the gap between the electrodes are at the correct level. Clean the spark plug with a dry cloth and adjust the gap accordingly. Replace the entire spark plug if it gets beyond repair. It will cost about $5-$15 for a spark plug.
Faulty Timing Chain
The timing chain synchronizes the rotation of the crankshaft and the camshaft. This chain can get worn out or misaligned over time. When the timing chain gets loose, it slaps against the other components near it and creates a ticking or tapping noise. This ticking noise is most noticeable when the car is idle. Other symptoms of a faulty timing chain include engine misfiring and poor fuel economy.
Solution: Faulty timing chains have to be replaced as soon as possible because it can lead to severe damage to the other parts of the engine. Properly lubricate the engine to reduce the risk of the timing chain getting worn out. Replace the timing chain if it gets too badly damaged.
Worn-out Engine Bearings
Engine bearings are designed to reduce friction between the moving or the reciprocating parts in the engine but when the bearings get damaged, this friction arises more frequently and results in unusual noises like clicking, clattering, and ticking sounds. Faulty bearings can cause serious damage to the engine if they remain unchecked.
Solution: Engine bearings need to be replaced if they get worn out or damaged. Take your car to a trusted workshop to get the engine bearings replaced.
Rod knock can also cause a clicking noise when they have excessive clearance and the connecting rod hits the metal in the engine. The connecting rod helps to reduce friction and ensures smooth operation and it produces a clicking noise when it gets damaged or worn out.
Solution: Replace the rod bearings to resolve this issue. It might require professional care to replace this component.
Clogged Fuel Injectors
Fuel injectors make ticking noises normally while the vehicle is operational but a clogged fuel injector creates excessive noise. They can also cause misfiring of the engine as the air-fuel mixture they provide is in the wrong proportion.
Solution: Check the fuel injector and clean it thoroughly around the nozzle. Replace the injector if it gets beyond repair. It will cost about $60-$120 for a spare fuel injector
Faulty Fuel Pump
A fuel pump delivers fuel to the engine but a faulty fuel pump can cause misfiring in the engine by providing an irregular flow of fuel. This can cause ticking noises coming from the engine.
Solution: Replace the fuel pump with a spare part to resolve this issue.
How Much Does It Cost to Fix Ticking Noise?
It may cost somewhere between $1000-$2000 to fix the problem of the ticking noise coming from your Jeep Wrangler depending on the price of the faulty component which needs replacing and the servicing cost of the workshop where you will take the car.
Is the Jeep Wrangler Ticking Noise Covered by Warranty?
Jeep usually provides three to five years of warranty for their Wrangler models that include a warranty for the engine. You will be covered by warranty if problems arise in parts covered by the warranty and the warranty covers that exact part which is causing the problems.
How to Prevent Jeep Wrangler Ticking Noise Problems?
Regular care and maintenance can help you prevent the issue of ticking noise arising on your Jeep Wrangler. Check engine oil regularly and make sure to change oil in time. Always keep all the parts lubricated by using good quality engine oil. Try to fix the problem as soon as it arises because it can lead to more severe problems.