Mazda 3 Intake Manifold Runner Noise

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229
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MI
Well as you can see in my signature I own a Mazda 3, 2.3 I always felt the hot idle was slightly noisy and I found alot of people say "ticking is being caused by flaps in the variable air intake system" and can be fixed by replacing the manifolds? What!? confused confused This is not my Mazda 3, but it literally sounds 100% EXACTLY like this. I tried it on my own mazda and the "knocking" quieted down completely and sounded like new. Watch this video, he unplugged something and it stopped the "knocking" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_O8qSw4dxII Please whats your input on this?? & what could happen if I just leave it be?
 
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There is a series of flaps in the intake manifold that change the intake run length when opened/closed. They guy in the video simply unplugged the electrical connection to the solenoid valve that controls flap operation. This probably closes the flaps. I don't have knocking/ticking at idle, but when lightly accelerating, I can hear the tick at around 2k RPM. I would never go through the expanse of replacing the manifold just to fix this issue, especially since it won't hurt anything. Worst case scenario would be losing some of the high RPM power when the flaps fail to operate, but in everyday driving you won't notice a thing.
 

Josh48065

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229
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MI
Originally Posted By: KrisZ
Worst case scenario would be losing some of the high RPM power when the flaps fail to operate, but in everyday driving you won't notice a thing.
I really appreicate your input, ive been reading on the Mazda 3 forums too, but BITOG users seem much more education. It makes me feel much better it wouldn't be harmful if it left it alone. There is another thread on this on a different website and someone said.. ------------------- "I was at the dealer getting oil change and I enquired about the price of a manifold( because I have this same sound as was originally posted ). They asked me why would I want the price of that. I went on to explain why with the noise and how people were figuring it out by unplugging the one valve. They had me show the mechanic. So I let him hear the noise then showed him how the noise went away by unplugging the solenoid. He then unplugged the hose that is on the bottom of the solenoid and put his finger over the hose itself. When he did that the noise stopped. He said its not the exhaust manifold its that solenoid valve thats stuck open which is only about $100. Now I didnt buy that valve yet cause I havent had the money. Has anyone else just tried replacing that valve? Its ALOT less expensive and easier than buying and replacing the manifold itself." ------------------ Does this seem possible too?
 
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14,505
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Top of Virginia
The question is, why are the flaps "flapping"? They should be either open or closed. If they quit flapping with the solenoid unplugged, it seems like it'd be either a faulty solenoid or faulty signal from the ECU.
 
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14,505
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Top of Virginia
Originally Posted By: Josh48065
Has anyone else just tried replacing that valve? Its ALOT less expensive and easier than buying and replacing the manifold itself.
I posted my reply after you posted yours. Yes, I think replacing just the solenoid itself would be the right move. If the flaps were always flapping in the breeze, solenoid unplugged or not, you'd come to the conclusion that they come loose from the shaft or something else internal to the manifold. But if they quit making noise when you disable the solenoid, you can conclude that it's either the solenoid or ECU signal that's the culprit. If replacing the manifold ALSO gets you a new solenoid, I'd agree that the solenoid is suspect. If you can replace the solenoid by itself, I think that'd be my first move.
 
Problem is, are you able to buy the valve? If you go to the dealer, they will say that manifold replacement is needed. I had a similar thing happen with the accessory belt tensioner pulley. The bearing was shot and the pulley was squeaking a lot in cold whether. I went to the dealer parts counter and they only had a whole tensioner assembly. Good thing I could find the same pulley from Dayco. Difference here is that I had to change the pulley or risk accessory belt snapping and overheating the engine, so if I could not find the pulley I would have to bite the bullet and get the tensioner assembly. This intake flapper issue is not that big of a deal, but if you can find the valve, I say change it.
 
Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
The question is, why are the flaps "flapping"? They should be either open or closed. If they quit flapping with the solenoid unplugged, it seems like it'd be either a faulty solenoid or faulty signal from the ECU.
My take on this is the vacuum control valve. The solenoid only controls vacuum, and if that valve is dirty or not closing properly, it may give enough vacuum for the flaps to, hmm... flap LOL.
 

Josh48065

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229
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MI
Originally Posted By: KrisZ
Problem is, are you able to buy the valve? If you go to the dealer, they will say that manifold replacement is needed. I had a similar thing happen with the accessory belt tensioner pulley. The bearing was shot and the pulley was squeaking a lot in cold whether. I went to the dealer parts counter and they only had a whole tensioner assembly. Good thing I could find the same pulley from Dayco. Difference here is that I had to change the pulley or risk accessory belt snapping and overheating the engine, so if I could not find the pulley I would have to bite the bullet and get the tensioner assembly. This intake flapper issue is not that big of a deal, but if you can find the valve, I say change it.
Yea thats what I was thinking too, I imagine it would be hard to find the valve itself. Is there a specific name for it so I can try searching on the Internet for it? Edit: After reading that post you just made, is it the "vacuum control vavle"?
 
