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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
After my oil cooler hose mishap (http://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f101/oil-cooler-line-failure-speed-54611/), I have been paying close attention to any and all strange sounds. While putting the car in the garage one evening, I noticed a strange new sound.

While standing right by the right rear wheel I could hear a tap-tap noise, almost like the old baseball card in the spokes sound. As I revved the engine, the tapping increased in frequency. From inside the car, I could barely make out the sound over all the other Elise sounds. Even directly behind the engine with the lid up, it was difficult to hear. But, stick your ear down by the rear wheel and it was very obvious.

So, in to Criswell before my warranty is up (June 22). The verdict was the Belt Tensioner Assembly and a new belt. No more noise, and once again a nice experience with Marty in service.

While poking around on Google, I found this - http://www.z-car.com/gallery/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=569 - Toyota TSB for the Belt Tensioner

So, if you hear a similiar tap-tap, take it in. If you are out of warranty, try taking along the Toyota TSB, who knows, maybe it will help to get it covered.
 

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Tensioner

+1 Good post. I'm out of warranty but just recently determined a tensioner failure on my Elise. Went down the street to the Toyota dealership and within a couple of days and $130.00 the part was in my hand. Sorry you had a problem but at least I know I'm not the only one.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
My guess is that unless Lotus also releases a TSB, we will start seeing a lot more of these. Makes you wonder what batch of engines Lotus received from Toyota?

Why should you have to pay $130 for a part because you bought a Lotus? If your engine was in a Matrix, Toyota would have picked up the cost...
 

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^ I hear you on the Toyota warranty issue. Personally, I don't like the way the tensioner is engineered in the first place. Given the design, the tensioner is only going to tighten the belt to it's engineered resistant strength. My Elise is supercharged and that even makes the tensioner a weaker link and a potential frustration should the belt decide it wasn't tight enough and wanted to slip. I understand why Toyota chose the design because it offers somewhat of a "self adjustment" theory for people that are probably not as interested in the ability to make fine adjustments since their car is probably more of a daily driver. On any given track weekend, I feel certain my belt increases in length. To me, instead of the hydraulic pressure offered by the existing tensioner, why not a adjustable metal plate? If somebody hasn't already come up with this solution it makes sense to put creative thoughts together, fabricate the widget, and give it a try.
 

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The bolt on my tensioner snapped at the track on Thursday. Car boiled off its coolant. Looks like a blown headgasket or worse...
 

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good post & find. My XRS has this issue.

Thanks.
 

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maybe i better look at mine....
sam
 

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After my oil cooler hose mishap (http://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f101/oil-cooler-line-failure-speed-54611/), I have been paying close attention to any and all strange sounds. While putting the car in the garage one evening, I noticed a strange new sound.

While standing right by the right rear wheel I could hear a tap-tap noise, almost like the old baseball card in the spokes sound. As I revved the engine, the tapping increased in frequency. From inside the car, I could barely make out the sound over all the other Elise sounds. Even directly behind the engine with the lid up, it was difficult to hear. But, stick your ear down by the rear wheel and it was very obvious.

So, in to Criswell before my warranty is up (June 22). The verdict was the Belt Tensioner Assembly and a new belt. No more noise, and once again a nice experience with Marty in service.

While poking around on Google, I found this - http://www.z-car.com/gallery/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=569 - Toyota TSB for the Belt Tensioner

So, if you hear a similiar tap-tap, take it in. If you are out of warranty, try taking along the Toyota TSB, who knows, maybe it will help to get it covered.
Jeez, Gary. You keep a positive attitude with your car considering some of the bad luck you've had!:clap:

Todd
 

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The belt tensioner is a common problem with these engines. Once you've heard the sound, you know what it is. Easily fixed.
 
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