Toyota RAV4 Forums banner

Tapping noise when temperature goes up in the car

899 Views 11 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Amine
Hello everyone! I have a 2021 RAV4 LE which I just got this January.

My car has been making a tapping noise for a while. During the first couple months when it was still cold in Toronto, it didn't make any noise on start up, but after a 5-10 minutes driving when the temperature inside went up, it started making a tapping sound that sort of sounds like a major exhaust leak. The frequency of the tapping increases with RPM and gradually gets louder the longer I drive. If I park the car and let it cool down for 30-60 minutes is goes away or at least gets quieter.

Now that summer has come, it is making the noise every single time after parked outdoor under the sun, even just for a few minutes. The noise does go away in about 20 minutes when I turn on the AC and keep the air recirculation mode at the same time.

I did bring my car to the dealership and was told that the sounds were caused by injection mode switching to port injection and direct injection. Well, let's be frank, they didn't even bother to reproduce the noise to diagnose the issue in the first place. Moreover, I don't think that any normal sounds would last that long and would be caused by rising temperature in the car.

Therefore, I'm posting here to see if anyone has every had this problem or has any suggestions. Since the car is within warranty I really want to get the issue resolved ASAP. 馃槦
  • Like
Reactions: 1
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
First off, welcome to the forum

Second, you're saying that if you cool the inside of the car, the tapping sound goes away?

Yes, it doesn't sound like this is caused by the direct injection fuel pump. That goes away quite quickly after startup. You can hear the rather noisy high pressure fuel pump for the direct injectors as soon as you start the car cold. After a short period of time, the engine RPM and the sound of the engine will change. This is when the engine switches from direct injection to port injection.

Have you been able to localize where the sound is coming from?

When it's loudest, can it be heard if you're standing outside the car with the doors and windows closed?

The reason I ask is there has been a couple of times I have read about exhaust heat shields that were not attached completely. You did, however, mention about the cooling of the interior and it not being there when the outside temperature was lower. It could be HVAC duct system issue and colder air will change the characteristics of this duct work. You said it's changes its tapping rate with the engine RPM. Does it also change with fan speed changes?
See less See more
  • Like
Reactions: 1
after a 5-10 minutes driving when the temperature inside went up, it started making a tapping sound that sort of sounds like a major exhaust leak
With all the variables you recite (A/C on/ off; interior hot /cold etc.) this would be very difficult to diagnose. It would be best if you make a short video on your phone recording the tapping noise and post it here. I must say that a "major" exhaust leak would be very loud and unmistakable. Does the tapping noise occur when you are in gear driving or only when you are in "park"--or both? Have you tried to leave the engine off and put ignition into "accessory" and see if the tapping occurs when you run the climate control and A/C? Did the tapping happen in the winter when you ran the heater and defrost and fan?
You need to eliminate some variables and break it down to reach a diagnosis of the "tapping noise". First, you want to determine if the tapping is caused by the engine or by the climate control system. If you run the climate control (A/C) on ignition "accessory" with the engine turned off and you get tapping --bingo! It's coming from the interior and the climate control. Conversely, if you completely turn off the climate control and run the engine and hear tapping then it's coming from the engine. Then you want to determine if it's coming from the engine or the driveline. With the car in "park" or neutral and the RAV stationary, if you hear tapping then it's coming solely from the engine--not the driveline (trans, driveshaft etc.) If you really think you have an exhaust leak then start the engine with the RAV in "park" and the parking brake(EPB) set and crawl around the passenger's side listening carefully to pinpoint the location.
Hey,

i have exactly the same issue as you with my new RAV4 , did you manage to find the reason? For me the noise is coming from the upper part between the front glass and the roof(see photo)
Car Vehicle Automotive lighting Motor vehicle Automotive design


thank you in advance
See less See more
Hey,

i have exactly the same issue as you with my new RAV4 , did you manage to find the reason? For me the noise is coming from the upper part between the front glass and the roof(see photo) View attachment 189012

thank you in advance
Anything in eyeglasses compartment?
Hey,

i have exactly the same issue as you with my new RAV4 , did you manage to find the reason? For me the noise is coming from the upper part between the front glass and the roof(see photo)
thank you in advance
Is that a stock photo?

The reason I ask is the gear selector looks like it's pulled all the way back as if the car is in Drive with nobody in the drivers seat.
Is that a stock photo?

The reason I ask is the gear selector looks like it's pulled all the way back as if the car is in Drive with nobody in the drivers seat.
No actually the photo is from the internet
Anything in eyeglasses compartment?
No, if there was something it will result in noise even when the temperature is low. But the noise happens only when temperature goes up
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top