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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone,

This is my first time visiting and posting but I can already see myself being a frequent user.

I was hoping someone would have a general idea of what the possible problems could be. I am no expert and will describe the problem as best as I can.


First problem:
I notice this while stopped, whether at a stop light or a stop sign. Once I stop the car makes a rattle/squeal noise. It sounds like it is coming from underneath the car. To avoid the noise I put the car into neutral and it goes away until I stop again while in drive.


Second problem:
This is another problem that I notice while stopped. While stopped, the car will backfire/ surge (not sure what to call it). It doesn't do it often, it is usually once every minute or two. I know it is coming because the car rumbles a bit. However, just like the first problem, it does not do it when I put the car into neutral.

I am wondering if these problems are related at all and what it could be. I drive a 2002 Ford Focus SE. 2.0L 110 hp, 4-Speed Automatic Overdrive. It also has 92k miles.

Any help at all would be greatly appreciated.
 

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You should inspect your timing belt. Remove the upper timing belt cover, and use a permanent marker to mark the center of all of the belt you can inspect. Look for worn rubber with fiber (cotton looking) popping up outside the rubber, and also check the ribs for missing chunks, or completely missing ribs. Bump the engine with the key to move the belt and inspect another part of the belt. If you find one missing, cracked, or damaged rib you should probably replace the belt. About 100k is the lifetime of a timing belt.

If the timing belt looks good, then we'll move on to the next cause- which I think would've thrown a check engine light, but we'll go there anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
You should inspect your timing belt. Remove the upper timing belt cover, and use a permanent marker to mark the center of all of the belt you can inspect. Look for worn rubber with fiber (cotton looking) popping up outside the rubber, and also check the ribs for missing chunks, or completely missing ribs. Bump the engine with the key to move the belt and inspect another part of the belt. If you find one missing, cracked, or damaged rib you should probably replace the belt. About 100k is the lifetime of a timing belt.

If the timing belt looks good, then we'll move on to the next cause- which I think would've thrown a check engine light, but we'll go there anyway.
oh ok thanks, I didn't know that. Is that something I can check by just opening up the hood? Sorry if that is a dumb question.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
well I brought it in after I didn't see anything in the engine.

The problem with the rattling was the heat shield fell off onto my muffler.

now the other problem is I have holes either in my muffler or exhaust system. They said it would be $800 to fix that so I am assuming it is the system. Is that a fair price? Is this something I can do?
 
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