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Unread 12-08-2006, 07:01 PM   #1
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1991 YJ Wrangler 
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Location: GR Michigan
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Sticky Lifter

Over the past few weeks I have noticed a little knock when at idle. I have traced it down to a sticky lifter in one of my back 2 cylinders of the 4.0. A mechanic friend of mine told my to try a little tranny fluid in the crankcase, otherwise it could get costly. I put in some Seafoam instead with a new oil change. I drove it about 1000 miles and it was still knocking. I did another oil change with more seafoam and am still getting the knock. Has anyone else had this problem? Any tips? If I need to get it fixed, how much am I looking at pricewise?

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Unread 12-09-2006, 07:32 AM   #2
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1993 YJ Wrangler 
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You need to get that lifter out of your could damage your cam and then it gets costly. Lifters are relatively cheap to purchase from a parts store. All you need to do is take off your valve cover, crank the engine (watch out! this can get messy!), Isolate the lifter by listening and pushing down hard on the rocker arms while the engine idles. When you push down on your culprit lifter, the tick should get very loud. You'll know it when you hear it. Once you find your dud lifter, you can kill the engine. Then, remove that rocker and rocker arm and you should be able to see your lifter down in the hole. If it isn't completely mushroomed, you should be able to use a strong telescopic magnet to just lift it out, and then drop your new one in. If it's jammed, then you may have to get crafty. (The dealership uses a special lifter-extractor tool, but I'm sure it isn't cheap). Any how, when the old lifter's out, put the new one in, rocker arm and rocker back on properly,run the engine to make sure it runs right (a light lifter tick is to be expected until it settles), then put everything back in the proper order at the proper torque, wipe everything down, add oil if you need it, and you should be good to go. If your lucky, a 2-3 hour job. It'll cost you around $10 for the lifter and $8 for the valve cover gasket. Or you could just pay a trusted mechanic to do it and it shouldn't cost TOO much.

Hope that helps, and if I missed or overlooked anything I hope someone will let you know.

Bret Buchanan
'93 4-Banger, RE 4" lift, 33" x 10.50s (soon)

Last edited by Bret93YJ; 12-09-2006 at 09:44 AM..
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Unread 12-09-2006, 07:46 AM   #3
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1989 YJ Wrangler 
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great post! i'm sure MANY people have lifter tick and are unsure about how to fix it without paying a mechanic....
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Unread 12-09-2006, 11:08 AM   #4
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Recalling some other posts. You can remove the lifter on a 2.5L without removing the head, but on a 4.0L, you need to remove the cylinder head to access the lifters.

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Unread 12-09-2006, 11:16 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Mark_ZZ3
Recalling some other posts. You can remove the lifter on a 2.5L without removing the head, but on a 4.0L, you need to remove the cylinder head to access the lifters.


That is correct, however I thought I had seen it mentioned (again in previous threads/posts) that some people had managed to get them out without pulling the head. However I could be wrong on that part.
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Unread 12-09-2006, 11:54 AM   #6
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The holes in the 258/4.0 heads are only big enough for the pushrod to go thru. The head has to come off to swap lifters in these engines.
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