noisy lifter when cold


Oct 10, 2001
just recently when i start my car cold i hear my lifter or two making a tapping noise only when the car is cold, never after it warms up, the noise last for about 5- 8 seconds it sounds like a lifter is bleeding down then finally fills up. im running 10 30 weight oil, never did this before only when temps went into the 30's. should i use a different oil or readjust my rockers, i m using a billet roller from pte, t d rollers. what should i do is this not a big deal . please help
Sounds like maybe the oil filter is draining back, have you tried a different filter? If its in the stock location you want to make sure that the anti drainback valve is good in it before you put it on. Do you have an oil psi gauge? If so, does the pressure come up very fast when you start it?
FWIW & IMHO: from my experience, will do the same thing if the oil level is not kept up to where it should be, or if it is allowed to get low enough. Generally, about 3/4 of a quart or a quart low will bring the lifter noise upon start-up, even in a warm type climate.
Sure it is a lifter and not a cam sensor. I had a similiar problem as soon as the weather dropped, the ticking began. Borrowed the wifes stethoscope and found the cam sensor ticking . As soon as the oil heated up, it went away.
Try MARVEL Mystery Oil sub a qt at the next oil change and it will clean up the motor and quiet noisy/stickin' lifters. It has stopped top end tap on a ford 460, 351 c, SBC 400, slant six, my 87 gn, so it works.

But if you live where it gets pretty cold and you are using 20w 50/thicker viscosity all motors will tap a little first thing when the oil/motor is cold and you crank er up