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‘02 TRX450S 4x4 with “ticking noise”


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Hi Fellow Forum Members, yes I’m a Newbie (so be kind… lol).  Within the past 2 years I’ve started riding, acquiring and repairing Honda ATVs.  I’m “self teaching” how to repair them from YouTube.  I currently have 4 (three Foreman = ‘02-‘04 TRX400FW & TRX450FM 4x4 and one ‘98 Recon TRX250 2X4).  My question:  Is it normal for Hondas “to tick”?  All three Foremans have ticking sound… valves have been adjusted (compression improved but ticking persists).  Any suggestions as to other causes or fixes?  Video/audio of ‘04 TRX400FW is attached.  Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated!

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How did you measure the valve clearance ?  If the valves get a bit of wear, or the rocker, they can have a bit of a dish where one part touches another, and if you try adjusting them with a feller gauge you get the wrong clearance.

You could try adjusting them with a dial gauge, or, use your ear..  A valve clearance of two thou, you can feel but barely hear click when you snap it down against the valve, it will be a muffled little click.. four thou you can feel and hear as a crisp click most vehicles..  Rough setting but people have been using it for ever..  It's a good idea if you have one, to use the dial gauge to start, and then check with your fingers and ears what it's like for future reference.


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Thought to add..

Leaking head gasket or small exhaust leaks at the head can make a noise that might be taken for a click..  Also the cam chains can hit the sleeve and make a noise, and the pistons can make a click/tap if they've been overheated and got a black anodised scale on the skirt.. The piston though is a lot noisier when cold, so sort of easy to spot.

If you suspect it is a valve clearance you could try either tightening or loosening them and seeing it it changes. You could also try to locate the noise by putting a screwdriver handle to your ear and the tip on different places on the motor using it as a stethoscope.

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