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5,091
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USA
Usually when there is a problem with those flaps it will throw a CEL code.Its something like "secondary air intake" or something like that.Company Ranger 2.3 has had numerous issues with that stupid system.Generally the engines go 200K plus before bottom end knocking sounds occur... Great mileage too for a Ranger 26-32 stop and go. Acceleration on the highway is pretty bad though,far worse than the hp figures would make one think.
 
Originally Posted By: NHGUY
Usually when there is a problem with those flaps it will throw a CEL code.Its something like "secondary air intake" or something like that.Company Ranger 2.3 has had numerous issues with that stupid system.Generally the engines go 200K plus before bottom end knocking sounds occur... Great mileage too for a Ranger 26-32 stop and go. Acceleration on the highway is pretty bad though,far worse than the hp figures would make one think.
I don't think that Mazda 3 shares the same engine as the Ranger, but I could be wrong. Anyway, the flaps are not a secondary air intake. They are part of the intake manifold and their purpose is to shorten the intake run at high RPM for a bit of hp gain. It's a clever solution that provides longer intake run at lower RPMs for better low end torque, and short intake run for better power at high RPMs, it's like having two intake manifolds in one.
 
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An alternative design, instead of using flaps, is to use a cylinder inside the intake. The cylinder will spin which opens up the short run of the intake. An example is shown below. I won't list the engine brand because it's not important, but look on the left side of the image, the device in the intake manifold that looks like it has cooling fins. This will spin. In this photo, the short run is open. If that cylinder spins about 90* clockwise, the short run is blocked off and the long run is used. It avoids problems like this; there are no flaps to potentially fail and make noise, though I suppose the cylinder could still fail or stick in one position.
 
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13,378
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ROCHESTER, NY
My daughters '06 mazda3 2.0L "just started" making this noise that is being described here. It's not noisy per say, it's just noticable. I have never noticed it prior to this OCI! 3 weeks ago, I changed the oil/filter and now I hear the noise/ticking under the engine compartment. I thought it was the OCI. PEAK 5W30/Puro Classic #10241. That is the same exact combo that was in the engine for the previous OCI. This PEAK is the last of that FAR stash. I had been using other oils for winter time... Next 6 OCI's will be with(temp dependant) Havoline DS 5W20 & 5W30 w/Puro Classic #10241 The ticking is only while idling, not at startup nor while driving normaly or even high reving.
 
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Josh48065

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229
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MI
Originally Posted By: Char Baby
My daughters '06 mazda3 2.0L "just started" making this noise that is being described here. It's not noisy per say, it's just noticable. I have never noticed it prior to this OCI! The ticking is only while idling, not at startup nor while driving normaly or even high reving.
Yes same, I only notice it when the engine is at operating temp and idling. You are right though, I do agree its not "noisy" but its rather annoying and kinda sounds like my engine has a tick... Maybe im just too picky..? -------- I really do appreciate all the comments guys. I do kinda have a stupid question, my buddy is a good mechanic and would probably help me if I asked. I also read online that replacing the solenoid actually didn't fix the problem. cry Ive heard some say replace the "Manifold" and others say replace the intake manifold. I would just have to replace the intake manifold and not the whole manifold component correct..?
 
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13,378
Location
ROCHESTER, NY
Josh, Someone other than me would have to answer your question on that because IDK exactly where the ticking is coming from...Sorry! I probably won't further investigate the matter 'til it becomes more of a problem. Hope you get your answer smile
 
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13,378
Location
ROCHESTER, NY
Well, she came home from Buffalo to Rochester early this week as she has some work to do here and, I don't hear the ticking anymore...at all! Maybe what I was hearing isn't the exact same as yours Josh. I do hope you find the correct answer that your looking for.
 
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1
Location
Albuquerque, NM
Hi all! I joined this forum because I found this thread. I just wanted to input that I would suspect the VTCS solenoid long before the entire intake manifold and maybe even the valves themselves. The gentleman who runs www.onlinemazdaparts.com has an awesome supply of OEM and OE Mazda parts and he carries the VTCS Solenoid. However, you must specify if you have the 2.3l or the 2.0l because the part is different for each engine. The exact part number is L301-18-741 for the solenoid for the 2.3l. I hope this helps!
 
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