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Cold start rattle on LS3 - piston slap :) Engine replaced

Anthony121

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My dealer explained that some level of noise is acceptable at cold start, but if it is really bad (which mine was) they are oblidged to sort it out...
It comes down to persistence, documenting, videos and the dealer itself.
It took me 2 years for Holden to admit mine was really bad before they replaced the engine...
That's a long time. My car has less than 6 months warranty now and need to get them to see the slap again. Too easy for the ******* to say it's normal.
 

Paulie81

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My 2016 SSVR is a slapper ;) I describe it as being similar to the sound of a diesel engine, just not as loud.

There are countless online examples of Chevy LS engine owners with similar sounds emitting from their engine during cold startup. The slapping noise is due to the short piston skirts GM use on the LS series of engines which are designed to create more efficiency by reducing piston weight. In my case and many others, the noise fades away after the engine reaches operating temperature (which can take up to 10mins). The pistons expand when hot which tighten the clearances against the cylinders thus minimising piston slap. There are variances in each engine and apparently Chevy no longer measure piston clearances per cylinder so all it takes is one piston with a higher clearance to start slapping away.

As much as I don't like it, it seems to be normal for these engines. I don't recall my car having the noise when new so I think its something that develops over time. Pretty sure mine appeared after 10,000kms of City driving but I could be wrong and it was there all along.
 

eman1

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Mine made some noise (only for the first 1-2 minutes of use) but eventually I accepted it was part of the engine. Once I cammed the car its not noticeable as the whole engine has a lot of valve train noise.
 

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My 2016 SSVR is a slapper ;) I describe it as being similar to the sound of a diesel engine, just not as loud.

There are countless online examples of Chevy LS engine owners with similar sounds emitting from their engine during cold startup. The slapping noise is due to the short piston skirts GM use on the LS series of engines which are designed to create more efficiency by reducing piston weight. In my case and many others, the noise fades away after the engine reaches operating temperature (which can take up to 10mins). The pistons expand when hot which tighten the clearances against the cylinders thus minimising piston slap. There are variances in each engine and apparently Chevy no longer measure piston clearances per cylinder so all it takes is one piston with a higher clearance to start slapping away.

As much as I don't like it, it seems to be normal for these engines. I don't recall my car having the noise when new so I think its something that develops over time. Pretty sure mine appeared after 10,000kms of City driving but I could be wrong and it was there all along.
Or just poor quality control. Short skirt pistons yes but then the newer style pistons are made of a material that expand less so require less piston to bore clearance to begin with which should eliminate the piston slap problem which then brings us back to poor quality control.
 

lmoengnr

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Or just poor quality control. Short skirt pistons yes but then the newer style pistons are made of a material that expand less so require less piston to bore clearance to begin with which should eliminate the piston slap problem which then brings us back to poor quality control.
Put together in Mexico...
Could be worse, made in China...
 

Nastas_VF

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Another slapper here. My 15 S2 SS sounds just like Ron's before videos. Wish i pushed the issue while i had warranty but now im out ive accepted it. I just try to make the most of the remote start to warm it up before driving. My main concern now is whether it devalues the car if I ever choose to sell.
 

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If it sounds as bad as Ron's did, heck yeah it would devalue it. Even a noob to Commy's would know something ain't right.
 

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Then again, said noob probably wouldn't be touching headers to check that you haven't warmed her up like probably most of us on this forum would be. Caveat Emptor.
 

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I've complained 3 times now to the dealer so it is on record that it has piston slap when cold, the car was under warranty and 2 years old when I bought it, I have a dash recording of them doing a cold start when I left it there over night, lifted bonnet started car, gave it a little rev and service manger came out and said this is normal, just like the LS1 and shut the bonnet without driving it, just recently I left my car with them for 5 weeks while I went overseas to fix rattle in dash they created by pulling dash out to replace A/C unit and this time they said they took a audio recording and sent to Holden and they said it was normal. I live on a hill so in the morning when driving off, I have to drive up the hill when the knock it very prominent, the dealership is on flat ground and only slightly knocks.
Funny thing is that I did my mechanics apprenticeship and was warranty claims and assistant service manger 30 years ago there, but the family owned business is now owned by a big group dealer and loyalty doesn't matter.
 

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I should really stop reading threads like this, makes me paranoid that my engine is making "new unwanted" noises all over again... lol
 

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I should really stop reading threads like this, makes me paranoid that my engine is making "new unwanted" noises all over again... lol
Turn the music up :)
 

Milo 6.0

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Louder exhaust....
 

Mayuri Krab

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Was there any noticable tap/knock sound when idling or revved in Park/netural?

My paranoid got the best of me and ever since reading this thread and watching/listening to the clips posted by the OP...

now I swear I'm hearing random noises while driving all the time now (even when warmed up) lol... however can't seem to find that noise while checking the engine at idle or lightly revving it (to 2k-2.5k rpm)...

Probably all in my head, slowly going insane lol
 

Ron Burgundy

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Was there any noticable tap/knock sound when idling or revved in Park/netural?

My paranoid got the best of me and ever since reading this thread and watching/listening to the clips posted by the OP...

now I swear I'm hearing random noises while driving all the time now (even when warmed up) lol... however can't seem to find that noise while checking the engine at idle or lightly revving it (to 2k-2.5k rpm)...

Probably all in my head, slowly going insane lol
There was no noise on idle or when reved in park in my case...
 

Paulie81

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Interestingly I could not hear the noise on mine when I cold started it yesterday. I filled up using BP 95 instead of my usual choice of 98 a few days ago. Could fuel type make any difference??
 

Ron Burgundy

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Interestingly I could not hear the noise on mine when I cold started it yesterday. I filled up using BP 95 instead of my usual choice of 98 a few days ago. Could fuel type make any difference??
No...
I had mornings where i could not hear anything and then tried to analyse why...
Pretty sure you will hear it again
 

Mayuri Krab

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Why did you remove the 2nd video OP?

Lol
 

Mayuri Krab

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Well I just booked my car in for a check up this coming Friday. Maybe I'm losing my mind, but I keep on hearing a whine like hollowish rattle like sound under load, most noticable between 2k to 3k rpm, anything higher or wot, exhaust and other drivetrain noises covers it up...

Let's see what the stealer says.
 

Ron Burgundy

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Well I just booked my car in for a check up this coming Friday. Maybe I'm losing my mind, but I keep on hearing a whine like hollowish rattle like sound under load, most noticable between 2k to 3k rpm, anything higher or wot, exhaust and other drivetrain noises covers it up...

Let's see what the stealer says.
Keep us posted
 
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