01 Infiniti QX4, Loud Cold Start. flush?

Messages
20
Location
Denver
Hello, I appreciate any advice with this problem I've been having. I purchased a 2001 Infiniti QX4 (same engine as a 2001 Nissan Pathfinder) on 07/05/2014 from a local used car dealership. At the time of purchase, I noticed the vehicle had a loud start. I checked the oil and found it was about quart low. I bought the car with the promise to fix any oil leaks; fortunately, there were none and the car just was low. Since I've owned the car, I've noticed a consistent problem. Every time I start the car first thing in the morning, or anytime it has been sitting for a longtime (maybe 6+ hours) there is a loud start (loud rattle noise) for a few seconds then goes away. No matter how many times I start it the rest of the day, there isn't anymore problems unless it sits for a while. I was hopeful that an oil change would have fixed this. I changed the oil to Mobil 1 High Mileage 5w30 Full synthetic with a new filter (Purolater) and the problem still exists? It has been approx. 1200 miles since I changed the oil. Any ideas of what can fix this? I'm hoping it isn't serious. The truck is good shape other than this. Should I change the oil frequently for a while? I also considered a flush to help clear out any sludge, but I'm hesitant. Quick Overview: 2001 Infiniti QX4 Currently running Mobil 1 High Mileage 5w30 Full Synthetic (Is this great to run?) Purolater Oil Filter LOUD rattle noise on cold start for a few seconds Noise doesn't happen unless vehicle sits for a while. Unknown maintenance history/ Possible neglect (carfax shows vehicle was a lease for 9 years and 2 owners owning for a short amount of time) and vehicle was 1 quart low at time of purchase Quick history, Owner 1: Lease 9 years, Owner 2: Owned 2 years, Owner 3: Owned 2 years, Owner 4: Me Owner's Manual calls for: -5w30 SAE -API Certification Mark -API Grade SG/SH, Energy Conserving I & II or API Grade SJ, Energy Conserving -ILSAC grade GF-1 & GF-I I appreciate any help! Thank You!
 
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Messages
778
Location
Southeast Michigan
Sounds very similar to a TSB that Toyota issued on the 2GR-FE 3.5 L V6. IIRC, the cam phaser would drain and allow the timing chain to rattle at startup. The fix was replacing the feed line to the phaser... I had it done under warranty, and it started again shortly before I unloaded the RAV4.
 
Messages
25,815
Location
Upstate NY
I would strongly suggest against a flush. Change the oil filter to a different brand (and better grade). If it still persists then you may need to follow through on the timing chain as others have mentioned.
 
Messages
12,925
Location
Northern Kentucky
What Purolator filter did you use? The Purolator classic has a nitrile anti drain back valve and is cheaper than the silicone based valves. Try a Fram Tough Guard filter and see if it helps. The tough guard has a silicone valve.
 
Messages
24,456
Location
Dallas,Tx USA
Try draining the oil and refilling with a sightly thicker conventional oil. 10W30 Pennzoil,Valvoline,Quaker State,or Castrol GTX (and any of these in the high mileage formulas as well if you like) w/Nissan OEM oil filter and see if the startup rattle goes away.
 
Messages
1,848
Location
FEMA Region 4
I have used various motor flushes in the past in some pretty nasty engines and had pretty good results with it. I use one consistently on my truck every oil change. Its not a miracle cure, but it can help if it is a gunk related problem. YMMV though. Good luck!
 

Legend11

Thread starter
Messages
20
Location
Denver
I'm pretty sure it's the cheap Purolator. I will try swapping out filter's first to see if it goes away. If it doesn't, what oil change interval do you guys recommend? Right now I'm sitting at about 1200 miles since I first changed it. I have no problem spending a little money to "cleanse" this car a bit. I'm sure hoping it's nothing too serious, but got to start somewhere. I will do the following: Change the Filter to the one's mentioned above and report back. Thanks
 
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