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Old 11-30-2009, 07:21 PM   #1
chicklin
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Exhaust popping

Well, I thought I had this thing licked but I guess not. If you've read any of these threads you'll know what I've done, but I've still got a popping noise from the exhaust.

http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=370615
http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=370264

The short story is just about everything has been replaced and I still have a little popping or spitting noise coming from the exhaust. It seems to only happen under acceleration, particularly under load (i.e. I can't reproduce it as easily sitting in the driveway). It also seems to get worse as it warms up.

Vacuum is 18 and steady, timing is 8 btdc, the entire ignition system has been replaced, the entire fuel/air delivery system has been replaced. The exhaust from the cat back has been replaced. The heat riser functions properly. The idle mixture was set via vacuum to 3 turns out on a newly rebuilt carb. The choke has been adjust to open fully when warm and close to about a 1/8" gap when cold. Compression is good and even all around.

It does idle a little rough. Not bad, but just a little miss every couple of revolutions. The engine supposedly has about 79k on it. It could be 179k, but I'd say that by the condition of the rest of the vehicle, 79k is not unfeasible. I don't know anything about the condition of the internals.

As far as power, it's hard to say. I've been driving an '02 Silverado for the last 5 years so I don't think I can give it a fair shake. I can run down the highway at 75 no problem and it doesn't seem to downshift much. It does feel a little sluggish accelerating, but again my frame of reference is probably off.

The only thing I haven't really checked (and what I'm leaning towards) is some kind of valve train issue. My local Chevy dealer (who I've done a lot of business with and generally trust) quoted me about $1,500 out the door for a complete top-end rebuild. Not sure if I'll get to that point, but is that a reasonable number? Short of that, what else can I check?

It's not a huge problem and I'm driving it every day on the interstate to and from work, so it's definitely getting worked, which is good. I'm just kind of anal as I know there is something wrong and that just needles at me.
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Old 11-30-2009, 08:16 PM   #2
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Re: Exhaust popping

something in the valve train is the only thing left and what i thought of after you said you replaced the ignition system as i was thinking there someplace
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Old 11-30-2009, 08:30 PM   #3
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Re: Exhaust popping

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something in the valve train is the only thing left and what i thought of after you said you replaced the ignition system as i was thinking there someplace
So, what exactly would cause this? A worn cam, broken or worn springs, valves out of adjustment, all of the above? The same shop said they would do the valve inspection/adjustment for $250 out the door. I know I could do it myself, but the time and mess involved makes me lean towards having them do it, as long as that's reasonable.
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Old 12-01-2009, 06:47 AM   #4
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Re: Exhaust popping

I'm going to ask a stupid question. Did you replace the plug wires? How about your vacuum advance? I fought this problem with "newer" plug wires and that is what I had it narrowed down to after complete rebuild on the HEI and replacing the vac adv.. Truck didn't idle rough though. I'd double check everything before I did a top end rebuild.Pop your valve covers and check valve adjustment.
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Old 12-01-2009, 08:29 AM   #5
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Re: Exhaust popping

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I'm going to ask a stupid question. Did you replace the plug wires? How about your vacuum advance? I fought this problem with "newer" plug wires and that is what I had it narrowed down to after complete rebuild on the HEI and replacing the vac adv.. Truck didn't idle rough though. I'd double check everything before I did a top end rebuild.Pop your valve covers and check valve adjustment.
Entire distributor (which came with a new vac adv), plugs, wires and coil have all been replaced and checked. The plugs are not fouling as far as I can tell, the wires are routed correctly and there is no obvious arcing anywhere.
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Old 12-01-2009, 09:34 AM   #6
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Re: Exhaust popping

Take the belt off the smog pump (if it has one) and try it. I had a worn out 305 that would pop like crazy with that thing running, although it was mostly on deceleration.
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Old 12-01-2009, 10:15 AM   #7
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Re: Exhaust popping

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Take the belt off the smog pump (if it has one) and try it. I had a worn out 305 that would pop like crazy with that thing running, although it was mostly on deceleration.
I'll give that a try. I still have the catalytic converter, though so, theoretically, the smog pump should still be needed (or at least useful).
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Old 12-01-2009, 05:14 PM   #8
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Re: Exhaust popping

Did some more tinkering today. Finally figured up the MPG for this thing: 8.6 mpg. Not good. I also noticed that I can get it to pop and blow out a plume of black smoke while in park after it's good and warm.

So, obviously, I am getting a bunch of unburnt fuel in the exhaust due to it running rich (at least that seems right to me). So, where do I start troubleshooting this? I have a brand new rebuilt carb that I ordered online, but I guess I really have no idea how it is adjusted. Like I mentioned, the idle screws are about 3 turns out, but that should have very little to do with the mileage driving back and forth to work on the interstate, right?

Is there some way to adjust the other jets in this carb? Or, is there something else causing the rich condition? It's a stock Quadrajet M4MED.
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Last edited by chicklin; 12-01-2009 at 06:09 PM.
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Old 12-01-2009, 05:35 PM   #9
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Re: Exhaust popping

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Originally Posted by chicklin View Post
Did some more tinkering today. Finally figured up the MPG for this thing: 8.6 mpg. Not good. I also noticed that I can get it to pop and blow out a plume of black smoke while in park after it's good and warm.

So, obviously, I am getting a bunch of unburnt fuel in the exhaust due to it running rich (at least that seems right to me). So, where do I start troubleshooting this? I have a brand new rebuilt carb that I ordered online, but I guess I really have no idea how it is adjusted. Like I mentioned, the idle screws are about 3 turns out, but that should have very little to do with the mileage driving back and forth to work on the interstate, right?

Is there some way to adjust the other jets in this carb? Or, is there something else causing the rich condition? It's a stock Quadrajet E4ME.
Forgot to mention:

Stock 350
4 bbl carb
31" tires
700R4 and I use the overdrive on the highway
3.42 gears

Shouldn't I be getting at least 12-14mpg? Heck, the specs for that year say 15.
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Old 12-01-2009, 09:32 PM   #10
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Re: Exhaust popping

Made a little progress tonight. I set my timing using the vacuum guage rather than the specs under the hood (8 btdc). I advanced it to max vacuum and then backed it off about 1.5 inches from there, just to be on the safe side (I think the recommendation is 1 inch from max vacuum). It ended up around 14 btdc.

The popping is not completely gone but it definitely seems fainter and the acceleration and throttle response is WAY better. It actually feels like a truck now, not a schoolbus.

Now, I don't know if this is doing anything for the mileage, but it sure feels like an improvement. I'm going to drive it for a day or so and maybe advance it a little more again and see if it improves any more.

Does this sound at all consistent with the symptoms I was seeing? Is advancing the timing likely to improve the gas mileage?
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Last edited by chicklin; 12-01-2009 at 09:33 PM.
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Old 12-01-2009, 09:49 PM   #11
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Re: Exhaust popping

Quote:
Originally Posted by chicklin View Post
Well, I thought I had this thing licked but I guess not. If you've read any of these threads you'll know what I've done, but I've still got a popping noise from the exhaust.

http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=370615
http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=370264

The short story is just about everything has been replaced and I still have a little popping or spitting noise coming from the exhaust. It seems to only happen under acceleration, particularly under load (i.e. I can't reproduce it as easily sitting in the driveway). It also seems to get worse as it warms up.

Vacuum is 18 and steady, timing is 8 btdc, the entire ignition system has been replaced, the entire fuel/air delivery system has been replaced. The exhaust from the cat back has been replaced. The heat riser functions properly. The idle mixture was set via vacuum to 3 turns out on a newly rebuilt carb. The choke has been adjust to open fully when warm and close to about a 1/8" gap when cold. Compression is good and even all around.

It does idle a little rough. Not bad, but just a little miss every couple of revolutions. The engine supposedly has about 79k on it. It could be 179k, but I'd say that by the condition of the rest of the vehicle, 79k is not unfeasible. I don't know anything about the condition of the internals.

As far as power, it's hard to say. I've been driving an '02 Silverado for the last 5 years so I don't think I can give it a fair shake. I can run down the highway at 75 no problem and it doesn't seem to downshift much. It does feel a little sluggish accelerating, but again my frame of reference is probably off.

The only thing I haven't really checked (and what I'm leaning towards) is some kind of valve train issue. My local Chevy dealer (who I've done a lot of business with and generally trust) quoted me about $1,500 out the door for a complete top-end rebuild. Not sure if I'll get to that point, but is that a reasonable number? Short of that, what else can I check?

It's not a huge problem and I'm driving it every day on the interstate to and from work, so it's definitely getting worked, which is good. I'm just kind of anal as I know there is something wrong and that just needles at me.
For $1500.00 (or less) you can get a new G.M. Goodwrench 350 engine!

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Old 12-01-2009, 10:19 PM   #12
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Re: Exhaust popping

Looks like $2k for a 290HP GM crate 350. I guess less if you don't buy it directly from GM.

If it turns out to be something of that nature, that's probably the route I would go. It makes a lot more sense. However, I'm not sure the valvetrain is the problem, yet.
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Old 12-01-2009, 10:28 PM   #13
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Re: Exhaust popping

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Looks like $2k for a 290HP GM crate 350. I guess less if you don't buy it directly from GM.

If it turns out to be something of that nature, that's probably the route I would go. It makes a lot more sense. However, I'm not sure the valvetrain is the problem, yet.
G.M. will sell it wholesale to you also if you try and save on shipping too. Shop around town at local dealers for best price.

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Old 12-01-2009, 10:32 PM   #14
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Re: Exhaust popping

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Originally Posted by chicklin View Post
Looks like $2k for a 290HP GM crate 350. I guess less if you don't buy it directly from GM.

If it turns out to be something of that nature, that's probably the route I would go. It makes a lot more sense. However, I'm not sure the valvetrain is the problem, yet.
Popping could be a burnt valve or rounded exhaust cam lobe.
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Old 12-02-2009, 06:41 PM   #15
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Re: Exhaust popping

Well, so much for that. Same symptoms today. Spitting noise in the exhaust, feels like it's choking on the highway. I verified that the choke is fully open when warm. The acceleration is better due to the timing advance, but it still feels like it's working way too hard to stay up to speed.

So, I'm still either running rich or not getting a complete burn (or both). What else can I check? If it is a valve-train issue, are there any diagnostic tricks I can try short of pulling the covers? I have very steady vacuum on the gauge, right at 18".
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:20 PM   #16
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Re: Exhaust popping

give the motor to me at buy that new 350 already
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:31 PM   #17
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Re: Exhaust popping

Are you getting any rotten egg smell from the exhaust? I had one with a partially clogged converter that left me stranded on Christmas eve in a snow storm. Turned out the pellets had broken loose and once plugged melted everything together and pop! When that happened, it blew the muffler out the back and into the car behind me.. The converter however was intact and completely blocking my exhaust.
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:36 PM   #18
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Re: Exhaust popping

My truck was running very rough while back and I kept getting lots trash in fuel filter. I pulled tank and the sock had fallen off the pick-up and it was sucking lots trash in fuel lines. I replaced tank and sending unit and no more porblems.
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:41 PM   #19
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Re: Exhaust popping

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Are you getting any rotten egg smell from the exhaust? I had one with a partially clogged converter that left me stranded on Christmas eve in a snow storm. Turned out the pellets had broken loose and once plugged melted everything together and pop! When that happened, it blew the muffler out the back and into the car behind me.. The converter however was intact and completely blocking my exhaust.
New convert, new muffler, new intermediate pipe
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:42 PM   #20
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Re: Exhaust popping

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My truck was running very rough while back and I kept getting lots trash in fuel filter. I pulled tank and the sock had fallen off the pick-up and it was sucking lots trash in fuel lines. I replaced tank and sending unit and no more porblems.
Wouldn't that make it lean, though? Everything here points to it running rich. It's not really rough, it's just sluggish, uses a ton of fuel and causes popping in the exhaust, which appears to be unburnt fuel.
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:49 PM   #21
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Re: Exhaust popping

wrong size jets? was it allways doing this after the new carb?
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Old 12-02-2009, 10:01 PM   #22
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Re: Exhaust popping

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wrong size jets? was it allways doing this after the new carb?
That's what I'm wondering. I can't remember if it did it before b/c there were so many other problems (timing off, choke not working, major vacuum leaks). That's what it feels like, though. It's not rich at idle, I don't think, but it definitely seems like it at highway speeds.

Are the non-idle circuits adjustable in a Q-jet or do you just have to change out the jets?
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Old 12-02-2009, 10:07 PM   #23
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Re: Exhaust popping

im not a expert on qjets (but i did stay in a holidayinn last night)
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Old 12-04-2009, 11:46 PM   #24
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Re: Exhaust popping

Well, adjusted the valves and put new gaskets on tonight. I also blocked off that damn EGR for now. It's really in the way when you're trying to work in there.

It seemed to run well when I test drove it, but I can't honestly say I noticed any difference from before. The spitting noise in the exhaust is still there after it warms up, but it seems fainter again. I may be fooling myself, though, so I'll drive it for a couple days and see what I think.

If this doesn't get rid of it, the only thing left is the carb. I emailed the guy I bought it from to ask about how it was rebuilt. We'll see if I get an answer.

I guess this isn't that big a deal, but it just keeps nagging me. I may have to move on to other things like replacing my u-joints and figuring out where the slop is in the front driveshaft that is causing this clunking noise when I'm in 4x4. It never ends....
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Old 12-05-2009, 07:46 AM   #25
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Re: Exhaust popping

Popping in the exhaust can also be caused by a leak in the exhaust system. A leak up-stream can allow fresh air to be sucked in, especially during decelleration, which can cause the popping
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